Lab reports are an inescapable activity for science students at schools, colleges, and universities. Lab reports actually test the fact that students attentively attended the lab, understood the experiment, its purpose, and utility. Further, it also tells that now students are capable of repeating the experiment on its own and interpreting the result.
Not all reports follow similar format or length. However, all the lab reports have some general patterns. Every lab report has a unique title- the experiment name that you performed in the lab-and ends at the conclusion. Of course, references are enumerated after the conclusion. Assuming that students are well aware of the format. Here attention is made towards some elusive parts of the lab report.
A major section of the student, for instance, write ‘Abstract’ first. Though it appears at the start of the report, it should be written at the end and then inserted at the top. Actually, an abstract presents the summary of a complete lab activity in one paragraph. So, how one can write a summary of something when it is not completed yet. Therefore, often the abstract lacks crucial information. As a result, the first impression of the lab report is spoiled.
Like the abstract, there are other important aspects that students often ignore. Time does not allow us to enumerate all. However, the introduction and discussion sections are significant from lab point of view. The introduction is technically the beginning of your lab report though abstract appears at the top. So due attention should be served to the introduction. In the introduction, we explain the context, related theory and state the aim of the report. It should be written in your own words. Clarity and conciseness should not be sacrificed in pursuit of writing more.
Another important section is the discussion section. The instructor always pays more attention to this section. Again you need to write in your own words. Here you have to comment and interpret the results you have obtained. If any deviation in the result is seen, explain to it why did it occur. What sources of error caused it and where from these errors came. You can tell the ways the result could be better than you achieved. Lastly, always follow the recommended referencing guide.
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