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So I am currently in my senior year (Undergraduate mathematics). And I am thinking to continue on and do my masters and PHD in mathematics. I need to now how important it is to learn latex and how often will I get to use it as a graduate student in Mathematics. I noticed it is not very important in my undergraduate studies because I am not publishing papers but of course when I do my graduate studies , it's all about research and publishing papers. I saw many people in this website asking graduate level questions and their latex skills are not very good and sometimes I can't even read the question until someone edits it.

Also I didn't see any course in any undergraduate math degree that teaches how to use latex so is it a self learning skill? So any graduate school will just assume that you know how to use latex?

I am assuming anyone doing a graduate degree has enough motivation to learn many skills on his own. Does that include learning latex ?

Also I need to know , did anyone have any difficulty in his graduate studies because he wasn't that good in latex ?

A final question, if latex is pretty important for mathematicians, why just not include a course in all universities that teaches how to use latex, even forcing the students to submit their assignments using latex?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Najib Idrissi, Clayton, graydad, quid, Davide Giraudo Aug 31 '15 at 15:10

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ I think it would be more appropriate if you had asked such question in Latex section of SE $\endgroup$ – FreeMind Jun 2 '15 at 8:42
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    $\begingroup$ I think it would be more appropriate to ask at Academia S.E.. $\endgroup$ – Git Gud Jun 2 '15 at 8:46
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    $\begingroup$ In my honest opinion, this is a non-issue. You do need to learn $\LaTeX$ eventually, but it's not that big a challenge that you should worry about it. It's just something you do like eating and showering. $\endgroup$ – Git Gud Jun 2 '15 at 8:47
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    $\begingroup$ If you can finish a MSc or even a PhD in math, then you can learn LaTeX in one afternoon. $\endgroup$ – Thomas Jun 2 '15 at 8:50
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    $\begingroup$ At my university there are two LaTeX courses, one for the humanities and one for mathematics and computer science (I deliver the latter). They're not mandatory, though. As a mathematician, you definitely should learn it: look at dickimaw-books.com/latexresources.html for some good guides in English. $\endgroup$ – egreg Jun 2 '15 at 8:53
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As a point of reference, every HW assignment I did in graduate school I typeset with Latex. This wasn't required, but it helped for a number of reasons. First, it is more difficult to draw pictures when you use latex. This makes you think twice before attempting to argue-by-picture... in my opinion, that is a big plus. Second, at my school at least, it was required (whether you were in mathematics or not) that your thesis/dissertation be typeset using latex. (So it was required to learn at least enough to do basic typesetting.) Third, knowing latex makes it possible to write research papers. Many journals will take other formats, but many do not.

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    $\begingroup$ I completely agree, specially on thinking twice when it comes to graphics. +1 $\endgroup$ – FreeMind Jun 2 '15 at 9:06
  • $\begingroup$ Figures are no problem in TeX. Draw them with any graphics program and import them into your TeX-document as eps- or pdf-file with some special command. $\endgroup$ – Christian Blatter Jun 2 '15 at 9:39
  • $\begingroup$ I still draw figures periodically; I like tikz/pgf a lot. It just takes a little more forethought when creating the figures than "scribbling down" something with pen/paper. I don't mean to imply that pictures are bad, just that they should illustrate an argument not "be" the argument. $\endgroup$ – TravisJ Jun 2 '15 at 10:19
  • $\begingroup$ @TravisJ. I've heard that it doesnt matter in scientific community if you use Word or Latex for writing a report or anything else. Is that True? $\endgroup$ – mehrdad Jul 12 '16 at 4:51
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    $\begingroup$ @mehrdad, it probably depends on the specific community. If you write a math paper in word it will be really hard to find people who will take it seriously. Others communities I'm less familiar with. I know many CS conferences and bio-journals will accept submissions word format, but they tend to look much less professional in my opinion. $\endgroup$ – TravisJ Jul 12 '16 at 14:35
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I'd say that if you can finish a MSc or even a PhD in math, then you can learn the basics of LaTeX in one afternoon. Also, it seems you have used LaTeX in other questions on this site. Just keep going and learn whatever you need for the current project. From time to time read a tutorial to get inspired.

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