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Chalk Talk: Visualising your Scientific Ideas and Research with Simple Hand-Drawn Sketches

Target group

Postdoctoral researchers of all faculties who want to learn how to interactively present their research with hand-drawn sketches.



Master the art of visualising complex ideas and research results with simple sketches. As the Chalk Talk format becomes increasingly popular in research job interviews, it is essential to learn best-practice techniques for visualising scientific ideas and research projects. In this workshop, you will learn the basics of visual communication and how to use sketches, diagrams, and graphs in order to break down key messages and convey them to your audience. We will work with, while also considering and discussing how you can visualise concepts based on hand-drawn sketches. On top of that, you will learn to simplify complex subjects and ideas as well as connect words with images, using geometrical shapes, lines, arrows, and frames.

Through numerous practical exercises, you will develop your individual style of visualising and will then compare your representations with those of the other participants. By the end of the workshop, you will have a toolbox of simple and practical techniques to apply in future Chalk Talks and other similar presentations. This workshop is 100% interactive and practical, so please get ready to actively participate in the class and have fun!


Key aspects

  • Simplifying complex subjects and ideas by connecting words with images with the 3-steps model
  • Using geometrical shapes, lines, arrows, and frames to link different ideas
  • Understanding the basics of visual communication and colour psychology
  • Developing your own style of visualisation, using the two main styles
  • Learning best-practice techniques to appear confident and relaxed during your presentation


Intended results of the workshop

At the end of the workshop, you will...

  • be familiar with the fundamentals of sketching and straightforward visualisation techniques, whether using online tools or hand-drawn sketches on paper and whiteboards.
  • be able to explain key aspects of your research projects through simple and clear messages and with simple sketches.
  • infuse a novel visual dimension into scientific presentations, lectures, and job interviews



  • Practical individual and group exercises
  • Concise creative sessions
  • Structured group discussions to reflect on new ideas and concepts
  • Practical input, supervision, and guidance from the trainer






Dr. Michael Gordian |


7.5 hours


Tue, 09 July 2024, 9:30 am – 5:00 pm


Please register via the campus management portal HISinOne.


FRS Seminar Room, Friedrichstr. 41-43, 2nd floor

Max. number of participants