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Article Submission: Step 3 – Figures and Tables

Figures and Tables are one of the most important parts of a journal article! When people are skimming through articles, the presentation of data is a MAJOR factor in their decision to actually read the article versus move on.

So, make sure your Figures and Tables look amazing!


Figure Requirements

  • Figures must be high resolution, ~300 dpi (dots per inch)
  • ALL text in figures must be at 8-9 pt font when inserted into the Template
  • Figures must be inserted directly into the template AND submitted separately as individual .jpg or .png files.


Prepare your figures exactly as you want them to appear in the final publication.


  1. Start with the ORIGINAL image or data file (Excel, Matlab, Powerpoint, Illustrator, …)
  2. Adjust the overall figure size to match the size it needs to be in your manuscript, based on how much of the page it will take up in the formatted Template.
    • Single column: Maximum width is 3.3 inches (8.5 cm)
    • Double column: Maximum width is 7 inches (17.8 cm)
  3. Ensure that all text is in 8-9 pt font and that all lines and data points are sufficiently large or bold enough to be easily visible.
  4. Use saturated colors (eg. black instead of grey, etc).
  5. .For multi-part figures, each part must be labeled with A,B,C, etc. The figure should be submitted as a single file, not its individual components
    • You can use Powerpoint to lay out the figure exactly how you want it, with letter labels.
    • Click and drag to select all figure parts. Right-click and select “Group” to combine.
    • Right-click the grouped figure and select “Save as Picture”.
  6. Once you have made all the adjustments to your image, right click and save it as a lastname_figure01_large.jpg. If it is a supplemental figure, save it as lastname_supplemental01_large.jpg.

Repeat for all figures.

Think you already have figures ready? Perform this check first!

Print your manuscript! Or, if you can’t print, ensure that you’re viewing the document at 100% and are at a reasonable distance (~ 2 feet) from your computer screen.

  1. Does your figures look clean (not grainy or blurry)?
  2. Are the lines clearly visible (not faint)?
  3. Can you EASILY read all figure text (including axis labels, legends, etc)?
    • Is all figure text approximately the same size as the figure caption?
    • Does text look normal (not stretched or distorted)?

If you answered NO to any of these questions, go back to the original files and adjust (as described in “Tips” above). DO NOT resize a figure directly in Word.

If you answered YES to all of these questions, your figures are ready to submit!


Tables should be formatted directly in Word (DO NOT insert tables as an image).

Table text should all be 8 pt font.

Table of Contents Image

We also need an image to include in the journal’s Table of Contents!

This can be:

  • A new image, if you want to make something that summarizes your project. Prepare to single-column size and the same standards (resolution, text size, etc) as described above. Save as lastname_TOC.jpg.


  • One of your previous figure files. Just make another copy and rename it as lastname_TOC.jpg


Tables or plain text do not make great Table of Contents images.


We need a picture of you to include in your biography!

Make sure to submit a high-resolution image. Save as lastname_headshot.jpg.


A headshot should be a close-up…of your head! Please don’t submit full-body pictures.

Nobody else should be visible in your headshot (that’s a privacy violation!).

Headshots look best in front of a relatively plain background.

Are your figures ready?

Please move on to STEP 4 to finalize other submission criteria!