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Are there any recommendations against having text in a section when it's followed by subsections but that itself isn't in a subsection? For example, compare

Case A:

CHAPTER 1: Title of chapter 1

Section 1: Title of section 1

content of section 1

Section 2: Title of section 2

content of section 2

Case B:

CHAPTER 1: Title of chapter 1

content of chapter 1 that is neither in Sec. 1 nor Sec. 2 <--- is this "proper" formatting?

Section 1: Title of section 1

content of section 1

Section 2: Title of section 2

content of section 2

As you can see, Case B, has text that isn't at the lowest possible "level". (Here, I'm user chapter-section, but the same could be said of section-subsection.)

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  • Whoever down-voted, could you please provide an explanation as to how my question is irrelevant? That would actually be constructive for once.
    – Tfovid
    Mar 22, 2022 at 15:56

2 Answers 2

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In fact, text is always in a "section" if you think about it. It's just that the Case B in the question starts the chapter with an untitled section, followed by titled sections. All that's being omitted is the title or heading on the first section of the chapter. I know from experience this is common, and perhaps more common than labeling the first section "Introduction", "Overview", or something similar.

In general, when a book or paper uses section headings, the hierarchy should be maintained -- sections shouldn't jump from h1 to h3 without an h2. However, it also seems redundant to have a heading immediately after a chapter title just for the sake of never having a section without a section heading.

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Looking at various textbooks I have laying around, Type B seems to be pretty common.

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