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Computer Science

Academic writing and LaTeX


Writing Guides

The ability to write and communicate clearly is crucial to academic success. The Library holds many books and ebooks that will help you with your scientific writing and with using subject-specific software and programming languages.

The Academic Phrasebank (link to the right) is a highly-recommended resource for academic writers. It aims to provide you with examples of some of the phraseological ‘nuts and bolts’ of writing organised according to the main sections of a research paper or dissertation.

In addition, the University's Study Skills service is there to assist with your studies and to help develop and enhance the skills that will make you better prepared for university.



LaTeX is the de facto standard software to write scientific reports. It is an add-on to the famous TeX program by Donald Knuth, and gives it a more friendly and approachable face. You can use LaTeX to produce high-quality printed technical material that look better than anything produced in Word. It also helps you keep track of references to equation numbers, bibliographies, and tables of contents automatically. It can handle graphics too.

To get started with LaTeX without installing any software, the Library, together with the School of Mathematics and the Faculty of Engineering, offer an enhanced subscription to Overleaf. Overleaf is an easy-to-use, online, collaborative LaTeX editor. You can sign up for your free account using your UoB email address.

Some useful library books, ebooks and other online resources:

Writing guides

Academic Phrasebank


Study Skills service


Online LaTeX editor and publishing tool

Guide to LaTeX

Interactive tutorial from beginner to more advanced