Lab Formatting Guidelines
Remember that there is an order that your labs need to be turned in when you are doing your lab reports. Also, neatness is a key ingredient in science. That means making your lab readable, of course, but it also means no partially torn pieces of paper and having your lab stapled correctly so all the papers are attached. If you went to the store and picked up a book to buy and many pages started falling out all over, you probably wouldn't buy the book. Neatness and appearance count !
Order in which your labs should be assembled.
1. Body of the Lab
This would be the pages (in order) that you received when you were assigned the lab. Most of your labs will be page numbered If it isn't then you should immediately put page numbers on them.
2. Tables, Chart, & Graphs
If you have to create any tables, charts, or graphs they should go after the body of the lab. Make sure that you make your charts neat and organized. Any table, chart or graph can be done on a computer. Don't make your table too small.
3. Lab Questions
Sometimes there are questions to answer for the lab that do not have space to put the answer in the body of the lab. For these questions, they go on another sheet of paper and attached to the lab in order.
4. Error Page (Data Analysis)
This page includes the sources of error and if needed the percent error. Remember that all the labs don't need a percent error calculation. You will be told which ones do. These can go on the same page as long as it is neat. Of course, you can type out the sources of error if you wish. If you need a review on how to calculate Percent Error you can view the following PowerPoint. PERCENT ERROR REVIEW
Every lab needs a summary. This goes after all the data, questions, and data analysis. It should be about half a page and should explain the theory that was covered in the lab. Many labs lose points because they explain the procedure of the lab instead of the theory of the lab. Remember, don't simply state the steps of the lab. Those were listed earlier in the lab.
6. Lab Notes
Everyone is required to keep a set of informal lab notes for each lab. This is attached at the very end of the lab AFTER THE SUMMARY. The lab notes includes anything that you will need to complete the lab. Here is a partial list of what might be found in the lab notes: Due date, location of equipment, directions for individual steps within the lab, data tables to be copied later, etc. Lab notes are worth 10 points each lab.
1. Pages out of order in the lab result in -5 pts per infraction.
2. Labs that are not neat lose points due to sloppiness.
3. Late labs are deducted 50% for each late day. Turn them in on time.
4. More points are lost in labs due to people failing to do sections of the lab rather than doing sections incorrectly.