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Doctoral School for Health & Life Sciences

Doctoral training

Doctoral School for Health & Life Sciences

Logo UHasselt Universiteit Hasselt - Knowledge in action


Many (most) researchers make their figures for publication in PowerPoint. The workshop starts that way. Then we go through the "Instructions to Authors" of a journal and stumble upon a number of problems (ppi, resolution, resizing issues, etc). Step by step, we explain these terms and give advice on how to deal with them. In the end, everyone should be able to make a publication worthy figure even in PowerPoint (certainly possible if you know well in advance what you're doing).

Part 2 is about a number of additional technical aspects such as color depth (8 vs 16 bit), bitmaps vs. vectors, screen resolution, line art drawings, color space (CMYK vs. RGB) file formats, fonts ... This piece is less hands-on but an explanation of what these terms mean and how to use them (for scientists).

Part 3 deals with image editing. What can and what cannot be done from an ethical point of view. Background cleanup, increase contrast, exposure adjustments, crop, resize, etc. This part is also about scientific integrity supported by many examples from the past (scientific fraud and unwanted modifications). This part can be given as a hands-on course to exercise these functions in Photoshop or purely as a demo with theoretical arguments.
We also offer the option of giving a demo to make a figure from A to Z the recommended way (in our opinion) without too many workarounds. (This usually takes over an hour if everyone can work on his or her own computer)

Part 4 shows the importance of qualitative figures for the credibility of the scientist and how they do more than just communicate information. In this section we give some tips & tricks to put this into practice.

In brief:

  • With this basic hands-on introduction training you will gain basic knowledge on how to prepare your figures according to the standards of peer-reviewed journals.
  • We will teach you relevant understanding about pixels, color depth, print resolution and software that is suited for this.
  • Moreover we will also introduce you to the healthy way of image editing without stepping into the dark side of scientific fraud.

This workshop is taught by Luk Cox (somersault 18:24)


  • Prepare high quality, publication-ready figures
  • Discriminate between right and wrong image editing

Detailed Schedule

  • Pixels and colors
  • Files and extensions
  • Scanning and printing of images
  • Scientific images
  • Hands-on preparation of a ready to publish image


  • Image editing – do’s and don’ts
  • Popular image manipulation programs
  • Hands-on to image manipulation
  • Stand out of the crowd: design principles, tips & tricks

Important: please bring your own laptop to this workshop. If this is not possible, please contact Stefanie Kerkhofs (stefanie.kerkhofs@uhasselt.be)

For Whom?

  • PhD students and postdoctoral researchers


  • May 16, 2018 - 09:00-17:00


  • room B103, building D, Campus Diepenbeek


  • Registration is closed since April 19, 2018 
  • Max. 20 participants

Acknowledged as?

  • DS MLS:  category transferable skills - one compulsory elective course
  • DS ST: category 'scientific & generic communication' - one course about scientific and generic communication