MCEM Online Courses

The Monash Centre for Electron Microscopy is now offering a suite of online courses on different aspects of electron microscopy and related topics. Currently available courses are the following:

Scanning electron microscopy

  • Introduction to SEM (for new trainees)
  • Introduction to SEM: sample preparation (for new trainees)
  • Low voltage imaging in SEM:  Beam deceleration
  • Low voltage imaging in SEM:  Practical imaging strategy + live demo
  • Low voltage imaging in SEM:  Chromatic aberration/UC mode & STEM

Lecturers: Dr Xiya Fang and Dr Zhou Xu

Focused ion beam

  • Introduction to FIB
  • Tomography
  • Thin lamella preparation

Lecturers: Dr Yang Liu and Dr Yu Chen

Transmission electron microscopy

  • Electron diffraction in the TEM: a series of lectures covering basic optics, electron scattering, Bragg diffraction through to selected area and convergent beam electron diffraction in the TEM.

Lecturer: Dr Tim Williams

Computational methods for electron microscopy

  • ImageJ/FIJI – Introduction to digital imaging and image processing

Lecturers: Dr Yang Liu and Dr Zhou Xu

Crystallography for electron microscopists

  • The basics: what is crystallography and what is it useful?
  • Symmetry
  • How to build a crystal structure
  • Planes and directions
  • Towards diffraction: the reciprocal lattice
  • Crystallography Do It Yourself: self-directed computational laboratory using VESTA software

Lecturer: A/Prof. Laure Bourgeois

Each course will involve one or more live online lecture(s)/tutorial(s)/demos() delivered via Zoom. These courses are available to all MCEM users upon registration. Registration details are below.



10:00 - 11:00 AM

11:30 - 12:30 PM

2:00 - 3:00 PM

Wed 27 May

Crystallography - 'Basics'

Crystallography - 'Symmetry'


Thurs 28 May

SEM - 'Introduction to SEM 1'

SEM - 'Introduction to SEM 2'


Wed 3 May

TEM - 'Electron Diffraction 1'


Thurs 4 June

SEM - 'Sample Preparation'


Wed 10 June

Crystallography - 'Build a Crystal Structure'

Crystallography - 'Planes and Directions'


Thurs 11 June

SEM - 'Low kV SEM 1'


ImageJ / FIJI 1

Wed 17 June


Thurs 18 June

TEM - 'Electron Diffraction 2'


SEM - 'Low kV SEM 2'

Wed 24 June

Crystallography - 'The Reciprocal Lattice'

'Crystallography - 'DIY Lab' 

Thurs 25 June

SEM - 'Low kV SEM 3'


ImageJ / FIJI 2

Wed 1 July

TEM - 'Electron Diffraction 3'

Thurs 2 JulyFIB ImageJ / FIJI 3
Wed 8 JulyTEM - 'Electron Diffraction 4'  
Thurs 9 July  ImageJ / FIJI 4

Registration Details:

To register for a MCEM Online Course, please email Laure Bourgeois at specifying:

  1. Your name and affiliation.
  2. Which course(s) you wish to attend.
  3. Which MCEM equipment you are licensed on, if any.

MCEM Hands-On Training Courses

MCEM offers a range of courses, some of which are necessary to complete successfully before gaining access to the electron microscopes.

  • Introduction to Scanning Electron Microscopy: Theory and Applications in Physical Sciences
  • Fundamentals of Dual Beam Microscopy: Applications on a Qaunta 3D FEG
  • Fundamentals of Electron Backscatter Diffraction (EBSD)
  • Introduction to Transmission Electron Microscopy
  • Introduction to Crystallography in Electron Microscopy
  • Introduction to Electron Diffraction in the TEM

Your training needs will be identified during your initial New Project Interview.

Introduction to Scanning Electron Microscopy: Theory and Applications in Physical Sciences (Required to access MCEM SEMs)

The scanning electron microscope (SEM) basic training course comprises both theory and hands on training, beginning with a 15 minute open book test based on the instrument's user guide carried out using the Monash MOODLE online system.

The first day of training begins with 6 hours of lectures on SEM theory, sample preparation and X-ray generation. This is followed by 2 x 3 hour "hands-on" sessions working in groups of 2, covering basic operation through to optical system alignment. Training continues with 1 hour of one-on-one training, reinforcing the previous work including secondary electron (SE) imaging, back-scattered electron (BSE) imaging and X-ray analysis. The 1 hour practical test follows, in addition to a 30 minute closed book written test based on the study notes and previous lecture.

After successfully completing the practical and theoretical test, a final 1 hour session is booked with the trainer to observe the user's sample and determine optimal operating conditions.

Introduction to Transmission Electron Microscopy (Required to access MCEM TEMs)

All new TEM users start with Tecnai T20 TEM training.

TEM Training Prerequisites: TEM applicants will need to take a short online general background course (at undergraduate level) and pass a CLOSED BOOK multiple-choice quiz using the Monash MOODLE online system.

Trainees attend a TEM induction typically held on a Wednesday. This includes a 3 hour lecture in the morning, followed by 1.5 hours in the lab in the afternoon. Following the TEM induction  trainees must pass a 15 minute open book test based on the instrument's user guide carried out using MOODLE.

Practical training is completed on the trainees samples. Practical training is divided into two parts.

  1. Part One: Sample evaluation and basic training which can be 1 to 4 x 2 hours sessions.
  2. Part Two: CORE business hours training, 3-6 x 2 hour sessions.

During these sessions practical competence will be assessed, ensuring safe and effective use of the TEM can be made.

Following successful completion of the practical training a 30 minute closed book test on Moodle is to be completed.

Specimen Preparation Training

Specimen preparation for microscopy can be a very complex and time-consuming process. The number of training sessions required may range from one or two for the simpler techniques, to five or more for the difficult techniques.