3080C-3013C report writing guidelines

3080C-3013C report writing guidelines - EMA 3080C/3013C A...

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EMA 3080C/3013C A Guide for Report Writing Your lab reports will be an introduction to scientific journal style writing. You should take a look at the typical layout of a journal paper. MRS Bulletin , Journal of Materials Research , Acta Materialia , and Applied Physics Letters are some examples. . Sections Each report should contain the following elements: I. Title page Your title page will contain your name, the course number, the lab number and/or title, and the date. This is for my benefit. You would not include this in an actual journal publication. II. Introduction – objectives and motivation for the work, and any necessary concepts and background information. III. Procedure -- description of experimental procedure. IV. Results -- description of results, tables, graphs, images, and etc. V. Discussion – discussion of results VI. Conclusion -- brief summary VII. References Your introduction will provide motivation, objectives, and any necessary background information. You are not to refer to lab reports as, “this lab,” or “this assignment.” You are writing these reports from a formal perspective. Use language such as, “this work,” “this study,” and/or “this investigation.” The introduction is often a difficult section to write. I find students either write too much or too little in this section. Try to tie this section in with your discussion section. You may want to save writing this section for last. Avoid verbose discussion for example, “Materials Science is an important discipline in Engineering.” Statements such as this only take up space and waste the reader’s time. Avoid excessively long introductions. While background and methodology are essential elements in their own right, unless you are writing a review paper, people are most interested in what it is you have done. So, it should go without saying, that most of the body of your report should be focused in these sections. A 3 page introduction and half page discussion makes it look like you're trying to cover-up for a lack of data and a lack of content and overall, it generally just looks bad. The procedure section will describe your procedures so that someone with reasonable scientific knowledge will be able to understand and reproduce your experiments. It is not a list of instructions or a ‘play by play’ commentary. Your lab
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manual contains a list of instructions that you are to follow dutifully; however, this list is not to be reproduced in your report. Pertinent information such as chemicals, concentrations, temperatures, and other experimental parameters should be included. If your paper was intended to report some novel procedure, then you would go into much further procedural detail but most of the time, this is not the case. Do not explain how carefully you conducted your experiments. It is understood that you followed scientific protocols and accurately recorded results. Results and discussion sections may be separate or combined.
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This note was uploaded on 11/16/2011 for the course EMA 3013C taught by Professor Bourne during the Spring '10 term at University of Florida.

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3080C-3013C report writing guidelines - EMA 3080C/3013C A...

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