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I am trying to set up a multiple answer sheet with several short answers, but when I try to use the multicol environment, it creates unwanted whitspace.

The code is

\documentclass[11pt,addpoints]{exam}
\usepackage{amsfonts,amssymb,amsmath, amsthm}
\usepackage{graphicx}
\usepackage{systeme}
\usepackage{pgf,tikz,pgfplots}
\usepackage{multicol}
\pgfplotsset{compat=1.15}
\usepgfplotslibrary{fillbetween}
\usepackage{mathrsfs}
\usetikzlibrary{arrows}
\usetikzlibrary{calc}
\usepackage[shortlabels]{enumitem}
\usepackage{amsmath}
\newcommand{\summation}[2]{\sum\limits^{#1}_{#2}}

\begin{document}
\textbf{11)} The expression $\frac{\sin{x} + \sin{y}}{\cos{x} + \cos{y}}$ is equal to
    \begin{enumerate}[(A)]
    \begin{multicols}{2}
            \item $\tan{\frac{x + y}{2}}$ % CORRECT
        \item $\tan{\frac{x - y}{2}}$
        \item $2\tan{x + y}$
        \item $2\tan{x - y}$
        \item $2\tan{2 x y}$
        \end{multicols}
    \end{enumerate}
\end{document}

and it looks like this:

enter image description here

Any advice on how to solve the issue?

6
  • Welcome to TeX.SE.
    – Mico
    Commented Jan 30 at 23:42
  • I've taken the liberty of adding instructions to your LaTeX code to make it compilable. I've also moved the screenshot from an external server to the body of your query. Feel free to revert.
    – Mico
    Commented Jan 31 at 0:05
  • 1
  • @samcarter_is_at_topanswers.xyz - Thanks for pointing out the cross-posting issue.
    – Mico
    Commented Jan 31 at 0:10
  • 1
    Off-topic: There is no environment called multicol; the name of the environment is multicols. And, yes, it's a bit unfortunate that the multicols environment is provided by a package called multicol...
    – Mico
    Commented Jan 31 at 0:14

1 Answer 1

4

You need to remove the stretchiness (TeX jargon: "glue") that's built into the low-level itemsep parameter. This may be done by replacing \begin{enumerate}[(A)] with, say, \begin{enumerate}[(A),itemsep=1ex]. If you want to minimize the inter-item distance, use nosep instead of itemsep=1ex.

Do note that the macros \sin, \cos, and \tan don't take an argument delimited by curly braces. This point may seem harmless for \sin{x} and \cos{y}, which resolve to \sin x and \cos y, respectively. However, the instructions \tan{x + y}, 2\tan{x - y} and 2\tan{2 x y} may look right at first glance, but their output is wrong. For instance, \tan{x - y} resolves to \tan x - y, i.e., \tan might be taken to apply only to x, not to x - y. Hence, what you should be writing is \tan(x + y), 2\tan(x - y), and 2\tan(2 x y), respectively.

enter image description here

\documentclass[11pt,addpoints]{exam}
%% Note: I've stripped down the code to the bare essentials.
\usepackage{multicol}
\usepackage[shortlabels]{enumitem}

\begin{document}
\noindent
\textbf{11)} The expression $\frac{\sin x + \sin y}{\cos x + \cos y}$ is equal to
    \begin{multicols}{2}
    \begin{enumerate}[(A),itemsep=1ex]
        \item $\tan \frac{x + y}{2}$ % CORRECT
        \item $\tan \frac{x - y}{2}$
        \item $2\tan(x + y)$
        \item $2\tan(x - y)$
        \item $2\tan(2 x y)$
    \end{enumerate}
    \end{multicols}
\end{document}

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