### Describe the main parts of a proof

**Subject** : Find out now about the major parts of proofs

**Question:** Describe the main parts of a proof.

**Expert Verified Solution:**

A proof is a logical argument that establishes the truth of a statement in mathematics or logic. The main parts of a proof include:

**Given Information (Premises or Hypotheses):**

These facts, definitions, postulates, or previously proven theorems are accepted as true and form the starting point of the proof. The given information is what you begin with to construct your logical argument.

**Statement to Prove (Conclusion or Theorem):**

This is the statement or proposition that you are trying to demonstrate or prove is true based on the given information. It is typically stated clearly at the beginning of the proof and is what the proof aims to establish.

**Logical Argument (Reasoning or Proof Body):**

This part consists of a series of logical steps that connect the given information to the statement you are trying to prove. Each step follows logically from the previous one, using definitions, postulates, properties, or previously established theorems. The reasoning must be clear, systematic, and valid.

The argument often involves deductive reasoning, which means each step must be justified with a reason, such as a definition, a property, a theorem, or an axiom.

**Justifications (Reasons or Rationale):**

For each logical step in the argument, a justification is provided to explain why the step is valid. Justifications are often written in parentheses next to each step or listed in a separate column if a two-column proof format is used. Justifications may include definitions, algebraic properties, logical rules, postulates, and previously proven theorems.

**Conclusion (Final Statement):**

This is the statement that concludes the proof, affirming that the original statement to be proven has indeed been demonstrated to be true. The conclusion summarizes the result of the logical argument and ties back to the theorem or proposition stated at the beginning of the proof.

**Types of Proofs:**

**Direct Proof:**

In direct proof, the conclusion is established by a straightforward chain of logical deductions from the given premises. Each step directly follows from the previous ones until the desired conclusion is reached.

**Indirect Proof (Proof by Contradiction or Proof by Contrapositive):**

An indirect proof assumes the opposite (negation) of the statement to be proven and then shows that this assumption leads to a contradiction, thereby proving that the original statement must be true.

**Proof by Induction:**

A proof by induction is used to establish that a statement holds for all natural numbers. It involves two main steps:

**Base Case:** Prove the statement is true for the first natural number (often n = 1).

**Inductive Step:** Assume the statement is true for some arbitrary natural number k, and then prove it is also true for k + 1. This process proves the statement is true for all natural numbers.

**Constructive Proof:**

This type of proof involves constructing a specific example or object to demonstrate the truth of a statement.

Each type of proof follows a specific logical structure to ensure the statement is convincingly and rigorously demonstrated to be true.

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