Templates can be very useful to starting any project. Many good templates can be found at the following sites:

If you are typesetting for a specific journal, then go to that journals site to download their particular template (and probably class file).

Package Info

These tables lists common packages that I use and a brief description of what they do. A quick search can find documentation and examples for all of these. I have roughly divided them into categories.

Graphics and Floats
Setup and Page Management
Package Functionality
amsfonts Special fonts for typesetting mathematics
amssymb Adds many symbols for math modes.
amsmath Contains mathematics extensions. Almost always used if there is mathematics in document.
amsthm Adds a proof environment and the \theoremstyle command.
bm Use bold font for math symbols.
cancel Allows striking out of mathematical expressions
Package Functionality
pgfplots Plotting package.
pgfplotstable Reads tab-separated numerical tables from input and produces tables.
float Allows custom placement of floats.
graphicx Allows importation of external pictures.
epstopdf Converts .eps files to .pdf and then imports them into document.
TikZ/GF Advanced drawing package.
subcaption/caption Use for subfigures and subcaptions in floats.
multirow/multicolumn Enhances table options.
Package Functionality
rotating Use for landscape pages.
babel Allows internationalization of LaTeX, can be loaded in any document and accepts the main language as an argument. A good idea to use in any document.
inputenc Choose encoding of input text. Helps when writing LaTeX in non-English languages.
ulem Allows underlining of text.
enumerate Allows enumeration by various symbols.
geometry Page management and layout.
hypperref Link within document or to outside URL.
appendix Modify typesetting of appendix titles.
natbib Advanced bibliography options.
color Enhanced support for colored text.
verbatim Allows code input and WYIWG-type input.
titlesec Manage look and spacing of section delineations.

Table of Contents

Created by Zachary Glassman. Contact at