Is there a way to get the n'th element of a list, e.g. an enumerate? Itemize, enumerate and others are all wrappers for the list environment, defined in the LaTeX kernel.

Regardless of the existence of the n'th element, I want to place the items into a tabular environment. The first thing to do would be to prevent the list environment from printing the items. I couldn't exactly grasp the how list operates with \item, but I would guess calling \item does not store the contents of that item in somewhere? And I also guess that what I want to do requires some hooks, since the items are going to be placed arbitrarily in an arbitrary tabular environment? Right, I'm a bit confused.

Further explanation: I want to create a multiple choice question environment with a flexible format. Look at here. {32} means 2 tabular environments, one with 3 and the other with 2 columns. I am modifying choices environment from the exam package.

  • 2
    Can you give an example of what you want to achieve?
    – Guido
    Oct 28, 2012 at 21:31
  • @Guido I edited the question with more explanation.
    – osolmaz
    Oct 28, 2012 at 21:41
  • 1
    Perhaps this might be helpful: onlyitems? How to select specific items from an item list. Oct 29, 2012 at 0:22
  • I did a workaround by writing from scratch, but answers are still welcome.
    – osolmaz
    Oct 29, 2012 at 9:50
  • 1
    @OnurSolmaz Why don't you post your workaround here?
    – egreg
    Dec 1, 2012 at 21:53

1 Answer 1


What I wanted to do was to create my own layout to typeset a multiple choice question. Since a multiple choice question is composed of a question body and a list of choices, it was logical to manipulate a Latex list derivative to suit my needs. I did not know my way around TeX Macros at the time, so I did not have a clue on how to do that.

I ended up modifying the environments from the exam package. I wanted to place the choices in flexible layouts, so I created two environments choices and choices*.

choices is a simplified version of its counterpart from the exam package. I just modified the spaces and choice label. (1 choice per line)

choices* allows you to create flexible layouts using the tabular environment. For example, if you have 5 choices, you may want to distribute it like 3x2 or 2x2x1, (3 choices for the first line, 2 choices for the second line, and vice versa).

I did it all by learning TeX ^^. I mean macros, counters and everything. I asked the question because I did not know how to use arrays, counters and for loops. Now that I know, my question seems irrelevant.

  • Ah, I remember when that first happened to me. The first bit of TeX programming I learned was \expandafter. Then I asked for the TeXbook as a birthday present...
    – Ryan Reich
    Dec 2, 2012 at 7:02

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