1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data Write down a basis for the space of nxn symmetric matrices. 3. The attempt at a solution I just need to know what the notation for this sort of thing is. I understand what the basis looks like, and I was even able to calculate that it would have dimension (n/2)(n+1), but I can't think of how you're supposed to compactly write down an answer for this that isn't simply a rambling paragraph. For a given n, I could simply write down a whole bunch of matrices with ones and zeros in appropriate places. But for a general n, I don't know what the format would be.