The skills to show technical information findings plainly and precisely is very important to anyone undertaking work in the sciences. It is a norm in sciences for learners to prepare structured reports that report on the investigation and the experiment they have conducted during their practical as may be required in their course work. These reports must be precise when communicating the aims, methods, findings, and conclusions of the experiment. The following will give a step-by-step guide on how to write a lab report that can be applied to all experiments in any field of science.
Follow The Structure Of Writing A Lab Report
One of the most common things in any lab report is the structure. Lab reports are structured linearly in a very particular way divided into various sections of the experiment. Slight changes may be observed for particular experiments or according to the direction of the professors. The following is how to write a lab report and its structure. A good place to find assistance in writing a lab report is sites like Homeworkmarket.
You must adhere to the formal structure that is provided for writing a lab report. This is a scientific document and thus should be written in a way that is directed. A lab report usually has an introduction, a method, result discussion, and reference sections.
Introduce your Report
Any good report should be able to introduce to the reader the subject matter that is being investigated. This should offer a good summary of the experiment’s subject and what is known and not about this area of experimentation.
Be Specific And To The Point
One thing that you should not do is be wordy when you are writing a lab report. Instead, be concise and direct to the point that you want to communicate to your report reader. Remember that the lab report is not an essay and avoid providing too many unnecessary details. Details can always be put in the appendix if required.
Do Not Write In The First-Person Personal Pronoun
Avoid speaking in the first person when you are writing a lab report. Worked like ‘we,’ ‘my,’ or ‘I’ should be avoided. This is very easy to forget, and you might find yourself writing in the first person, but as you get used to writing a lab report, this will become less of a problem. As a beginner in writing lab reports, go through the full report you have written to be sure that you have not used any of these words.
Avoid Using Numeral In Your Lab Report
It is important to use words instead of numeral when writing a lab report. This is especially advised to avoid misreading for the person who will be reading your report, especially due to poor handwriting if your report is handwritten.
Precede Number Less Than One With A Zero
Some of us are guilty of only writing a decimal point and the number that follows,e.g., .5 instead of 0.5. it is very important to include the zero that precedes the decimal when writing the report. Always remember to include it.
Use Past Tense Verbs
It may be hard to remember to write in the past tense as but remember that this is supposed to be a report of something that has already occurred, and so the tense should be in the past. The only exception that you could make is when talking about a theory or referring to a report that already exists; then, in this case, it would be appropriate the use the present tense to describe this.
Use Your Own Words
When experimenting, and more so as a beginner, a manual will be given that details the steps that will be followed when conducting this experiment. It is thus important that you use your own words to report on what happened and resist the temptation of copying the same thing written in the experiment manual. If you have something that you have to borrow from the manual, you must cite and reference the manual and page depending on the writing style you have been instructed to use.
Avoid Using Negative Language
Avoid the mistake that most people who are new to writing a report commit, using negative language. You should only report on what occurred, and therefore negative language needs to be used. One thing that might tempt you to use negative language such as ‘not’or‘no’ is because you might be anticipating that something is expected to happen, and so when it does not happen, you use negative language. Observe what is happening and report on that.
Do not use abbreviations if they are not the allowed standards. It would be okay to use Kgs to stand for kilograms, but other abbreviations that are not standard should be avoided. When it comes to grammar, the same must be done. All words should be written in full and follow the rule of grammar while writing.
Do Not Use Impersonal Passive
An example of this would be when you say the ‘base was applied’; this should be avoided, and an active voice should be used.
Do Not Give Statistics
Avoid giving statistics in your lab report. Statistics are allowed in an essay but not in a lab report. Restrict yourself to the findings of the experiment as much as possible. This mistake occurs a lot during the discussion section, and this the place to watch out when doing the report.
Do not procrastinate until the last minute to start doing your report. A report may take a significant amount of time, sometimes days, to write, and so waiting until the due day of handing in your assignment will only guarantee that the report you write is not satisfactory. If you are looking to get the best grade that you can in any report, consider writing as soon as possible to avoid the last-minute rush that will undoubtedly interfere with the quality of work you will deliver. Follows these tips given, and you will surely have a good lab report to hand in.