# Calculating Derivatives in Matlab/Octave

To compute the derivative of a function f(x) in Matlab or Octave, utilize the diff() function:

**diff(f,x,n)**

Parameters of the diff() function are as follows:

- 'f' : the function to be differentiated.
- 'x' : the variable with respect to which differentiation is performed.
- 'n' : the order of differentiation.

**Note**. By default, the order of differentiation is set to 1, implying the first derivative. Ensure that the function variables are defined as symbols. In Octave, the `diff` function necessitates the installation and activation of the Symbolic library.

## Examples

**Example 1 (First Derivative)**

Define a variable as a symbol:

syms x

Define the function f = x^{2}

f=x**2

Differentiate the function using the diff() function, specifying the differentiation variable:

diff(f,x)

The result represents the first derivative:

ans = (sym) 2*x

**Example 2 (Second Derivative)**

To compute the second derivative of the aforementioned function, set the order of differentiation to 2:

diff(f,x,2)

The output represents the second derivative:

ans = (sym) 2

**Example 2 (Third Derivative)**

For the third derivative of the function, set the order of differentiation to 3:

diff(f,x,3)

The resulting output is the third derivative:

ans = (sym) 0

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