Hege Library & Learning Technologies

PHYS 232 - Formal Experiment Proposal

A guide to help you develop a proposal for measuring an interesting constant.


As you conduct your research, you will want to maintain a BibTeX database file.  This is simply a text file that contains information about the sources you used in writing your paper.  When you compile your text document (see Compiling tab), LaTeX will make a list of the sources you cite and pull the appropriate entries out of the database.  It will also arrange the data in the format requested.  You don't need to worry about it.

The next box below contains a set of examples of what BibTeX data entries look like for different kinds of source media.  If a web site contains information that is taken from a print source, cite the print source.  Web sites alone (that don't have print equivalents) should be cited in footnotes using the \footnote{} command.

The box at the bottom of the page contains links to sites that give more information about BibTeX.

You should open a text file called YourName.bib (use your favorite text editor, but make sure you can save it as plain text).  If you are using Overleaf, you can add it to your project.  As you progress through your research, for every book or article you consult, you should add an entry to this database.  Don't worry at this point whether you think you will actually use the information or not.  Your database should contain more (perhaps many more) sources than you actually use.

Examples of BibTeX Entries

The following are examples of what BibTeX database entries might look like (taken from http://amath.colorado.edu/documentation/LaTeX/basics/steps/BIBtex.html, see link to right).  Note that each entry has a LABEL immediately after the first bracket, followed by a comma: "{LABEL,"  You will need to make your own labels.  You can save yourself some time in the long run if you invent a scheme for the labels that will enable you to write a label into your TeX document without having to look it up every time.

author = "D. H. Bailey and P. N. Swarztrauber",
title = "The fractional {F}ourier transform and applications",
journal = "SIAM Rev.",
volume = 33,
number = 3,
pages = "389--404",
year = 1991

author = "A. Bayliss and C. I. Goldstein and E. Turkel",
title = "An iterative method for the {H}elmholtz equation",
journal = "J. Comp. Phys.",
volume = 49,
pages = "443--457",
year = 1983

author = "O. Ernst and G. Golub",
title = "A domain decomposition approach to solving the {H}elmholtz
equation with a radiation boundary condition",
number = "NA-92-08",
school = "Stanford University, Computer Science Department",
year = "August 1992"

organization = "Fujitsu",
title = "FACOM OS IV SSL II USER'S GUIDE, 99SP0050E5",
year = 1990

author = "C. I. Goldstein",
title = "Multigrid methods for elliptic problems in unbounded domains",
journal = "SIAM J. Numer. Anal.",
volume = 30,
pages = "159--183",
year = 1993

author = "J. K. Hale",
title = "Theory of functional--differential equations",
publisher = "Springer--Verlag, Berlin--Heidelberg--New York",
year = 1977

author = "P. N. Swarztrauber",
title = "Vectorizing the {FFTs}",
editor = "G.~Rodrigue",
booktitle = "Parallel Computations",
publisher = "Academic Press, New York",
year = 1982

author = "S. Ta'asan",
title = "Multigrid Methods for Highly Oscillatory Problems",
school = "Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel",
year = "1984"

Links to More Information

The following links are to web sites that may be of use to you in establishing and maintaining your database.