Since the dawn of time Elsevier recommended the elsarticle class for authors. Recently they started promoting the els-cas-templates bundle \rant{I have no idea why; elsarticle worked just fine} and the classes (cas-sc and cas-dc) started to bring users to the main site asking questions about their weird behaviour.

How should these questions be tagged?

Options that I can think of:

  1. Tag and add cas-sc and cas-dc to the description of the tag;
  2. Tag and add a suitable description to the tag (which contains none at the moment);
  3. Create a new tag for questions regarding this specific classes.

Option 1 seems weird to me because it would be misleading. Option 2 seems okay, but it would raise the question of “why aren't elsarticle questions tagged as well?”. Option three adds another tag to the soup of the site, which seems okay as well for me.

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    I'd vote for option 3. It seems to me that elsarticle and cas-... are sufficiently different to warrant a new tag. It might help to add cas-sc and cas-dc as tag synonyms for els-cas so that people using the document class name as tag are automatically pointed into the right direction. My justification for that goes pretty much along the lines of your reasoning in the last paragraph.
    – moewe
    May 1, 2019 at 6:03
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    The elsevier tag does not have all that many questions (9 at the moment). Maybe it would be possible to retag those questions with a more appropriate tag and destroy the elsevier tag.
    – moewe
    May 1, 2019 at 6:04
  • Last I saw on guide to authors including your link they say CAS is specialist (Elsarticle package is recommended) The problem is many users think they need a complex one because its "better" without confirming the requirement then want to make customisations because we will "do it for me" As the latest 2019 Ctan package is Elsarticle I suggest option 1 fits best as "natural" and to be encouraged
    – user170109
    May 1, 2019 at 17:58
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    @KJO According to ctan.org/tex-archive/macros/latex/contrib/elsarticle and ctan.org/tex-archive/macros/latex/contrib/els-cas-templates elsarticle only beats els-cas-templates by one day (2019-04-05 vs 2019-04-04), so I don't think that makes a strong case for elsarticle being the latest and therefore best choice. That said, the linked guide indeed seems to suggest to me that elsarticle is still the go-to class and that the new classes are only for more complex cases (whatever that means).
    – moewe
    May 1, 2019 at 21:03
  • My feeling is that cas-... styles mimic better / are the final print ("camera-ready") layouts, while elsarticle has options for initial manuscript submission and for reviewing, that look distinctively different, even if the content is the same. May 9, 2019 at 17:18
  • @OlegLobachev Ooh, certainly these new classes look much more like the print version of the article. However my rant is because Elsevier (if not all of it, at least the journals I have experience with) doesn't take any of the author layout into account. Once your manuscript is accepted they put the raw text in their layout system which does the dirty work, so these new classes are, in my opinion, pointless. (fun(?) story: I had a macro, \tom, which expanded to \textsc{Tomawac}. In the proofread version of the article all occurrences of \tom were replaced in the text by just “tom” :) May 9, 2019 at 18:42
  • @PhelypeOleinik That's awfulm my condolences. My experience with Elsevier was not that radically bad. I guess it depends on the journal, they might have more than one processing pipeline at large, as huge as they are. By rumours, some of those pipelines involve XML and other ugly things. May 9, 2019 at 19:08
  • @OlegLobachev It's not that big an issue, of course. They are not bad at all, actually. I just don't see the point of these new classes if they they don't use their features at all. May 9, 2019 at 19:12

2 Answers 2


Turned my comment into an answer so it can be downvoted as well.

I'd vote for option 3, that is to say a new tag . It seems to me that elsarticle and cas-... classes are sufficiently different to warrant a new tag. elsarticle is thoroughly LaTeX2e, while els-cas makes heavy use of LaTeX3's expl3 and xparse.

It might help to add and as tag synonyms for so that people using the document class name as tag are automatically pointed into the right direction.

My justification for that goes pretty much along the lines of your reasoning in the last paragraph. Especially if Elsevier intends elsarticle and els-cas to be used in parallel for some time it is useful to have questions properly separated between the two classes.

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    Oops, wrong button ;) May 1, 2019 at 20:44
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    Especially the synonyms seem like a good idea.
    – Skillmon
    May 1, 2019 at 22:03

Tag elsevier seems a good solution rather than specific tags for each separate class, template package, etc., as it seems they are expanding them. I have recently seen this one for journals with "microarticles" like Results in Physics. It's the first I know that includes the full "Elsevier heading" in the template:

Microarticle template

If they keep expanding, seems better to have an overall tag to encompass all of them.

  • That 2016 version is used for RINP micro articles with older elsarticle as seen above so my guess it is covered by master version updates since 2019 version of that page still references elsartice (not specialist complex CAS ones)
    – user170109
    May 11, 2019 at 1:10
  • That might make sense if Elsevier come up with a new class for every single one of their journals, but at the moment it looks to me as though they basically only have elsarticle and the new cas- thingies. Since those classes are so very different it seems useful to be able to keep them apart.
    – moewe
    May 12, 2019 at 7:47

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