1510 Report Student

1510 Report Student - BIOLOGY 1510 LABORATORY REPORTS The...

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B IOLOGY 1510 L ABORATORY R EPORTS The rationale for lab reports is two-fold. First, they will familiarize the students with the style and techniques of scientific writing, both of which are quite different from general composition. Second, they will help the students analyze the data and hopefully, better understand each exercise reported. The following points are provided as a general guide for writing a lab report in addition to that on p. 117-119 in Experiments in Biology. All page length recommendations refer to single-spaced, normal font (Helvetica, Arial, Times, Palatino, etc) at 10 to 12 point size. 1. Reports must be neat and legible. Typing is required. Proofread the report to make sure that it is grammatically correct. Check for misspellings, incomplete or run-on sentences, changes in verb tense and misplaced ideas. Use the spell check and grammar check function of your word processing program! Small typographical errors will not result in a penalty unless excessive, indicating carelessness. The report will be graded primarily on proper format, content and analysis of data. 2. List any additional references at the end of the report. Footnotes or journal-style citation may be used, but are not necessary unless required by your GTA. 3. Organize the report before you begin to write. An outline is the best tool to do this. Each report should be sufficiently detailed, but yet concise. Do not ramble on just to increase the length of the report. Do not repeat statements or write disjointed sentences merely to increase the length of a report! 4. The format of a formal laboratory report must actually use the words Introduction , Materials and Methods , Results and Discussion as headings beginning the appropriate section of your lab report. Do not make your report ‘cute’ by beginning with an elaborate cover page full of unnecessary photographs or drawings. 5. An incomplete report (title page with student name and sparse information) will not be accepted under any circumstances and will not be considered a “first report” to allow students to write a complete “second report” later in the semester! R EPORT F ORMAT Introduction (7-8 points maximum) Begin the report with a clear identification of the subject. Provide only the background material that is clearly relevant to the topic. Be sure to define the problem(s) the exercise was designed to investigate. Introduce the subject at hand, describe your sample or specimen (including scientific nomenclature), how and why certain reactions occur and other information that will help an uninformed reader understand the topic better. The laboratory manual and the course text provide a starting point but must not be the sole sources. Do an internet search for more information. A source like Wikipedia may be used, but since it is a compilation of material provided by the general public, it is sometimes incomplete and even clearly inaccurate. Do not copy phrases or sentences word-for-word. This is plagiarism – cheating!
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1510 Report Student - BIOLOGY 1510 LABORATORY REPORTS The...

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