Math Support: MathJax, LaTeX, MathML

Last update: Feb 21/20

Pressbooks offers two different methods to create mathematical equations in your books: MathJax and QuickLaTeX. Each method has an array of options and benefits.

MathJax is an open source JavaScript display engine that translates mathematical markup (LaTeX and MathML) into high resolution, accessible equations that can render in any supported book format on Pressbooks.

NOTE: MathJax has replaced PB LaTeX on all hosted PressbooksEDU networks. Equations written in PB LaTeX are still compatible with MathJax and should continue to display. Open source Pressbooks network administrators may need to install a microservice to enable LaTeX rendering in exported files.

Must LaTeX (or MathML) be used for all equations?

A commonly asked questions is: Must LaTeX be used for all equations, even simple ones?
Not necessarily. If the numbers, symbols and letters needed for an equation are available on a standard keyboard and can be entered in a clear manner, then LaTeX is not required. Instead, LaTeX can be reserved for complex formulas and equations, including fractions.

The Pressbooks User Guide makes this suggestion:

If LaTeX is a bit much for you or you’d rather look at other options, you can always use special characters, symbols, and the sub/superscript buttons on the toolbar to compose your equations.

If you are fluent in HTML+CSS, you can also look at constructing and formatting your formulas that way.

"" For more information, see Math in Pressbooks in the Pressbooks User Guide.

Other LaTeX resources


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NSCC Guide to Using PressbooksEDU by BCcampus is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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