How to Write a Lab Report: Structure & FormatBy Angelica Malin
How to prepare a lab report if you’re not one of those people who love science or know everything about writing assignments at college? How badly do you want to get that A+ for the next report in chemistry?
Lab reports may vary from college to college as well as from faculty to faculty. However, in general, most universities and disciplines have the same requirements and instructions when it comes to a typical report. And following those instructions is a must. Why? The answer is quite simple. Only this way you can expect to get the desired mark. If you don’t know those instructions, make sure you read the information below. Our today’s article is fully devoted to college lab reports and manuals to follow in order to get the highest grade possible. If you are searching for ways to complete lab report writing now you can apply to a professional writing service in UK to get immediate assistance with your task. You can read the information below as well to get fully prepared for the next report task, in case a lab report is something you’re going to work with during the whole semester at college.
Components of a Lab Report
Let’s start with a structure. When writing a lab report a student should have a clear image of what exactly he/she is going to write. You have to understand what to compose before writing it. The components of a lab report are quite simple but important. Even if you miss one of the following elements, you risk failing the whole paper. So, a report consists of:
- The goal of the experiment;
- Discussion of the results.
Each component or paragraph of your report has a clear purpose. You shouldn’t include any additional information if it is not essential for this or that part of it. For example, the goals of the experiment should be clearly identified and explained in the beginning, as concise as possible. Write the goals in your own words, taking into consideration a scientific method, which you’re going to use in the paper. The introduction should also be brief and clear. Don’t make it longer than two paragraphs. Mention the background information and the information about what you’re going to do during the research and why it is important. The introductory part must relate to the purpose of the lab.
In the equipment section, you’re asked to list all the equipment, which you’re going to use during the experiment. The procedure section is about summarizing the information needed to perform the experiment. Imagine that you’re writing a descriptive instruction for other scientists to follow your work. Write in a manner, which is fully understandable for other scientists and your professor specifically. The best way to do it is to compose in a numbered point form step-by-step. Provide enough details and write in a logical way. In this part, you have to include the exact mass of the substances used. In the end, read the section and check whether you would be able to reproduce the experiment by yourself only with a procedure section or not. Again, write everything in your own words, without copying each phrase from the manual.
Then, think about the data, which you’re going to collect during the experiment. Create a table. Make calculations to note them in the next section, which is the results of your experiment. Don’t forget to write down the example of each calculation, which you’re going to perform. A reader should have a clear picture of how you’ve got the numbers and the results of work. All the calculations should be placed in a table and presented as the results of your experiment. Don’t include any new data. Put there only that kind of information, which have been collected during the experiment.
The discussion section is going to be the last component of your lab report. The length of it depends on the type of the report you have. Generally, it is about 1-4 paragraphs in length. The point of it is to relate to the observations and analysis of the experiment. Discuss all the information that you’ve found and relate it to the theoretical data.
Format of a Lab Report
Your lab report won’t be complete and correct without proper formatting. Keep all report components in the right order. Use a standard font, headings for sections and sub-sections, be consistent and don’t change the font and the spacing during the whole writing process. Include tables, diagrams, charts, graphs, etc.
As you can see, writing a lab report is not difficult at all. All you have to do is to understand the topic of your experiment and to note the data following the format and the structure.