# In a 2-columned document, how do you get a table to stretch across the entire width?

I'm working on a document that runs two columns of text down the page, like many scientific conference proceedings. However, I'd like for a table to run across the entire width of the page, as it is far too wide to fit into one column. How do I do this?

-

It may depend on your document class, but the usual way is to use table* in place of table.

\documentclass[twocolumn]{article}
\usepackage{lipsum}
\begin{document}
\begin{table*}
\centering
\begin{tabular}{|c|}
\Large This table is so wide that it needs to use both columns.
\end{tabular}
\end{table*}
\lipsum[1-10]
\end{document}

-
It might be worth adding that the only permitted position for table* and figure* floats is at the top of the page. Thus, if one tries to specify h or b to indicate the preferred location for "starred" floats, things aren't going to turn out well... – Mico Jul 27 '12 at 13:46