## The Exponent Rule for Derivatives — Your One-Stop Shop to Staircase-Looking Functions

Like the featured image above? Good for you! As students (fanatics?) of mathematics and other technical sciences, we have an intuitive appreciation of the role this topic — **calculus** — plays out in our daily life. While obviously not a subject to be mastered overnight, what’s true is that our first exposure to it tends to be almost universally restricted to the topic of **derivatives** of *elementary functions. *

Interestingly enough, when it comes to the *calculation of derivatives*, there is a rule of thumb out there that goes something like this: either the function is *basic*, in which case we can appeal to the **table of derivatives**, or the function is *composite*, in which case we can differentiated it *recursively* — by breaking it down into the derivatives of its *constituents* via a series of **derivative rules**. More