How to write a perfect lab report

How to write a perfect lab report www.homeworkstand.com

The main aim of a lab report is to convey the objective, methods, and results of a scientific experiment.

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
How to write a perfect lab report
Just from $13/Page
Order Essay

Being generally shorter than any research paper, a lab report helps to demonstrate your understanding of the concept with the help of hands-on lab experiments. Subjects like science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) often require students to make lab reports. The article will focus on how to write a lab report with proper structure.

The structure of a lab report

Though different scientific fields and courses require varied sections of a lab report, almost all of them will contain the basics; the objective, the findings, and the methods used to conclude. Each section of a lab report serves its own purpose.

  1. Title: It defines the topic of the experiment or study.
  2. Abstract: The section summarises the objective, methods, results as well as conclusions.
  3. Introduction: The section is used to establish context for the reader to understand the topic.
  4. Method: The section details the methodologies and materials used to conduct the experiment.
  5. Results: It provides reports on all the inferential and descriptive statistical data.
  6. Discussion: The section is used to interpret and evaluate the results while identifying any limitations.
  7. Conclusion: The section will help to sum up the findings of the experiment.
  8. References: Use this section to list all the sources you have used in a specific style like the APA.
  9. Appendices: The section will allow the listing of any lengthy materials, tables, or figures.

After you learn how to write a lab report, almost all of the lab reports that you come across will have similar sections with some omission or combination of the sections. For example, some lab reports replace the introduction section with research aims or remove the conclusion.

If you are unsure of which sections to include, it is a good idea to consult your lab instructor.

Title: This is what the reader will first read in your report. Your title will make the first impression, so ensure to practice catchy titles when you are learning how to write a lab report. With an effective title, you will be able to covey the main objective or the purpose of your experiment. There is no need for it to be thought-provoking or creative, but make sure it is informative.

Abstract: The objective of an abstract is to condense the entire report in just about 150 to 300 words to provide the reader with a concise version of the objective, methods, results, and conclusion.

In other words, the abstract will give the readers a preview of the full lab report. When you are learning the basics of how to write a lab report, it is often advised that you finish the abstract at last so that you will be able to summarise each of the sections.

So, when learning how to write a lab report abstract, make sure to keep the following points in mind:

  1. The wider context of the experiment
  2. The question you are trying to answer with the help of the experiment.
  3. How the experiment has been performed
  4. The results of the experiment.
  5. Your interpretation of the outcome.
  6. The significance or importance of your findings

Introduction: When you start learning how to write a lab report, one of the first things you will have to focus on is the introduction. The introduction to your lab report will set the scene for your study. One of the best ways to write an effective introduction is by using the funnel or inverted triangle structure. The structure consists of

  1. A general and broad research topic at the start
  2. Use your specific study focus to narrow down your topic.
  3. End the section with a clear question pertaining to your research.

It is good to start the section by providing background information on your topic and explaining its importance in the real world or theoretical context. Also, ensure to describe any previous research on your topic or try to fill a gap in the research field.

Now you will need to detail the theoretical basis for your experiment as well as describe relevant equations and laws that you will use to support your findings. Finally, outline your hypothesis by stating the main aim of your lab report.

An introduction does not need to be lengthy, but it is always a good idea to organize the introduction section into subheadings or paragraphs such as “Research aims” or “Research Context”.

Method: One of the key sections to keep a special note of when learning how to write a lab report is the Method section which details the steps and procedures of the experiment. Ensure to give out enough details so the readers can evaluate or follow the procedure you used. Use past tense to write this section and include a list, steps, or materials that have played a role in the experiment in the appendices while referring to them in this section.

You should be able to describe the design, the subjects, steps, and procedures that you used to collect the data and analyze them.

  1. Experimental design: Make sure to mention if your experiment is designed “within” or “between” subjects. Also, don’t forget to mention how the sample set you chose was relevant to the study.
  2. Subjects: Describe the demographic characteristics of the human subjects you used for the study. Subjects can also be animals or plants in terms of genetic background. It is important to keep a note of the sample size and describe how the subjects were recruited or selected for your study.
  3. Materials: Use this section to list out any materials required to gather the data and arrive at the result and don’t forget to name any specialized equipment that was essential to conduct the study.
  4. When learning how to write a lab report, it is important to describe the settings and conditions of the experiment in detail. Also, note any extraneous variables that had to be controlled by restricting them or by standardising them to a certain level for the sake of the experiment.
  5. Procedures: The section should include the exact steps that you have taken to collect the data in chronological order. Make sure to provide ample information in a concise manner for someone else to replicate your results. Appendices can be used to place detailed information if required.
  6. When conducting a lab experiment, it is quite common to follow a lab manual. After you have learned how to write a lab report, in some cases, the instructor might allow you to take references from the manual and ask you to state if you have deviated from the mentioned steps based on practical considerations. While in other cases, you may be instructed to rewrite the procedures mentioned in the manual into coherent paragraphs while noting down any deviations from the steps mentioned in the manual when applied in practice.
  7. In cases of dealing with extensive data analysis, it is important to state the methods of planned analysis as well. It can include the type of test you will be performing or software or computer programs used to derive the calculations.

Results: When learning how to write a lab report, there should be a proper emphasis on structuring and writing the results section of the lab report. The section is particularly important since this section is used to record the results of the statistical analysis procedures that were conducted. Ensure to clearly state how do the results support or refute your initial hypothesis.

The main results to include in the lab report are:

  • Descriptive statistics.
  • Statistical test results and their significance
  • Estimates of confidence intervals or standard error

You can use tables or figures to report your results. You can use text when you have to highlight a few key data however when presenting large sets of numbers, use tables or use graphs to highlight the relationship between the variables.

It is a good idea to include sample calculations in the results section when dealing with complex experiments. Add a brief description of the sample calculation with the help of clear symbols. The appendices section should be used to present any raw data with references to highlight trends or outliers when you are learning how to write a lab report.

Discussion: The discussion section is a highlight of your understanding of the experiment, demonstrating your critical thinking skills. Proceed to this section with great care when learning how to write a lab report as this section will allow you to:

  1. Interpret your results.
  2. Draw a comparison between the expectation and the outcome.
  3. Identification of sources of error.
  4. Provide an explanation for unpredicted results.
  5. Provide suggestions to improve.

Properly interpreting the results will help you to answer the primary research question. Report if your results align with your hypothesis.

  • Were you able to measure what you sought to measure?
  • Was the procedure for analysis adept for this type of data?

Compare your results with that of other research and try to identify and explain the key differences in findings.

  • Do your results align with those of the previous studies? Why or why not?

Highlighting the limitations and the strengths of a study is one of the characteristics of an effective discussion section when you are learning how to write a lab report.

  1. Is high internal reliability and validity present?
  2. How were these aspects of your study established?

It is a good idea to use examples when describing limitations. For example, when there is a significant contribution of the random error to your measurements, state the source of the error and suggest ways to mitigate it. Now that you are familiar with how to write a lab report discussion section, we can move on to the final section of the report.

Conclusion
It is the final section of the lab report. The section will be used to summarise the entire experiment. Some reports might choose to skip this section as it sometimes overlaps with the discussion section, but if you have recently learned how to write a lab report, it is best to consult your instructor first.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is a lab report different from a research paper?

A lab report is used to demonstrate your understanding of a scientific concept with the help of a hands-on experiment, while a research paper is used to develop an original concept independently. A research paper is quite lengthy when compared to a lab report.

Is it necessary to include a conclusion in a lab report?

When learning how to write a lab report, you will be taught to include a concluding section at the very end, but in some cases, if the discussion section overlaps with the conclusion, the conclusion section can be skipped, though it is a good idea to consult your lab instructor first.

Calculate the price
Make an order in advance and get the best price
Pages (550 words)
$0.00
*Price with a welcome 15% discount applied.
Pro tip: If you want to save more money and pay the lowest price, you need to set a more extended deadline.
We know how difficult it is to be a student these days. That's why our prices are one of the most affordable on the market, and there are no hidden fees.

Instead, we offer bonuses, discounts, and free services to make your experience outstanding.
How it works
Receive a 100% original paper that will pass Turnitin from a top essay writing service
step 1
Upload your instructions
Fill out the order form and provide paper details. You can even attach screenshots or add additional instructions later. If something is not clear or missing, the writer will contact you for clarification.
Pro service tips
How to get the most out of your experience with Home Work Stand
One writer throughout the entire course
If you like the writer, you can hire them again. Just copy & paste their ID on the order form ("Preferred Writer's ID" field). This way, your vocabulary will be uniform, and the writer will be aware of your needs.
The same paper from different writers
You can order essay or any other work from two different writers to choose the best one or give another version to a friend. This can be done through the add-on "Same paper from another writer."
Copy of sources used by the writer
Our college essay writers work with ScienceDirect and other databases. They can send you articles or materials used in PDF or through screenshots. Just tick the "Copy of sources" field on the order form.
Testimonials
See why 20k+ students have chosen us as their sole writing assistance provider
Check out the latest reviews and opinions submitted by real customers worldwide and make an informed decision.
Computer science
The work and detail provided in the assignment were exactly what I was looking for! Very pleased with the whole process and the data which was analyzed. I could not have asked for a better writer, thank you again for your hard work, and Happy Holidays
Customer 452445, December 10th, 2021
Psychology
You have done a fantastic job ???? thank you.????
Customer 452445, January 14th, 2022
History
Excellent work, thank you so much for doing this on such short notice! You're a lifesaver!
Customer 452445, January 21st, 2022
Human Resources Management (HRM)
Great paper and delivered on time.
Customer 452445, January 27th, 2022
Criminal law
I got an A. I recommend homeworkstand.
Customer 452445, October 31st, 2021
Human Resources Management (HRM)
This has been the greatest help while I am recovering from an illness. Thank your team so much.
Customer 452445, June 6th, 2022
Nursing
Great writer. I get a 100 on everything I turn in from here :)
Customer 452445, January 16th, 2022
Philosophy
I am so pleased with your services Thank you so much for a well-done job with my papers!
Customer 452445, January 12th, 2022
Business Studies
Remarkable work!! Always helpful and amazing communication!!
Customer 452445, January 4th, 2022
Chemistry
It was very helpful and well thought out.
Customer 452445, January 26th, 2022
Biology (and other Life Sciences)
Awesome.........................
Customer 452445, October 30th, 2021
Business Studies
Great Work. Very Thorough
Customer 452445, January 12th, 2022
11,595
Customer reviews in total
96%
Current satisfaction rate
3 pages
Average paper length
37%
Customers referred by a friend
OUR GIFT TO YOU
15% OFF your first order
Use a coupon FIRST15 and enjoy expert help with any task at the most affordable price.
Claim my 15% OFF Order in Chat

Order your essay today and save 15% with the discount code ESSAYHELP