Sections and chapters

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Documents usually have some levels of chapters and/or sections to keep its contents organized. LaTeX supports this type of organization and also customization of the sectioning and numbering.

Introduction

Commands to organize a document vary depending on the document type, the simplest form of organization is the sectioning, available in all formats.

documentclass

{

article

}

usepackage

{

blindtext

}

usepackage

[T1]

{

fontenc

}

usepackage

[utf8]

{

inputenc

}

title

{

Sections and Chapters

}

author

{

Gubert Farnsworth

}

date

{

today

}

begin

{

document

}

maketitle

section

{

Introduction

}

This is the first section. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam lobortisfacilisis sem. Nullam nec mi et neque pharetra sollicitudin. Praesent imperdietmi nec ante. Donec ullamcorper, felis non sodales...

section

{

Second Section

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam lobortis facilisissem. Nullam nec mi et neque pharetra sollicitudin. Praesent imperdiet mi necante...

end

{

document

}

SectionsChaptersEx1.png

The command section{} marks the beginning of a new section, inside the braces is set the title. Section numbering is automatic and can be disabled.

  Open an example in Overleaf

Document Sectioning

LaTeX can organize, number, and index chapters and sections of document. There are up to 7 levels of depth for defining sections depending on the document class:

-1
part{part}


chapter{chapter}

1
section{section}

2
subsection{subsection}

3
subsubsection{subsubsection}

4
paragraph{paragraph}

5
subparagraph{subparagraph}

Usually, section is the top-level document command in most documents. However, in reports, books and alike, this would be chapter or part.

  Open an example in Overleaf

Numbered and unnumbered sections

To get an unnumbered chapter, section, sub-section, etc. add an asterisk before the opening curly brace. These will not go into the table of contents.

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documentclass

{

article

}

usepackage

{

blindtext

}

usepackage

[T1]

{

fontenc

}

usepackage

[utf8]

{

inputenc

}

title

{

Sections and Chapters

}

author

{

Gubert Farnsworth

}

date

{

today

}

begin

{

document

}

maketitle

section*

{

Introduction

}

This is the first section. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam lobortisfacilisis sem. Nullam nec mi et neque pharetra sollicitudin. Praesent imperdietmi nec ante. Donec ullamcorper, felis non sodales...

section*

{

Second Section

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam lobortis facilisissem. Nullam nec mi et neque pharetra sollicitudin. Praesent imperdiet mi necante...

end

{

document

}

SectionsChaptersEx2.png

To add an unnumbered section to the table of contents, use the addcontentsline command like this:

addcontentsline

{

toc

}{

section

}{

Title of the section

}

See the article Table of contents for an example and description of this command.

  Open an example in Overleaf

Document chapters and sections in a Book/Report

As mentioned before, chapter can be used in documents and reports. Below you can see an example:

documentclass

{

report

}

begin

{

document

}

tableofcontents

{}

chapter

{

Editing compile

}

section

{

First Compile

}

how to compile basic hello world into a pdf. Write your favorite text editor create file and copy/paste the following (with hello.tex):

subsection

{

Output formats

}

different output formats (dvi, pdf) The output of this command

$

latex hello.tex will be a dvi file (hello.dvi). This file (.dvi) can be converted by

$

dvipdf hello.dvi The get an pdf file from tex file, run this command

$

texi2pdf hello.tex

chapter

{

Document Structure

}

section

{

Reserved Characters

}

The following symbols characters are reserved by LATEX because they introduce a command and have a special meaning.

end

{

document

}

SectionsChaptersEx3.png

Books are the most complex type of documents when it comes to grouping the content in sections. Below a complete example with parts, chapters, sections and subsections

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documentclass

{

book

}

usepackage

[T1]

{

fontenc

}

usepackage

[utf8]

{

inputenc

}

title

{

42

}

author

{

Jane Doe

}

date

{

today

}

begin

{

document

}

maketitle

tableofcontents

part

{

First Part of this document

}

chapter

{

First

}

section

{

Introduction

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco...

subsection

{

Sample subsection

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris..

subsubsection

{

Sample subsubsection

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercita...

SectionsChaptersEx4.png

  Open an example in Overleaf

Customize chapters and sections

You can use the titlesec package to customize chapters, sections and subsections style in an easy way.

documentclass

[a4paper,12pt]

{

book

}

usepackage

[T1]

{

fontenc

}

usepackage

{

titlesec

}

titleformat

{

chapter

}

% command

[display]

% shape

{

bfseriesLargeitshape

}

% format

{

Story No.

thechapter

}

% label

{

0.5ex

}

% sep

{

rule

{

textwidth

}{

1pt

}

vspace

{

1ex

}

centering

}

% before-code

[

vspace

{

-0.5ex

}

%

rule

{

textwidth

}{

0.3pt

}

]

% after-code

titleformat

{

section

}

[wrap]

{

normalfontbfseries

}

{

thesection

.

}{

0.5em

}{}

titlespacing

{

section

}{

12pc

}{

1.5ex plus .1ex minus .2ex

}{

1pc

}

begin

{

document

}

chapter

{

Let's begin

}

section

{

First Attempt

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris...

section

{

Second attempt

}

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris...

end

{

document

}

 Open this titlesec example in Overleaf

Titlesecolv2.png

There are two general commands:

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titleformat

{

<command>

}

[<shape>]

{

<format>

}{

<label>

}{

<sep>

}{

<before-code>

}

[<after-code>]

where [<shape>] and [<after-code>] are optional parameters, and:

  • <command> is the sectioning command to be redefined: part, chapter, section, subsection, subsubsection, paragraph or subparagraph.
  • <shape> is sectioning paragraph shape; possible values are: hang, block, display, runin, leftmargin, rightmargin, drop, wrap, frame.
  • <format> is the format to be applied to the title, label, and text; for example normalfontLargebfseries
  • <label> specify sectioning label.
  • <sep> is the horizontal separation between label and title body and it must be a length and not be empty.
  • <before-code> is code preceding the title body.
  • <after-code> is code following the title body.

and

titlespacing

{

<command>

}{

<left>

}{

<before-sep>

}{

<after-sep>

}

where:

  • <left> increases the left margin.
  • <before-sep> is the vertical space before the title.
  • <after-sep> is the separation between title and non-sectioning text.

The starred version of this command (titlespacing*) kills the indentation of the paragraph following the title.

Further reading

For more information see:

See more articles in category: Psychology

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