We are going to use a method known as the 'ac' method to factor these types of quadratic equations. This is a systematic method that employs *factoring by grouping*. It is always much easier to look at some example problems before reading generalized steps, but the steps go as follows.

**Steps**

If you have a quadratic equation in the form $$ \red{a}x^2 + \blue b x + \color{green}{c} $$

- Step 1) Determine the product of $$ \blue a \cdot \color{green}{c} $$ (the coefficients in a quadratic equation)
- Step 2) Determine what factors of $$ \red{a} \cdot \color{green}{c} $$ sum to $$ \blue b$$
- Step 3)
*ungroup*the $$\blue{ middle} $$ term to become the sum of the factors found in step 2 - Step 4) group the pairs.

As I expressed earlier, it's much easier to understand this method by simply walking through a few examples. So don't worry if the steps above seem like algebraic nonsense -- just check out the example problems below.