Science Lab Notebook (How to write one and get an "A")

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By: Rockout101 305
February 11, 2010 | Chemistry - Any Lab TA
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If you follow this guide you will for sure get an A on any lab. The TA's all love this.

Introduction.
                In one sentence each; state the purpose, the techniques, how the results will be checked, and why the experiment is important.
 
Background
                You need to have references, these should be cited within the text, i.e. (Vassall, 23) as well as a full citation at the end of the report.  You also need to discuss any limitations to the experiment ( ex. Does it have to be done with high temp and pressure? Does it sublime? Can it only be done in microscale? Etc.), your lab partner is not a limitation.
 
Procedure
                Must be written in past tense, summarize into paragraph form, about ½ a page
 
Results
                You need to show everything that you calculated along with the calculations and any other significant results (I don’t need to know how much the filter paper weighs).  Only include data, no interpretation of data.
 
Discussion
                If you calculated something, or it was significant enough to put in the results section, you need to talk about it in the discussion.  Tell me if your data supports that you actually created the product.  More than likely you made an error, talk about that.  Your melting point was probably not spot on, and you probably didn’t get a 100% yield.
 
Conclusion
                Of your melting point was 40 degrees wide, the experiment was not a success.  You may have learned the principles, but that is in no way considered a success.  Say something about how effective the experiment was (not in wasting your time), in how much product you go compared to how much you should have got.
 
Pre-lab and Lab data
                The YELLOW copy is the one that should be attached.    There should be 2 of MY signatures on those sheets, if one or both are missing I will count off.  You may not write the first half of the lab report (intro, background, and procedure) as you pre-lab and have that double as the actual lab report.

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