Tables and Figures

  • The word “table” is used for tabulated numerical data in the body of the thesis or dissertation and in the appendices.
  • The word “figure” designates all other illustrative material used in the body and in the appendices, including graphs, charts, drawings, images, diagrams, schematic illustrations of experimental apparatus, etc.
  • Tables and figures can be either digitally native or scanned from a physical copy. If they are digitally native they can be imported at a minimum of 300dpi.  If they are scanned, the source file should be at a minimum of 600dpi. They must be legible and reproducible on microfilm. 
  • Images and oversized pages should, if possible, be reduced to standard 8 ½ ” × 11” size; however, page numbers and captions must be the same size as the rest of the text (not reduced). Oversized pages will not print properly with the rest of the document; if oversized pages are important to the dissertation, they should be created as separate files, uploaded as supplementary files, and linked to the text. All supplementary files must be captioned in accordance with these guidelines.
  • Because the archival copies of dissertations are stored on microfilm by ProQuest, and on microfilm most colors appear as grey, not natively digital photographs should be scanned from black and white photographic originals or from well-done black and white photographic copies of the originals. To minimize loss of content, crosshatching or other markings may be necessary to indicate color distinctions in dissertations. Digitized color photographs may be included as separate files; links to these files must be included in the body of the ETD, minimally in the List of Figures and at the appropriate point or points in the text. However, since the PDF copy of the ETD is archived by ProQuest as well, students may include color within their ETD if they decide that the benefits of color in the ETD outweigh the problems caused with microfilming color. 
  • Images must conform to the margin specifications. Page numbers and captions must appear in the required locations.
  • Tables and figures of a half-page or less in length may appear on the same page with the text, separated from the text above or below by approximately one double-spaced paragraph return. If they exceed a half-page in length, they should be placed on a separate page. Two or more small tables or figures may be placed on a single page.
  • Table numbers and captions are placed two spaces above the top line of the table. 
  • Figure numbers and captions are placed two spaces below the last line or bottom edge of the figure. 
  • The placement of the table or figure does not affect the position of the page number. 
  • Tables and figures are numbered in separate series. Each table and figure, including any in the appendices, has a number in its own series. Each series is numbered consecutively in Arabic numerals, e.g., Figure 10, Figure 11, Figure 12, etc.; or within chapters, e.g., Figure 10.1, Figure 10.2, Figure 10.3, etc. 
  • If a table continues to the following page, the top line should read “Table 10 (continued).” The caption is not repeated.


  • Captions, or descriptive titles of tables and figures, should be kept to one line if possible. 
  • These captions will appear in the preliminary pages as the List of Tables or List of Figures, as well as in the bookmarks panel. 
  • To add a longer caption description please refer to this Adding Caption Descriptions in our Creating Captions guide.
  • When referring to a table or figure in the text, the full word and number should be used, e.g., Table 10 or Figure 6.