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I am writing my Masters thesis in LaTeX. I'm using the university template which is quite complex so I haven't tweaked it much as I'm new to LaTeX. My problem is that the paragraph style here seems to be the default one for latex that uses indentations without any vertical spacing between the paragraphs. I like my paragraphs to not have indents but be separated with some spaces between them. So, I inserted the following in the preamble.

\setlength{\parindent}{0.0in}
\setlength{\parskip}{0.1in}

It worked alright but I ran into an unexpected problem. It kind of screwed my Abstract pages, TOC etc which are defined in the sty file that I don't want to mess around with. So, I would like for this style to occur only from my Introduction "section" and beyond not in the frontmatter. How can I have only the sections and subsections etc have this style without touching that on the other parts like abstract page, preface, TOC, reference etc.

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1  
I have never tried it myself, but does using the parskip package instead of your \setlengths help? (see also “Is there an easy way to have my whole document with a space between paragraphs rather than indentation?”.) –  Caramdir Nov 23 '10 at 1:45
7  
If the university has provided a style for you to use, is it really a good idea to go changing that? Also note that the majority of printed books you own probably use the "no skip and indent" style. There's a reason for that. –  Will Robertson Nov 23 '10 at 4:02

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

@sfactor - I don't know your thesis style, of course, but in most the following will work:

\documentclass{yourthesisclass}
\author{moi}
\title{Epigraphy Upon Stalagmites In Pre-Historic Europe}
\date{\today}
\begin{document}
\maketitle
\tableofcontents
\setlength{\parindent}{0pt}
\setlength{\parskip}{0.1in}
\include{thewholethesis}
\end{document}

So, the basic idea is to reset them after the frontmatter. You can do it in the text, no problem.

BTW, you can also go:

\parindent0pt
\parskip0.1in

in the same place.....

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1  
It can be good to add some stretchability in \parskip so that \flushbottom has some chance of succeeding. E.g., \setlength\parskip{12pt plus 4pt minus 2pt} or whatever, –  Will Robertson Nov 23 '10 at 7:29
    
@Will: +1, only that 12pt is usually just too much. –  Hendrik Vogt Nov 23 '10 at 13:56
    
Will, Thanks for pointing that out. –  bev Nov 23 '10 at 20:15

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