# Every $n$-Dimensional Vector Space is Isomorphic to the Vector Space $\R^n$

## Problem 545

Let $V$ be a vector space over the field of real numbers $\R$.

Prove that if the dimension of $V$ is $n$, then $V$ is isomorphic to $\R^n$.

## Proof.

Since $V$ is an $n$-dimensional vector space, it has a basis
$B=\{\mathbf{v}_1, \dots, \mathbf{v}_n\},$ where each $\mathbf{v}_i$ is a vector in $V$.

Define a map $T: V\to \R^n$ by sending each vector $\mathbf{v}\in V$ to its coordinate vector $[\mathbf{v}]_B$ with respect to the basis $B$.
More explicitly, if
$\mathbf{v}=c_1\mathbf{v}_1+\cdots+c_n \mathbf{v}_n \text{ with } c_1, \dots, c_n \in \R,$ then the coordinate vector with respect to $B$ is
$[\mathbf{v}]_B=\begin{bmatrix} c_1 \\ c_2 \\ \vdots \\ c_n \end{bmatrix} \in \R^n.$ Then the map $T: V \to \R^n$ is defined by
$T(\mathbf{v})=\begin{bmatrix} c_1 \\ c_2 \\ \vdots \\ c_n \end{bmatrix}.$

It follows from the properties of the coordinate vectors that the map $T$ is a linear transformation.
We show that $T$ is bijective, hence an isomorphism.

### $T$ is injective.

To show that $T$ is injective, it suffices to show that the null space of $T$ is trivial: $\calN(T)=\{\mathbf{0}\}$.
(See the post “A Linear Transformation is Injective (One-To-One) if and only if the Nullity is Zero” for a proof of this fact.)

If $\mathbf{v}\in \calN(T)$, then we have
$\mathbf{0}=T(\mathbf{v})=[\mathbf{v}]_B.$ So the coordinate vector of $\mathbf{v}$ is zero, hence we have
$\mathbf{v}=0\mathbf{v}_1+\cdots +0\mathbf{v}_n=\mathbf{0}.$ Thus, $\calN(T)=\{\mathbf{0}\}$, and $T$ is injective.

### $T$ is surjective.

To show that $T$ is surjective, let
$\mathbf{a}=\begin{bmatrix} a_1 \\ a_2 \\ \vdots \\ a_n \end{bmatrix}$ be an arbitrary vector in $\R^n$.
Then consider the vector
$\mathbf{v}:=a_1\mathbf{v}_1+\cdots+ a_n \mathbf{v}_n$ in $V$.
Then it follows from the definition of the linear transformation $T$ that
$T(\mathbf{v})=[\mathbf{v}]_B=\begin{bmatrix} a_1 \\ a_2 \\ \vdots \\ a_n \end{bmatrix}=\mathbf{a}.$ Therefore $T$ is surjective.

In summary, $T: V \to \R^n$ is a bijective linear transformation, and hence $T$ is an isomorphism.
Thus, we conclude that $V$ and $\R^n$ are isomorphic.

## Generalization

We may use more general field $\F$ instead of the field of real numbers $\R$.
Then the general statement is as follows.

If $V$ is an $n$-dimensional vector space over a field $\F$, then $V$ is isomorphic to $\F^n$.

The proof is identical as above except that we replace $\R$ by $\F$ everywhere.

### 1 Response

1. Arati says:

good

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Let $U$ and $V$ be finite dimensional vector spaces over a scalar field $\F$. Consider a linear transformation $T:U\to V$....

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