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Many of the features of a LATEX document are easily customised, but you'll often have to look at the class (.cls) files to find out what to do. For example, suppose you wanted to have References in a book rather than Bibliography. If you look in book.cls you'll see
so adding
to your file should achieve what you want.

Counters (e.g. figure) have related commands (e.g. thefigure) to control their appearance, so they're easy to customise

produces figure numbers in lower case roman numerals. Longer commands can be adapted too. Remember however, that if the command involves a @ you have to enclose your changes in \makeatletter ... \makeatother. Here's an example that changes the appearance of section headings -

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