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Difference Between Intermediate Value Theorem and Squeeze Theorem for JEE Main 2025

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What is Intermediate Value Theorem and Squeeze Theorem: Introduction

To explain intermediate value theorem and squeeze theorem: The intermediate value theorem states that if a continuous function takes on two values at the endpoints of an interval, then it must also take on every value between those two endpoints within that interval. This theorem guarantees the existence of a solution or root to an equation within a given interval.


Category:

JEE Main Difference Between

Content-Type:

Text, Images, Videos and PDF

Exam:

JEE Main

Topic Name:

Difference Between Intermediate Value Theorem and Squeeze Theorem

Academic Session:

2025

Medium:

English Medium

Subject:

Mathematics

Available Material:

Chapter-wise Difference Between Topics


On the other hand, the squeeze theorem provides a method to evaluate the limit of a function by comparing it to two other functions that bound it. It states that if two bounding functions approach the same limit as they converge to a point, then the function of interest also approaches that same limit at that point.


Defining Intermediate Value Theorem 

The intermediate value theorem states that if a function is continuous on a closed interval, and takes on two different values at the endpoints of that interval, then it must also take on every value in between. In simpler terms, if you have a continuous function that starts at one value and ends at another, it must pass through every value in between at some point within that interval. Some characteristics of IVT are:

  • Continuity: The IVT applies to functions that are continuous on a closed interval [a, b]. Continuity ensures that there are no abrupt jumps or holes in the function within the interval.

  • Two distinct values: The IVT requires that the function takes on two distinct values, f(a) and f(b), at the endpoints of the interval [a, b]. These values establish a range within which intermediate values can be found.

  • Intermediate values: The IVT guarantees the existence of at least one value c in the open interval (a, b) where the function takes on any intermediate value between f(a) and f(b). This means the function "connects" the endpoints, passing through every value in between.

  • No requirement for differentiability: The IVT does not require the function to be differentiable. It solely relies on the continuity of the function on the interval.

  • Application in root-finding: The IVT is commonly used to prove the existence of roots or solutions for equations within a given interval. It provides a powerful tool for locating where a function crosses the x-axis.


Defining Squeeze Theorem

The squeeze theorem, also known as the sandwich theorem, states that if two functions, g(x) and h(x), "squeeze" a third function, f(x), between them for all values of x in a neighborhood of a certain point (except possibly at that point), and both g(x) and h(x) approach the same limit as x approaches that point, then f(x) also approaches that same limit. In other words, the squeeze theorem provides a method to determine the limit of a function by comparing it to two other functions that act as upper and lower bounds. Some characteristics of squeeze theorem are:

  • Limit equality: The squeeze theorem states that if both f(x) and h(x) have the same limit as x approaches a, then g(x) also has the same limit as x approaches a.

  • Bounding: The squeeze theorem "squeezes" or bounds the function g(x) between f(x) and h(x). It provides an upper and lower bound for the function, which helps determine its limit.

  • No requirement for equality: The functions f(x) and h(x) do not have to be equal to each other or to g(x). The only requirement is that they have the same limit as x approaches a.

  • Convergence: The squeeze theorem is used to establish the limit of a function by utilizing the convergence of the bounding functions. If f(x) and h(x) both converge to a limit, then g(x) is guaranteed to converge to the same limit.

  • Widely applicable: The squeeze theorem is a versatile tool in calculus and can be applied to various functions and scenarios to determine their limits.


Intermediate Value Theorem and Squeeze Theorem Differences

S.No

Category 

Intermediate Value Theorem

Squeeze Theorem

1.

Conditions

Function must be continuous on a closed interval.

Functions must satisfy the given inequalities and limits.

2.

Purpose

Guarantees the existence of a root or solution to an equation.

Evaluates the limit of a function when the limits of two other functions are known.

3.

Relationship to Continuity

Relies on the function being continuous on the interval.

Does not require continuity but assumes certain inequalities and limits.

4.

Representation

Stated in terms of function values and interval properties.

Involves comparisons and inequalities between functions.

5. 

Conclusions

Ensures the existence of a solution within a specified interval.

Determines the limit of a function based on the behavior of bounding functions.

6. 

Examples

Showing that a continuous function has a root within an interval.

Evaluating limits by bounding a function between two known functions.


These differences highlight the distinct purposes, conditions, and representations of the IVT and the Squeeze Theorem, providing a clearer understanding of their respective roles in calculus. 


Summary 

The characteristics of intermediate value theorem and squeeze theorem highlight their differences. The Intermediate Value Theorem states that if a continuous function takes on two distinct values between two points, then it must also take on every value between those two points. In other words, it guarantees the existence of a root or zero within the interval. On the other hand, the Squeeze Theorem focuses on bounding a function between two other functions that converge to the same limit. It allows us to determine the limit of a function by considering the limits of two "squeezing" functions. While both theorems deal with continuous functions, the Intermediate Value Theorem is concerned with the existence of a value, while the Squeeze Theorem helps in evaluating the limit of a function.

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FAQs on Difference Between Intermediate Value Theorem and Squeeze Theorem for JEE Main 2025

1. Can the intermediate value theorem be used to find the exact value of a solution?

No, the Intermediate Value Theorem (IVT) does not provide a method for finding the exact value of a solution. It guarantees the existence of a value within a given interval where a function takes on a specific intermediate value, but it does not provide a means to determine that value precisely. The IVT ensures that there is at least one solution, but it does not specify how to find it.

2. What role does continuity play in the application of the Intermediate Value Theorem?

Continuity plays a crucial role in the application of the Intermediate Value Theorem. The theorem specifically requires that the function being considered is continuous on the closed interval under consideration. Continuity ensures that there are no sudden jumps or breaks in the function's behavior within that interval. Without continuity, the Intermediate Value Theorem cannot be applied reliably to establish the existence of a solution or root within the interval.

3. How does the Squeeze Theorem establish the limit of a function?

The squeeze theorem establishes the limit of a function by bounding it between two other functions. If three functions, f(x), g(x), and h(x), satisfy the inequality f(x) ≤ g(x) ≤ h(x) for all x in a certain interval, and if both f(x) and h(x) have the same limit as x approaches a, then g(x) also has the same limit as x approaches a. By comparing the function g(x) to the bounding functions, the squeeze theorem guarantees that the limit of g(x) must be the same as the limits of f(x) and h(x).

4. Can the squeeze theorem be used when the bounding functions have different limits?

No, the squeeze theorem cannot be used when the bounding functions have different limits. The squeeze theorem requires that both bounding functions approach the same limit as they converge to a certain point. If the bounding functions have different limits, it implies that they do not provide a consistent upper and lower bound for the function of interest. In such cases, alternative methods need to be employed to determine the limit of the function.

5. How does the intermediate value theorem guarantee the existence of a solution or root to an equation?

The Intermediate Value Theorem (IVT) guarantees the existence of a solution or root to an equation by leveraging the concept of continuity. If a function f(x) is continuous on a closed interval [a, b] and takes on two distinct values, say f(a) and f(b), at the endpoints of the interval, then the IVT guarantees that for any intermediate value y between f(a) and f(b), there exists at least one value c within the interval such that f(c) = y. This means that the function must pass through every intermediate value within its range on the given interval, ensuring the existence of a solution or root to the equation f(x) = y.