Formal Lab Report Guidelines

Formal Lab Report Guidelines

Formal Lab Report Guidelines

Spots Lab

Prepare a written report of your experiment which includes the section titles listed below. These section titles should be used to label each section of your report. Formal lab reports must be typed in 12 point Times New Roman or Arial font. You should have an original title, and your name should be present on the front page. (5 points).

  1. Introduction (10 points)
  2. Hypothesis (10 points)
  3. Materials (10 points)
  4. Procedures (10 points)
  5. Observations/Data Collection (15 points)
  6. Analysis (20 points)
  7. Conclusions (20 points)

The following information should be included in each section of the lab report.

  1. Introduction-In this section of the report you should give the reader background information that will help them understand the experiment that you have conducted. Important terms, equations, and reactions should be presented in the section. Additionally the purpose of the lab should be clearly stated in the introduction.

Define: Octet rule, ionic bonding, cation, anion. Explain how to write ionic formulas. Discuss the purpose of this lab.

  1. Hypothesis-This relatively short section should include a testable hypothesis written in an if-then format.

How many of the solutions do you believe will react? All of them, half, most or a few? Use an if-then statement.

  1. Materials-A complete listing of the materials and supplies that were used to conduct the experiment should be included in this portion of the report. Include quantities if applicable (example-10 mL 0.5 M hydrochloric acid) and be as descriptive as possible.

Materials should be determined during the lab. Use the following example to list the ions: Fe3+ ion

  1. Procedures-In this section of the report you should present the exact steps that were followed in your experiment. If applicable, clearly identify the control, variables, and the measurement techniques used. This section should be presented as numbered steps.

Write your own procedures. Be sure to be detailed and to use scientific language. Write out the procedure for mixing one set of ions, then include a “repeat” procedure for the rest of the ions.

  1. Observations/Data Collection-All of the data and observations that were collected during the experiment should be presented in a data table or tables. If applicable, a graph of the data should be included in this section. Make sure that the graph is appropriately titled and labeled. Include a legend if necessary. Qualitative data may be recorded in paragraph form.

Observations will be recorded on the data table made by the student during the lab. He/she may use this original table in their lab report. If a student uses the original data table, they must write clearly or they will forfeit the points for this section.

  1. Analysis-This section should show all mathematical calculations that were performed on the collected data. Equations and thorough work should support your calculations. This section may be neatly handwritten in pen.

Students will write the ionic formulas for the ions that reacted. This part may also be hand-written, but the same standards for neat handwriting must be followed.

  1. Conclusions-This portion of the report is used to clearly explain whether the results support or refute the hypothesis being tested by citing any data or evidence from the experiment. You should also answer any conclusion questions posed in the lab and discuss sources of error that were present. Conclusion 1: Do you accept or reject your hypothesis? Give evidence.

Conclusion 2: What did you learn from this lab? In other words, what is the big idea?

Conclusion 3: What are three sources of error in this lab? In other words, what would you do differently or correct if you were going to do this lab again?

Each conclusion (1,2,3) should be written as its own section. Do not write one big paragraph for all three conclusion sections. Separate them. Failure to do so will result in a point deduction. Also, be sure to directly answer what the question is asking.