Lab reports are the biggest and most important part of an experiment. It summarizes your work and shows what you learned from the experience. It’s much more than just representing data and explaining the results. You need to explain the reasons you chose that subject, what results you were expecting, what you got from the outcome, and what conclusions you drew. But don’t be overly concerned! You will do a great job!
Lab reports structure
- Start with a one-paragraph abstract. This small review of the experiment must contain the purpose for the study, the methodology used to conduct the experiment, findings, and conclusion. This must be the essence of your research. It will help people to understand the study and gain their interest in reading the report.
- Next, provide the introduction. First, provide a statement in a few sentences. Then write more about what led you to researching the problem, on what previous research your work is based, and what kind of methodology was used in carrying out the experiment.
- Speaking of equipment and methods, don’t forget to provide a full list of materials and techniques used. You can refer to the existing lab manual for your school.
- Now, we move on to describing the procedure. It’s the main part of lab reports. Even if you conducted your experiment in adherence to the manual, you should explain all the steps taken during the research process. This chapter needs to answer all possible questions that may arise. When writing the results, remember that every conclusion, graphic, calculation, etc., needs to be understood by the reader in a written format. Lead him to the findings and conclusion you got from the experiment. Finally, it’s time to discuss the research. This part is the most interesting and the most difficult part when you write lab reports. Show what you understood from this work and add your thoughts. Perhaps it will lead you to conduct another experiment in that field. Here, you must be able to express yourself. Discuss mistakes, limitations in the study, or unexpected outcomes. Analyze each step of the process.
- In conclusion, provide a summary of the purpose for the experiment and the conclusions you arrived at. It can be minimalistic; one paragraph is enough.