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If you are taking a biology course, at some point you will have to do lab experiments. This means that you will also have to complete biology lab reports.

The purpose of writing a lab report is to determine how well you performed your experiment, how much you understood what happened during the experimentation process, and how well you can convey that information in an organized fashion.


Biology Lab Reports: Formats

  • A good lab report has a format that includes five main sections. They are the introduction, methods and materials, results, discussion and conclusion, and citation.
  • Keep in mind that individual instructors may have a specific format that they require you to follow. Please be sure to consult your teacher about the specifics of what to include in your lab report.

Introduction:

  • The introduction of a lab report states the purpose of your experiment. Your hypothesis should be included in the introduction, as well as a brief statement about how you intend to test your hypothesis.
  • To be sure that you have a good understanding of your experiment, some educators suggest writing the introduction after you have completed the methods and materials, results, and conclusion sections of your lab report.

Methods and Materials:

  • This section of your lab report involves producing a written description of the materials used and the methods involved in performing your experiment. You should not just record a list of materials, but indicate when and how they were used during the process of completing your experiment.
  • The information you include should not be overly detailed, but should include enough detail so that someone else could perform the experiment by following your instructions.

Results (present the data):

  • The results section should include all tabulated data from observations during your experiment. This includes charts, tables, graphs, and any other illustrations of data you have collected. You should also include a written summary of the information in your charts, tables, and/or other illustrations. Any patterns or trends observed in your experiment or indicated in your illustrations should be noted as well.

Analysis (process the data):
  • Construct all graphs needed to show results
    • Correct type (bar, line, pie)
    • Title
    • Appropriate Axis
    • Labeled Axis
    • Legend
  • Labeled diagrams or photos

Discussion and Conclusion:
  • This section is where you summarize what happened in your experiment. You will want to fully discuss and interpret the information. What did you learn? What were your results? Was your hypothesis correct, why or why not? Were there any errors? If there is anything about your experiment that you think could be improved upon, provide suggestions for doing so.

Sources (each an individual section):
  • References: Works cited in your lab report in the introduction and/or conclusion.
  • Appendix: Put any formulas needed to calculate the data presented or references in the lab report.
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  • Last Modified: Wednesday 24 February 2021, 18:19:05.