Mahuta ♥

Lab Report How to write a good biology lab report.

72 posts in this topic

can this apply for Chemistry as well? :D Like, exactly for chemistry too? :)

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say very similar yes. Since the guide my teacher was referring to when he talked about is was for all experimental sciences. But I made this a 'biology one' mostly because that's where my interest is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say very similar yes. Since the guide my teacher was referring to when he talked about is was for all experimental sciences. But I made this a 'biology one' mostly because that's where my interest is.

But it is safe for me to follow this word for word with my Chemistry coursework? :D

(This is great as well for my Extended Essay on Biology)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes it is safe. :)

And yeah, my chem EE supervisor told me an EE in an experimental science is basically an extended lab report. :)

So basically for the EE you are going to have an 'Introduction' before the hypothesis which should be long. Then make everything a little more detailed..and dada! you have a biology EE.

P.S This is how my teacher told me..including the 'dada!' :P

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Should there be a section for background information in the design? It seems that on this list the background info is mixed in with the hypothesis, but I was told I should have a section for background info.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you want to make it long, then yeah okay. But you don't have to, the things you need to 'introduce' are the things you're going to talk about in your hypothesis, so they might as well be in the same paragraph.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, what are the criteria for Data Collection in a laboratory report? I have no idea what to include in mine except for the data collected which are photos so no text whatsoever.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's the criteria table for DCP:

727l6nid1kjw56zufe59.jpg

What do you mean only photos? If it's like photos of certain things before and after, then you can make a table for that. Doesn't always have to be numbers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a question concerning Evaluation. Wouldn't it be far more convenient to write the improvements directly after that you have presented a limitation, so that the examiner would more clearly be able to see why the improvement is relevant? Then you could split up the paragraphs after number of limitations/improvements rather than having one paragraph for all limitations and one for all improvements.

Additionally, we never included Apparatus, Variables or Method in regular lab reports (just for design labs), is that wrong? I'm not worried though, as they were just practise labs. :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For your first question, certainly. You can do it any way you want as long as it's coherent and easy to follow. :)

For your second one: Very wrong! Variables must be included, let alone the method! In fact, the variables and method both take one of the 3 aspects of the criteria. Also, we were told to always always include the list of apparatus and not miss a single thing we use.

50o3aui8039ulb5stt0d.jpg

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Obviously we did include independent and dependent variables through the aim, and on second thought possibly the controlled variables as well. Though I am sure that we did not include neither apparatus nor method. It surprises me as my teacher usually is very solid, but we might have skipped those for practise purposes. We included them for writing design labs, so I would believe she knows about them.

Thanks for your help anyway, I'll ask my teacher about it if we're not supposed to do it for next lab either. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Hinuku if you didn't make any quantitative data collection then your pictures are the only thing that you can put in your data collection.

@Soiboist actually the IB examiner doesn't care about your presentation/format of the lab report. I've seen a lot of labs whose CE is put under only one Heading which is Conclusion&Evaluation and everything is put all over this section (so it's like what you want, the improvements can come after each limitation). I've also seen a lot whose CE is split into Conclusion, Limitations and Improvements (so 3 sections). both are acceptable and I myself would go with the first method (everything under the same heading).

EDIT: whoops! didn't see Mahuta's response on the next page.

and Soiboist are you even in IB yet? or are you in IB MYP? you need to list your variables and apparatus and write the method under separate headings so it's easier for the examiner to mark. the variables must be listed in design labs, but in DCP/CE you don't need them.

Edited by dessskris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm confused about how specific the variables/ hypothesis should be.

For example, which is better:

Independent: light intensity

Dependent: rate of photosynthesis

If the light intensity is increased, then the rate of photosynthesis will increase, because....

OR

Independent: wattage of light bulb, which changes light intensity

Dependent: Amount of effervescence produced, showing the rate of photosynthesis

If the light intensity is increased by increasing the wattage of the light bulb, then the rate of photosynthesis, shown by oxygen production, will also increase, because...

I was told to keep the hypothesis at one sentence and I don't know how to do that without creating long, run on sentences.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the first one.

usually in my designs, I put a "Method" section before my "Procedures" where I explain "Method of data collection" and "Method of controlling the controlled variables".

in my "Method of data collection" I usually explain how to change the independent variable and how to record the dependent variable, so if you wrote:

Independent: light intensity

Dependent: rate of photosynthesis

in the "Variables" section, then in this Method of data collection you can explain how you change the light intensity (by changing the wattage of light bulb) and how you measure the rate of photosynthesis (from the Amount of effervescence produced).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks :) Another question. Do I need to show calculations for mean and standard deviation in my data processing, or can I just make a chart of the values, graph it, and indicate that the data was processed using Excel?

The formula for SD and mean are pretty obvious, and I don't have any uncertainties in this lab that would be relevant to the calculations.

Edited by SmilingAtLife:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

you need to show like the formula of how you find the average and std and then show ONE example for each (in your data processing) and then since you have LOTS of data, put a table for the rest of the data. but the formula and one example are necessary :yes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks again. How many sig. digs/ decimal places do we need for the standard deviation? The raw data is a counted number and the mean has 1 dp, 1 sig dig.

Edited by SmilingAtLife:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How do I measure/write uncertainties for units? Like for if my timer is to 1 decimal place, what would it be? If it was to 2 decimal place what would it be ?.. Sorry, jst a bit confused.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The uncertainty of each apparatus should be printed on it. If it's not, then the uncertainty is the half the smallest division. For example, a ruler that with 0.1cm division will have an error of +/- 0.05cm.

So if your timer is to 1 decimal point..say 0.1 seconds, then the uncertainty would be +/- 0.05 seconds. Similarly if it's 0.01 seconds then the uncertainty is 0.005 seconds That being said, almost every apparatus would have the error on it.

As to how it's written, just put it at the top of each column like shown in the example above.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Doesn't mean you can't include a hypothesis, it makes it better, hence the title.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really now? If you say so, I just wanted to point that out to people who define 'better' as obtaining a high grade and spending less time.

BTW in the CE you need to compare the literature value with obtained value and compare the difference with the errors. Anyone who doesn't do this will be getting a 1/2 max for 'evaluating procedure'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really now? If you say so, I just wanted to point that out to people who define 'better' as obtaining a high grade and spending less time.

BTW in the CE you need to compare the literature value with obtained value and compare the difference with the errors. Anyone who doesn't do this will be getting a 1/2 max for 'evaluating procedure'.

I know that it is good to have a comparison between the difference in lit. Value and your value, but i don't think that it is a "must' since IB knows that some labs like enzyme or reaction activity has no lit. value.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why are you being so offensive about this again? You don't want to include a hypothesis..just don't add one. Simple as that.

As for CE, that's not something you must do. I asked a biology teacher( an IB examiner) about it back then and he said I don't have to include that and people got almost perfect grades without including it too. Once again, you want to include..just include. Simple as that. You don't have to be so tacky about it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now