CH 130 B: General Chemistry I The Lab Report As a scientist you are responsible for conveying the results of an experiment to a supervisor, a colleague, or the public. Often, you will convey this information in the form of a scientific paper describing your work. This paper needs to clearly describe why and how an experiment was done, and it must include an interpretation of results, including a discussion of their importance and any significant sources of error. You lab report will be a brief version of a publication.
It should contain the following sections: Introduction This part of the paper should be an explanation of the purpose of the experiments and a review of relevant principles related to the work. This is NOT a procedure. Data and Calculations Attach your graded summary sheet from the experiment. If you did any calculations incorrectly, attach a sheet with correct calculations. In addition to the summary sheet include a table which details observations and known information. What did the solutions look like, what were their concentrations, etc.?
Results and Discussion This part of the report should include an in-depth discussion of your data and observations, in essay form. Again, do not rewrite a detailed procedure here, but summarize what you did in the experiment. Describe what you observed. What do your results tell you? Explain whether your results matched your expected results. If they didn’t (and they surely didn’t match exactly) discuss the reasons why this might be the case. What are the possible sources of error?
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How would each of these sources of error affect the result? Convince yourself and your reader that you are correct in your conclusions. Reiterate your data in relation to your conclusions. You should be able to explain the chemistry that is occurring in the experiment. Please remember the basic principles of writing. Your lab report must be mechanically correct (grammar and punctuation). It is your responsibility to check your grammar and spelling. You will be graded on this. How is a lab report different than an English paper? Lab reports are written in third person, passive, past tense. • The rough draft and final draft can be double-sided, but they must be double-spaced. • Lab reports use simple, declarative sentences that connect observations to conclusions. • The simplest way to say something is often the best. There is no page or word requirement. Say what you have to say so that your reader understands. Common mistakes to avoid: • Try not to start your introduction with “the purpose of this experiment” or a similar phrase. Compounds/elements are not proper nouns. Do not capitalize them. • Use superscripts and subscripts. • Proofread!! This lab report should be approximately 2 pages long. You will all write the lab report for the same experiment. The experiment is labeled on your schedule as “Cu Cycle. ” A completed rough draft of your lab report is due on (or before) October 22. The rough draft will be counted as half of the total grade for the paper. The final draft of your report will be due on November 26 in class.
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