Introduction > Writing Scientifically > How to Use Figures, Tables and Plates > Quality and Uniformity

Quality and Uniformity

Screen imageOne of the biggest issues with using figures, tables and plates is the quality of the material that's used.

Scanning work from hard copies can degrade the image considerably, resulting in fuzzy lines and unreadable text. Electronic material may be of a higher quality than scanned images, but be careful of the resolution, particularly if you're using photographs. If you're taking photographs of your work, set the photo quality to high or super high.

Lack of quality is more often seen in the Results section, when graphs and tables are imported from Excel. To overcome this, try copying your image, then 'paste-special' it into Word as a Picture (enhanced metafile). This does mean, however, that if you make any changes to your graph/table that you have to you re-copy and paste the image.

Within reason, you should maintain consistency in the size of your figures and plates. Again, this is most important in the Results section where it's not uncommon to have several graphs on the same page. Your work will look more professional and much tidier if your graphs are aligned and the same size.

Try it yourself. Using tabular data, present the results in an appropriate graph
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