Lab Report - Writing Guide With Format and Example
Struggling with your lab reports, worried they will ruin your grades?
Don’t worry, here's a complete guide to help you start and compose lab reports successfully.
1. Lab Reports
Laboratory reports are a necessary part of the courses that require essential lab tests and experiments. They are usually scientific and objective in nature.
It is a complete record of an experiment. The information provided in a lab report is specific enough that the reader gets a clear picture of the experiment carried out by the researcher.
A lab report has many parts from the title page, abstract, introduction, methodology, and conclusions.
1.1 Lab Report Example (PDF)
1.2. Sample Lab Report (PDF)
2. How To Write A Lab Report?
So before you start to write a lab report, we should first understand what a lab report contains?
The lab report consist of the context of the study. It contains the pertinent background and information about the experiment. It should be written in passive past tense and lastly it should contain the methods applied; almost two to three paragraphs upon the experiment was conducted.
Learn how to write a lab report with these steps.
2.1 Lab Report Format
The report consists of a thread of claims and information linking the introduction to the content in the discussion. Organization is the founding stone of any lab report. Information organized in a meaningful manner reflects the purpose and the objectives of the report.
Here’s a format for you to compose your lab reports successfully.
The title page will include:
- The experiments title.
- The name of the researcher and other group members
- The instructor’s name
- The date the lab took place and the date the report is being submitted.
The title explains what is being performed and it should state the purpose of the experiment. It describes the central idea of the investigation. Make sure that it doesn't exceed more than 10 words.
The abstract is present at the beginning of the report. Although this part of the report is located at the beginning, it is written at the end. The abstract delivers a succinct and a complete summary of the report.
The abstract should be 150 words in all. They should introduce the experiment, elaborate upon the main aim of the study, methodology, data calculations, discussion, key findings, previous research.
Along with the significance of the experiment should be discussed briefly in the abstract.
The introduction states the objectives and purpose of the experiment. Briefly present the background information, how the experiment was carried out, findings and hypothesis.
The introduction should very define the goals of the experiment. They should be supported through the literature review by the researcher. It is pertinent to identify the difference between the goals and the hypothesis.
The next step is to identify and enlist each and everything such as surveys, computer equipment, word list and other materials you need to complete this experiment.
The lab report shall provide steps to complete during the investigation. This is how the experiment is going to be held. Details are central to this step. You are to assume that the reader has no knowledge of how to conduct the experiment.
Your research methodology should act as a lab manual. It should enable the readers to replicate the experiment.
The following sub headings are always present with the method section of lab report.
- Experimental Design
- Procedures (Process and Steps)
The results section is usually comprised of the descriptive statistics followed by their inferential statistics. Data is usually in numerical form which is then presented to the audience in a tabular form.
Do not include any raw data. Make sure you put the figures correctly within the table.
The findings of the numerical values and figures that are interpreted in the discussion section to determine their analysis, are then associated with the hypothesis of your study. The results are then compared to the hypothesis.
The discussion is also inclusive of suggestive ways to improve the study, it leads to impressive findings and conclusions.
The conclusion is the synthesis of the thesis, the key points and the implications and interpretations for the subject. The conclusion is the last paragraph of the report which suggests if the hypothesis was accepted or rejected.
Figure And Graphs
The figures and graphs are related to the content and labeled with a descriptive title. The axes are carefully drafted and measured. The X-axis shows the independent variable while the Y-axis shows the dependent variable.
If there has been a number of sources reviewed and taken information from, the works of other writers need to be cited within the text. It requires accurate, documentation and then a list of references at the end of your thesis.
The most popular format for references among thesis is the APA Style. Have a look at these APA formats to help you with your references.
Author, A. A. (year). Title of work. Location: Publisher
- Journal Articles
Author, A. A., Author, B. B., & Author, C. C. (year). Article title. Journal Title, volume number(issue number), page numbers
3. Writing Tips
Here are some important pointers you must keep in mind when writing your lab report.
You should be very clear and concise when it comes to the content of the report.
No Personal Opinions
Support statements with data from your experiment. Do not state anything that is purely opinion or make any statement without evidence
Use Past Tense
Past tense should be used while writing a lab report. The experimental procedure has already been conducted
Use Third Person
Remember to write your report in third person. You should avoid using words like “I” or “we” when you are referring to the experimental process within a study.
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