The aim of a laboratory report is to archive the work you’ve done during conducting research and doing your experiment. Don’t miss the details, read what matters when structuring your lab report.
Lab Report Template
A lab report is written to keep a record of a scientific experiment. You will then use the record used to describe and analyze the outcome so that you can be able to come up with the right conclusions. They help the researcher to:
- Go about their research
- Come up with a hypothesis
- Do a thorough literature review in a bid to justify the hypothesis
- Allow others to use your study to understand the concept or research on it further
- Communicate precisely about an individual scientific concept
- Go about the experiment in an objective and systematic manner
- Try and find out theoretical explanations to your findings
- Use statistics to test your hypothesis
Read also: Lab Report Format
Importance of a Lab Report
Numerous advantages exist that you will experience when you learn how to use a lab report. These are:
- It helps you jog your memory better while coming up with explanations for your findings. The report is a documentation of the reasons you have hence you will not repeat yourself.
- Correctly documented findings are easy to go back to and determine whether they support your hypothesis or not. If they do not, then you will take another research method. Documentation helps you not to repeat the same thing twice.
- Research is for your studies as well as those others in your line of work. Therefore when you document your findings accurately, other will be able to refer to it in the future. This will help them either continue with your research, take a different direction or just enlighten them on the particular subject you were studying.
- It is also useful for academic purposes. This is the only way that your tutor will be able to know whether you grasped the concept and whether you did it the right way.
Lab Report Template
Title: this one is a brief, straightforward and descriptive title of what your experiment. Choose your words keenly to avoid being vague or misunderstood.
Statement of the problem: these are the questions that you hope to answer by the end of the experiment. Here you will also include any prior observations you might have made of the topic and also background information that you have read from other sources.
Hypothesis: a hypothesis is a possible solution to the problem. This is what you anticipate finding out later in your experiment. State it in a complete sentence and that leaves room for testing. This is where you include a statement that shows the criteria that support your hypothesis as well as the data that will not support your hypothesis.
Materials: in this section, write down all the items that you used in the lab. This is to ensure whoever reads the report is clear on exactly what you used just in case there are other alternatives or if they want to do the experiment as well.
Procedure: Write this one in complete sentences. The process seeks to explain the steps that you took in carrying out the research. Arrange the points from the first to the last. Do not go into details; just make sure the sentences are understandable. Do not mix up the steps as this would mean that if someone were to do the experiment, they would not get the results you did. If possible, number the steps to make it easy for the reader.
Results: this is also known as the data that you collected in the experiment. Here you can use tables to present your data as well as the observations that you made during the experiment. You may also add any other additional notes that you think will help the reader gain a better understanding of the data you collected. If the space that is not enough, then you have the freedom to attach a separate sheet. This is because you are not supposed to leave any data out. Label all the tables, charts, and graphs that you use properly to avoid any confusion.
Conclusion: in this section, accept or reject the hypothesis that you had stated earlier. Also, explain your reasons for accepting or rejecting the hypothesis in simple, clear statement supported by the data that you have collected. Additionally, have a data summary that helps the reader comprehend the results of the experiment. This is not a duplication of your data report, but a simpler explanation of what the data means in a less scientific language. It is also important that you list anything new that you have learned during the experiment and how it would be applicable in real life cases. Finally, state any possible errors that you think might have been made during data collection considering that you cannot be 100% correct.
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