Essay on Lab Report APA Format

1317 Words Dec 8th, 2014 6 Pages
Running Head: WRITING A FORMAL LAB REPORT

Writing a Formal Lab Report
Using APA Format
Michael Betco
AP Physics 1
ChangZhou Senior High School of Jiangsu Province

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WRITING A FORMAL LAB REPORT

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Abstract

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Writing a Formal Lab Report
Using APA Format
This introduction is also often referred to as the ‘purpose’ or ‘plan’ section. It should include two main categories:
Purpose
(or Objective) This part of the experiment expressed clearly in only one or two sentences, including the main method used to accomplish the purpose. Ex: The purpose of the experiment was to determine the percentage by mass of acetic acid in vinegar using acid/base titration. The purpose is also sometimes written as a separate
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Discussion
The discussion section is the most important part of the report. This is the section where the results are explained, and a student can show the instructor that he or she has a thorough understanding of the concept of the experiment and the results obtained. The main question to be addressed in this section is “What is the significance of the results?” Here are some strategies to help focus your discussion: Compare expected results with actual results. If the experiment

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did not turn out exactly as expected, think about why the results might have been different and try to explain why you got the results you did. Analyze experimental error. There is a degree of error in every experiment, so every lab report should mention potential causes of error. Be specific about what caused the error. Was it due to the equipment? Impurity of the sample?
Errors in calculations? Explain how the methods could be improved. Once you have decided what might have caused error, you should explain how the error might have been avoided. How could the setup be made more effective?

Should you have been more careful with

measurements? How could contamination have been prevented more effectively? Should more precise equipment be used? Explain the results in terms of the purpose. If the original purpose of the experiment

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