The following table includes
geometric, trigonometric, probability, and aditional algebraic notation.

Type-set formatting

Text-only formatting

Notes

sin(x)

sin(x)

Put parentheses around the argument
of any function, including sine and cosine.

sin^{2}(x)

sin^2(x)

If you're squaring the sine, put
the power on the sine.

sin(2x)

sin(2x)

Use parentheses to make clear that
you mean "sine of 2x",
not "the square of the sine of x".

°

degrees °

To indicate "degrees",
either write the word out or (on a PC), hold down the "ALT"
key and type "0176" to insert the character directly.

theta @

As long as you define yourself, it's
okay to use "@" for "theta". Otherwise, spell
it out, or pick a Latin letter.

beta ß

You can (on a PC) insert a character
similar to "beta" by holding down the "ALT"
key and typing "0223" on the numeric keypad. Otherwise,
spell out the name, or replace "beta" in your exercise
with a Latin letter.

pi

Do not use "m" or "n"
to stand for "pi", since m and n are variables and pi
is a number. Instead, spell out the name. (And please spell it correctly.
It's "pi", not "pye" or "pie".) You
may find it helpful to use parentheses, as in "sin[(2/3)(pi)]".

i

i

When writing complex numbers, just
use the "i"
as usual.

e

e

The natural exponential e
is a commonly-known value, just like pi. You don't have define what
e is
in your post.

cis(x)

cos(x) + isin(x) cis(x)

Not everybody is familiar with the
"cis" notation. If you use it, define it first, so they
know you mean what is shown in the first line.

angle A <A

If you use the "less-than sign,
angle name" format, define what you mean. Otherwise, you'll
leave people wondering what, exactly, is less than A.

measure of A m(A)

If you use "m(A)",
state that this means "the measure of angle A".

m-choose-n mCn

Most tutors are familiar with the
"mCn"
abbreviation for the formula for combinations, but it wouldn't
hurt to define it if you use it.

m-permute-n mPn

Most tutors are familiar with the
"mPn"
abbreviation for the formula for permuations, but it wouldn't
hurt to define it if you use it.

(2, 3)

(2,3)

Use parentheses around points. Other
symbols (or no symbols) mean other things.

[2, inf.) [2, infinity)

The abbreviation "inf."
in the context of intervals (and limits) is commonly understood
to mean "infinity", but you can spell it out completely,
if you'd like. Just don't try to approximate the "infinity"
symbol with two lower-case O's, as this is very confusing.

<2, 3>

You can use the "less than"
and "greater than" signs for vectors.

u-dot-v u * v

As long as you define the asterisk
to mean the dot product, you can use this for dotting two vectors.
Use generous spacing.

u-cross-v u × v

Don't use the letter "X"
between the vectors, as this will be confused as being a third vector.
Instead, either spell out "cross" or else (on a PC) hold
down the "ALT" key and type "0215" on the numeric
keypad, using generous spacing so your meaning is clear.

A^{T}

A^T

Write the transpose of a matrix using
superscript notation.

A^{–1}

A^(-1)

Write the inverse of a matrix using
superscript notation.

[[1 2 3] [4 5 6] [7 8 9]]

Matrices are just about impossible
to format with text. The bracket design, using outer brackets for
the matrix and inner brackets for the rows, has arisen from graphing-calculator
notation. Be sure to say what you mean by this, and try to use "CODE"
or "PRE" tags or a fixed-width font.

||1 2 3| |4 5 6| |7 8 9||

Determinants are also hard to format
with only text. Use bars (the "pipe" character, shown
as a broken line on your keyboard, somewhere above the "Enter"
key) to delineate the rows.

|A|

det(A) |A|

If you use the absolute-value-bar
notation for the determinant, state what you mean.

sum[i=1,n][a_i] sigma[1,n][a_i]

Whatever notation you use for a summation,
be sure to define what you mean by restating the first summation
in words.

Stapel, Elizabeth.
"Formatting Math as Text: Other Math Notation." Purplemath.
Available from http://www.purplemath.com/modules/mathtext3.htm.
Accessed