In calculus, integration by parts, also known as partial integration is a process used to calculate the integral of the product of functions in terms of the integral of the product of derivative and antiderivative. Partial integration is often used to convert the antiderivative of the product of functions into an antiderivative for which the answer can be easily determined.

Integration By Parts Formula

The formula of partial integration or integration by parts is used to integrate the product of two functions. This technique works by calculating the integrals by reducing them into standard forms. For instance, if we have to calculate the integration of the function 2x cos x, then we can use this formula. In such cases, the integrand is the product of two functions. The formula for partial integration is given below:

\int uv dx = u \int v dx  - \int u' (\int v dx) dx

We can also write this formula like this:

\int uv dx = u \int v dx  - \int (\frac{du}{dx} \int v dx) dx

Remember the following important points while using the integration by parts method to integrate the function:

  • We cannot use the integration by parts method to integrate the functions such as \int \sqrt{x} sin x dx
  • No constant is added while integrating the second function using this method
  • Generally, when any function is a power of x or polynomial in x, then we assume it as a first function. However, in situations, where another function is a logarithmic function or an inverse trigonometric function, then we assume that function as a first one.


In partial integration or integration by parts, we have discussed that if the product of two functions are given, then we apply the relevant formula. The integrals of two functions are calculated, by assuming the left term as a first function and the second term as a second function. This method is known as ILATE rule.

Let suppose that you need to integrate a function x e^x. In this case, we assume x as the first function and e^x as the second function. It means that the first function is selected in such a manner that the derivative of the function can be integrated easily. This rule is preferred on inverse, algebraic, logarithmic, trigonometric, and exponential functions.


Need a Maths teacher?

Did you like the article?

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars 3.00/5 - 2 vote(s)


I am passionate about travelling and currently live and work in Paris. I like to spend my time reading, gardening, running, learning languages and exploring new places.