The front matter is the "envelope" of your document. The elements that make up the front matter introduce the reader to the body of your document. They help the reader understand a document's who, what, why, where, and how--the author, problem, argument, organization, and method. This first part of a document is, from the reader's standpoint, the most important. It tells him or her what your topic and purpose are, how your material is arranged, and where to locate items of interest. The front matter of reports, including theses, is enumerated in lowercase roman numerals.
The following table lists some typical elements contained in the front matter of various documents (y=yes; n=no; s=sometimes).
|Table of contents||y||n||y||n|
|List of figures||y||n||y||n|
|List of tables||y||n||y||n|
|List of terms||s||s||s||s|