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How to write a good lab report

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1 How to write a good lab report
What you need to know to get 100% on all of your labs!

2 Abstract/Purpose Tell the person who is reading your lab report what you are doing and why. What’s the problem you’re trying to solve? Example: This is an investigation designed to test the pulling strength of a Bess bug. OR In this experiment, the students will attempt to create a precipitation reaction by combining potassium iodide with hydrogen peroxide.

3 Hypothesis What do you think your results will be?
Try using an “if-then statement”. It’s ok if your hypothesis failed! Example: If the Bess bug can pull 3 times its body mass, then the Bess bug’s relative strength is greater than a human’s. OR: If a substance has a high measure of conductivity, then it is likely to be an ionic compound. If the substance reacts with an acid but not a base, then it is a base.

4 Materials What do you need for this experiment? Make a list Example
A Bess bug Dental floss / fishing line / thread Small petri dish Weights (metal washers) Paper towels

5 Procedure How am I doing my experiment?
The GOAL is to have someone be able to re-create your experiment, perfectly! Be specific, and step-by-step Example: 1. Obtain a Bess Beetle. Find the mass and measurements of the beetle. 2. Set up area for Bess beetles to do experiment. Use 2 sheets of paper towel, and tape it to the lab bench. Continue……. Did you change your procedure?

6 Variables Identify your variables.
Independent Variable- What factor are you changing on purpose? (Always only 1) Dependent Variable- What changed as a result of your independent variable? Example: (if you were testing the volume of rocks) Independent: The rock being tested. Dependent: The measure of volume of the rock.

7 Volume of a Rock in milliliters (mL)
Collect your data! Make a Table, it’s much more organized that way! Volume of a Rock in milliliters (mL) Trial 1 Trial 2 Trial 3 Average Rock 1 55 65 75 Rock 2 60 90

8 Calculations If you needed to make calculations, describe the process used. Trial # 1 was added to trial #2 and trial #3 for Rock 1, and the sum of the trials was divided by 3 to get the average. This process was then repeated for Rock 2. ***pulling power of Bess Beetle. Mass of beetle Mass of weights

9 Conclusion/Analysis Your conclusion must be supported by your data. Use what you did in the lab to prove your point! Usually written in paragraph form Explanation of how your data supports or rejects your hypothesis. You MUST USE DATA COLLECTED IN LAB TO SUPPORT YOUR STATEMENTS IN CONCLUSION!!!! Example: In my hypothesis I thought the Bess Beetles would pull more than their weight because of the body structure. In my experiment …….

10 Discussion (added to conclusion)
Here you can use I, me, or we! What did you/your group do well in this experiment? What did you do poorly/what mistakes did you make? If you think you made a mistake, or the results don’t make sense, why do you think that happened? What did you find easy or challenging about the experiment? How responsible were your group members?

11 You’re done! Tips: Use proper English Spelling counts!
Don’t use “I, me, or we!” (except in discussion section) Use: This investigation shows… In conclusion… This data demonstrates… The data proves that…

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