TeX - LaTeX Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of TeX, LaTeX, ConTeXt, and related typesetting systems. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm new to LaTeX and trying to format my Honors Thesis, which has very specific formatting rules to prepare the manuscript for publication. For instance, on the Abstract page, I am required to place 3 blank lines above and below my name and degree information. At the moment, this is the code I have for the abstract page:




\vfill %Should be 3 blank lines here.

My name \\
My department \\
My degree


\vfill %Should be 3 blank lines here.

Put text of the abstract here.

%The abstract must not exceed 250 words.

As you can see, right now I'm just using the \vfill command, which I think looks spectacular but doesn't fulfill the formatting requirements exactly (although it gets pretty close when the abstract is 250 words). I've considered using the \vspace{} command, but I don't know how long 3 lines of text in Times New Roman size 12 font would be. Right now I'm using TeXShop to edit this document, which is a .Rnw file (I'm going to use Sweave). Right now, the default spacing is double-spacing (Most of the thesis is required to be in double-spacing) using the setspace package.

share|improve this question
\vspace{3\baselineskip}\vspace{-\parskip} should work. But your center-environment will add some space, use better \centering if you want to avoid this. – Ulrike Fischer Jul 18 '12 at 15:08
a new question that covers this same topic: [Function to define how many lines to be displayed](tex.stackexchange.com/questions/80328/] – barbara beeton Nov 4 '12 at 14:34
up vote 25 down vote accepted

Use \vspace*{3\baselineskip} command for getting your requirement

share|improve this answer
Thanks - that seemed to work, although I did add \vspace*{-\parskip} and changed to \centering rather than the \begin{center} environment, as suggested by Ulrike. I also found that switching to \singlespacing after the "My department" line, and then switching back to \doublespacing before the text of the abstract, was helpful. Thanks everyone! – drom Jul 18 '12 at 17:08

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.