Explain why you choose this project, and what you hoped to learn from it. You will be required to research the background information for your project, and present the current state of knowledge for the topic of your research. In addition, you must explain your rationale for choosing this project, clearly state the objective or hypothesis, and predict the outcome of the experiments if the hypothesis holds true. Example: if an independent research project investigated the effect of hand sanitize on the growth of E. Oil, then the introduction should include aground information on hand sanitize (what they are, how they are used, the ingredients that kill bacteria), and background information on E. Coli (what it is, why it is a problem). It would also include the experimental hypothesis, e. G. “Hand sanitize will be more effective at killing E. Coli than soap. ” MATERIALS AND METHODS Describe how you conducted your experiments in sufficient detail that someone else could repeat them, WITHOUT excess detail. First and foremost, this section is NOT simply a list of materials and a step-by- step accounting of what you did.
You should write your materials and methods in descriptive form, using past tense (describe what you did). Do not include reasoning in your methods – this belongs in the discussion section. You should describe what you did in enough detail that someone could repeat the experiment if he or she wanted to, but do not use excessive details. As you are doing your experiment, be sure you keep track of what you actually did in your lab notebook, especially any details which vary from the instructions in the lab manual.
What you do could have important implications for the results oh get, and your interpretation of those results. The Materials and Methods in your lab report should be what you actually did, and not just what the lab manual told you to do. Points to remember: * Organize this section carefully and logically, place the methods in the order in which you ran them. * Use subheadings that break the text into distinct sections (if warranted). Do not use subheadings such as “Lab 4. ” Use a descriptive subheading, such as “Agrees Gel Electrophoresis” and make use of bold text to distinguish subheadings. Provide enough information to allow others to repeat the same experiment * Use specific, informative language (quantify whenever possible) * Omit unnecessary information. You do not need to include every possible detail of the time you spent in the lab. Include only those procedures directly pertaining to the results you plan to present in the paper. * Include complete mathematical formulas if appropriate. * Do not make the common error of mixing some of the Results in this section RESULTS Present your data in such a way that someone could go directly to the results section and understand the results of your experiments.
The results section will have a text portion and a portion that contains figures, tables, photographs, graphs, etc. , depending on what kind of data you have. In the text of your results section, describe the trends and important points of your data. Point out what it is that you want your reader to come away with. Be sure you refer to the relevant figures and/or tables when you are writing your text. Refer to them as if you were citing them. For example: The purity of the enzyme improved with each step of the purification scheme (Table 1). For the data portion (i. E. Usuries and tables), there are many ways to present your results, and you should think very carefully about which is the best way. Is it a line graph, a bar graph or histogram, a pie chart, a table, a picture or diagram, or is it some combination of these? Whatever you choose, be sure it clearly shows your results. You want your reader to be able to look at your tables, charts, figures, etc. And know exactly what experiment was done for each one. You also want the reader to be able to understand what the results actually are. ALL of your data that relates to the report should be presented (even negative data).
Organize your data carefully and logically. If possible, present results in the same order as the methods. * Use subheadings that break the data into distinct sections (if warranted) * Summarize the data and emphasize important patterns or trends * Do not interpret your data; do not draw conclusions; do not speculate. In the results section (save these issues for the Discussion) * Graphs, drawings, and photos are considered figures. Each figure and table must have a title and be numbered sequentially as they are introduced in the text. Figure 1, figurer, table 1, tablet) Specify units on the axes of graphs and label all columns and rows of tables. * Computer programs, such as Excel, can help you draw graphs and diagrams. If the graphs are hand drawn they must be neat and accurate. * Examples of some of the ways that you can present your data are illustrated at the end of this handout. DISCUSSION Relate your results back to the introduction. Did you add to the current state of knowledge? What did you learn from your experiments? Were there any sources of error? What future experiments might you conduct? Was your hypothesis supported by your data?
This section is for an interpretation of your results, e. G. What do your results mean? Why did you think that you obtained these results? What can be learned from this experiment.? Connect your results to the concepts behind the experiments and your hypotheses there any questions the experimental design leaves unanswered (related to your hypothesis or not)? How would you improve this experiment in the future? What other experiments would you do now to extend or confirm your results (what is the next step)? You should also indicate if there are any inherent flaws or sources of error in the experimental design.