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Lab Report Chem IA Question [Validity/Accuracy/Reliability]

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Hi Everyone,

I'm currently writing up a DCP/CE IA for Chemistry where we have to calculate the rate of reaction and I had a quick question in regards to the evaluation. There's no theoretical value for the experiment, which means that when I'm writing up my evaluation I'm not sure how to describe the impact of my limitations/weaknesses on the experiment e.g. if they impacted on accuracy,reliability or validity. I don't think I should use the term accuracy because that refers to how close your experimentally calculated value is close to the theoretical value (and we don't have one of those). Does that mean I discuss how the errors I have identified impacted on reliability and validity? I'm a little bit confused about which of the 3 things to talk about :confused:. I would really appreciate if someone could give me some advice on this! Thank you :)!

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You're right, you shouldn't use accuracy to describe your results because you don't have a theoretical value for your particular experiment. Unless you wanted to find one on the internet or through your teacher, you can't really compare your result to the literature value. Instead, just talk about how reliable/valid you think the results are. You can just use a common sense approach. Although you don't know the actual rate, if for example you were doing an experiment to find the rate of a neutralization reaction that took place at a very high temperature and involved powdered pieces of reactant, and you got a very very small rate, you would know that your results may not be very reliable, and you could talk about possible sources of error (either systematic or random) that could have impacted that.

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