Most people love laboratory experiments because they are fun. They also guarantee you an opportunity to get out of the box and experience something new. You must understand laboratory experiments usually accompany that lab reports.
Lab reports are written to analyze, describe, and explain laboratory experiments that investigate a scientific concept. If you are not well informed about lab reports, worry less because this article will update you more about the lab report template.
What Is a Lab Report?
A lab report is a comprehensive documentation of a conducted experiment in the laboratory in conjunction with the findings. Therefore, a lab report needs to capture the full details. Furthermore, it should be presented in a predefined format. This enables anyone who needs to go through it and refer to it in the future to do so quickly. Remember, a lab report has a structure that includes the title, abstract, introduction, method, results in analysis and discussion, conclusion, and references. A powerful introduction is likely to make you win your lab report easily.
What is a Lab Report Template?
A lab report template is documentation (format) written to analyze, describe and explain the laboratory experiment that investigates a scientific concept. On multiple occasions, they are usually assigned to students to:
- Communicate specifically and clearly
- Evaluate research objectively and methodically
- Explore varying theoretical explanation
- Apply essential statistics, which enables them to test their hypothesis
- Review written works and related literature for formulated hypothesis justification
- Develop a hypothesis addressing a particular stimulus or problem
- Conduct a scientific research
Lab Report Templates & Examples
Essential Elements of a Lab Report Template
Whenever you need to develop a report, whether a physics or chemistry lab report template or any assigned report, you must familiarize yourself with varying parts of a report; these elements will guide you when writing your report. You only need to have the content for each part. Below are some elements of a lab report template:
The report’s title
The report’s title must specify what your entire documentation is about and what you are experimenting on or studying. In addition, your title should explain all the environmental factors, especially those manipulated, specific stimuli, and the measured parameters. Ideally, it would be appropriate to use concise terms and avoid unnecessary terms to make your title length.
You must know that the abstract summarizes your entire report and it is not lengthy. It can be approximately 250 words. On the other hand, you can use the abstract to understand the purpose of the research, the method used, results, and the value of your research without going through the whole report. Published academic journals are helpful, more so when conducting library research. You can evaluate them quickly to see if they match you’re your topic. The content of your abstract needs to match the content of your whole report. Below is how you should write your abstract:
- Commence with the background sentence to introduce your report
- State the main objective of the report as well as the hypothesis
- The key points must have a description of your methodology
- Summarize the entire results qualitatively and quantitatively
This also serves as the purpose of your report. First, you must commence with the issue you are addressing. After that, generate your background information about your report. It must be easy to understand, concise, and direct.
Similarly, it must entail a short review of the previous literature. However, this must be relevant to the explanation and problem you are addressing. The last sentence of your introduction is the purpose statement, which defines the question your experiment answers. You must know that the introduction is the foundation of your report, and you need to use varying resource materials.
Methodology and material
This element includes the apparatus, equipment, materials, and experimental design you used to succeed in your experiment. It proves the methodology you used to analyze and gather your data, including the entire control type.
Besides, it ensures that the information you write is detailed to enable anyone to replicate your experiment comfortably. Since you have conducted all the procedures, you must note these parts in the past tense. Here are several tips you need to implement:
- Use a first active person voice or passive voice in the description
- State your reference as well as the entire methodology that you have adapted from your other sources
- Indicate all the maps, photographs, and illustrations, more so if you are needed to describe your experiment setup
- Describe the procedures you altered in comparison to the procedures you used in your reference
Finding and results
Under this section, you need to write down your relevant data without any interpretation or even conclusions. Additionally, this section can provide a structure when written well and organized, especially for the next part of the report.
Ensure that you document your entire findings in the order of your observation from the first step of your experiment. Use complete sentences for easy understanding. Similarly, you can also opt to use tables, diagrams that support your results, making them easier to understand.
- Use numerical and worded data in your result description. Ensure that you use appropriate terminologies.
- Use past tense to describe your findings
- Comprehensive results or calculations can be added to your report to act as an appendix
Here you must discuss all your findings and results. You can explain how your research varies from the one conducted previously in the same field. Explain more about your results and what it means.
- Describe the emerged relations and patterns
- Discuss your observation, results, and how is related to the objective of your experiment
- Compare your results to the other published literature and the theoretical behavior
- Supplement your interpretation with varying references
- Ensure you are descriptive to enable your discussion to be easy to understand by your readers
- You can reject or accept your written hypothesis, followed by an explanation using the experiment findings
This is the last part of your lab report template. The conclusion needs to feature short sentences to restate the primary results and indicate the importance of your field of study.
Tables and other figures
They are usually added to the report to stand in for complicated data. Here are several guidelines for you:
- Tables are tables, while relevant items such as graphs, maps, and diagrams are figures
- Number your entire figures and tables for easy location when referred in your rest text
- The figure and tables must have their titles that are self-explanatory for easy understanding
Here you need to include the references you used throughout the entire research as well as experimentation. You also need to indicate them down appropriately.
- It is a list written on a separate page, and this is at the end of the report
- You must also include the information which is not original in this section
- Refer to all the literature you have used
Before You Begin Preparing Your Lab Report Template
Writing a lab report template can be tricky sometimes, more so if someone is not prepared. Therefore, ensure that you know everything you need before you commence your experiment. The steps below will guide you.
Conduct sufficient research concerning your experiment and ask yourself some questions, such as:
- What should you learn from your experiment?
- What experiments should be carried out in the lab?
- What procedures should you do, and why should you follow them?
- What will you benefit from the investigation?
Consult with your lab supervisor or anyone else who knows about your experiment.
Plan the entire steps of your analysis and avoid rushing. Handle each step thoroughly to experiment accurately.
Think of the ideal way to present your results and finding before commencing your project.
If you are handling the experiment as a group, ensure that you communicate well with your group members.
Consider your audience by recording everything that makes your investigation relevant.
Types of Formal Lab Report Templates
You must know that not all types of laboratory work need a report. Thus, it would be great to know the formal lab report templates that require a report. Here are the types of formal lab report templates:
Project report templates
This type of project is broader since it requires a broader understanding of a particular subject or topic. This report does not need you to record the experiment results, but you can generate a concept or design description. These reports require you to include the reference.
Lab report templates
The lab reports feature a narrow scope, which aims at one problem. There are varying formats of such reports. You can opt to fill in your findings in your blank worksheet lines. Likewise, you can make a full report. It does not contain references, but students refer to the textbooks or lectures when experimenting. Lab report templates can be of different topics, such as a biology, science, physics, or chemistry lab report template.
Tips for Writing Your Lab Report
Developing a lab report can entail many steps from the beginning to the end of your experiment. Here are some tips you must consider from the start to the end of your lab report:
It would help if you started with the introduction to enlighten your audience and group members on the experiment. This should be around 4 to 5 sentences long. Likewise, you can opt to summarize your entire report in just a short paragraph. Formulate your own words instead of copying from other people’s literature. Make sure that you include the background report to explain the purpose of the experiment.
State the goals of the experiment. You must also explain some of the methodologies and techniques you are likely to use and achieve your objectives. Remember, your introduction needs to be brief and direct. The procedural flowchart should be longer compared to the introduction part. However, it should not exceed a page. It acts as the roadmap of your experiment. Use simple and short sentences.
Here, you must use a pen to write down your data. This is a guarantee that you will not miss out on the relevant information. Save the data where you cannot lose it either in your notebook or a piece of paper, which is filled. Avoid throwing things until you finalize your entire report. This will help you not to lose essential information. Ensure that you note down your observation and interpret when making your report. Write everything in your notebook and use it to build the content of your report.
From the raw data you had collected in your notebook, recopy everything in an organized manner. You can use graphs and tables to make your data easy to understand and readable. Include the formulas you used in your calculations. The calculations should be accurate and confirmed by at least one or two members of the group. Ensure that you include the entire work you have done in your experiment. Your conclusion should be similar to your introduction. The difference only comes in when you summarize everything in the conclusion section. Bear in mind that the conclusion should be direct and short.
Similarly, you can briefly indicate the methodology you have used. Then, restate your finding, which should be relevant to your experiment. Next, indicate the meaning of your finding. After that, write the conclusion of your report and proofread to eliminate errors and mistakes in your grammar.
What is the lab report format?
A lab report format includes several sections: the title, abstract, introduction, method, results, and discussion. However, the appendices, references, abstract, and title pages are usually on separate pages.
How do you start a lab report?
You commence with a broad introduction to your topic, then narrow down more about the topic you want to investigate and the importance of the study. Ensure that your introduction includes the literature review to discuss what you already know about the topic. You also need to write down the objective of your study.
How do you name a lab report?
The title should have what you are covering in your entire report. It should be brief and direct. Make sure you use the keyword in your topic.
How long does it take to write a lab report?
Approximately 8 to 10 hours, but some can take a minimal duration because they are faster to write.
How many pages should a lab report be?
Your report does not need to exceed 4 to 5 texts pages. Furthermore, the writing style needs to be grammatical, concise, and clear.
This comprehensive post has made you more informed about the lab report template. You now understand its elements, the common types, and the tips you must consider to develop a clear and appropriate lab report template. This type of report analyzes describes and explains the laboratory experiments that investigate the scientific concept.