# What Is a Y-Coordinate?

## What Is the Y-Coordinate?

The y-coordinate is the second number in the pair of numbers used to describe Cartesian coordinates.

For example, in the Cartesian coordinates **(2, 4)**, the y-coordinate is **4** (the number on the right):

## What Does the Y-Coordinate Mean?

The y-coordinate tells you how far **up** (or **down**) the vertical y-axis a point is on a graph (measured from the origin).

If a point has Cartesian coordinates **(2, 4)**, the point would be **4** units up the y-axis. The image below shows what we mean by a point being 4 units along the x-axis (measured from the origin):

**Note:** The y-axis is labelled with numbers (0, 1, 2, 3...) so you can measure how far up the point is.

## The Y-Coordinate Can Be Positive...

If you go **up** the y-axis (above the x-axis), it is labelled with positive numbers (0, 1, 2, 3...).

The y-coordinate of any point **above** the x-axis is **positive**.

Imagine a point had an y-coordinate of **4**. It would be **4** units **above** the y-axis:

## ...Or the Y-Coordinate Can Be Negative

If you go **down** the y-axis (below the x-axis), it is labelled with negative numbers (0, −1, −2, −3...).

The y-coordinate of any point **below** the x-axis is **negative**.

Imagine a point had an y-coordinate of **-4**. It would be **4** units **below** the x-axis: