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Morphometrics Workshop, SSSDay 2020

[This page concerns the Morphometrics Workshop which forms part of this year’s SSSDay. The workshop takes place on Thursday, 5th November, the scientific meeting on Friday, 6th November. To register for the scientific meeting, please go to our main webpage.]

Due to Covid-19 and in order to make this workshop available to as many participants as possible, this workshop will be held

online only!

If you have your own data that you would like to analyze during the workshop, you should register as an active participant. It is also possible to register as a passive participant, if you just would like to listen into the lecture parts.


Morphometrics, i.e. the analysis of size and shape, penetrates most of organismal biology. Be it the shape of a flower or the size of a fin – as systematists, we always need to quantify the phenotype. This hands-on morphometrics workshop gives an overview on the topic and lets you work with modern software tools (Multivariate Ratio Analysis with R, MorphoJ ). We will have a look at the evaluation of distance measurements as well as two-dimensional landmark-based Geometric Morphometrics and find out how to combine both approaches. You are welcome to bring your own data!

Software: R ( and R-studio (, MorphoJ (

Deadline for registration

For active participation (for people who have their own datasets): Friday, 23. October 2020

Passive participant: Tuesday, 3. November 2020

Registration for Morphometrics Workshop, 5. November 2020

Registration as active participant (with own dataset)Registration as passive participant

If you register as an active participant, please provide a few sentences about your dataset and the scientific question you try to answer below, and send your dataset to!
If the dataset is chosen as an example, you will get it evaluated and analyzed by an expert during the workshop!

Instructions for (active) participants

Requirements for participation: For those who would like to participate interactively, the software should be preinstalled on your computer and running smoothly. We will not have the time for the installation. With respect R, it would be helpful to have a firm knowledge about R-basics (at the level of a basic course for biologists). Of course it is also possible to follow the workshop simply as a guest – in which case you should choose the „passive“ option in the form above.

Submission of of your data:  Participants are invited to submit their own data to be analyzed in the workshop – which means you will get an expert to evaluate your data! Right after registering, please send your dataset to!

Applications will be sighted before and a few selected for the workshop.

In case your data is selected, we will contact you and ask for the following:

– A couple of slides that introduces the aims and scope of your project (as a PDF < 5 MB; style and extend should be the same as for a short presentation of 15 minutes).

–  the dataset either

—- in the form of distance measurements in form of raw values (in µm, mm, cm etc., no ratios!). Please check how such a data set should be structured in case of distance measurements here:,
—- or a set of 2D landmarks in form of x- and y-coordinated (check the basic requirements here

– Data should be submitted as CSV, XLS, or XLSX files

Individual preparation: If you want to make the most out of the workshop, consider working through the following tutorials:

– Baur, Hannes, & Leuenberger, Christoph. (2020, June 13). Multivariate Ratio Analysis (MRA): R-scripts and tutorials for calculating Shape PCA, Ratio Spectra and LDA Ratio Extractor (Version 1.02). Zenodo.
– For landmark data, the above mentioned MorphoJ User’s Guide is a good starting point.