Date: Wed, 09 Nov 2011 01:56:02
Subject: Re: standard physics lab report?
For example, I googled "how to write a physics lab report." Here is a summary of the first ten instruction sets:
Northern Kentucky University
1. Cover Sheet
4. Experimental procedure
5. Sample Calculations
7. Tabulated Results (includes % difference and error)
9. Answers to Questions
10. Raw Data
3. Theoretical Background
4. Experimental Design and Procedure
5. Analysis (includes reduced data and calculations)
University of New Hampshire
2. Purpose & Theory
3. Procedure and Apparatus
4. Data (includes all raw data and graphs)
6 Results & Conclusions
Arizona State University
4. Data (raw data only)
5. Evaluation of Data (includes graphs and calculations)
Western Kentucky University
1. Title page
3. Description of Experiment
4. Data and Analysis (includes raw data, tables, graphs, calculations)
5. Results and Conclusions (includes % error calculations)
6. Data tables and graphs may go at the end if convenient
1. Experimental Description
2. Discussion of Graphs
3. Uncertainty Analysis Discussion (includes % difference)
4. What did you think of the experiment?
5. What would you do to improve the experiment?
6. Inquiry Based Lab Conclusions
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
4. Equipment used (includes data)
5. Analysis (includes tables and graphs)
WikiHow: How to Write a Physics Lab Report
1. Title Page
4. Theory (Give mathematical equations and simplify them step by step)
5. Tables, observations, and calculations.
6. Draw neat diagrams and label them completely
1. Title Page
3. Data Sheets (includes both raw and processed data)
5. Sample Calculations
6. Discussion of Results
3. Summary or Abstract
5. Theory and Analysis
6. Apparatus / Materials
7. Experimental Procedures
8. Data and Results
10. Conclusions and Recommendations
11. Acknowledgements (usually unnecessary)
----- Original Message -----
From: Jerry DiMarco
Date: Tuesday, November 8, 2011 5:38 pm
Subject: Re: [tap-l] standard physics lab report?
> I think this is a valid concern. After a few years here, it
> evident there was no department wide policy on the role of labs in
> education. Lab manuals were not uniformly written. While
> usually followed the existing manual, they or the TAs might take a
> different approach to the labs. Consequently the students' lab
> could be different from one section to the next or one semester to
> the next.
> Most of our lab manuals have guidelines for keeping notebooks
> writing lab reports. In addition, my predecessor accumulated lab
> from several other institutions. A few of them have guidelines for
> reports, though most are only a paragraph or two. But I would bet
> and possibly books have already been written on this topic. It
> might make
> more sense to check the literature first so we don't end up
> reinventing the
> At 11/8/2011 03:32 AM, you wrote:
> >I have visited dozens of institutions to see how lab reports are
> >and it seems that every place is different. There is always some
> >of Abstract / Introduction / Theory / Data / Calculations /
> Results /
> >Analysis / Graphs / Discussion / Conclusion (never all of these at
> >and many various ways to present error, (propagation, %
> difference, etc).
> >Inevitably there is the "example lab report" which varies widely
> >place to place.
> >Has anyone ever tried to come up with a standard physics lab
> report that
> >is consistent across institutions? Or has anyone tried to
> >within their own institution so that the science lab reports are
> >consistent across the various disciplines?
> >Even further; a standard rubric by which to grade these reports?
> >Along the same vein, could anyone suggest a standard way to
> perform a
> >notebook entry?
> >I think it would be worthwhile for a large number of lab directors
> to come
> >to an agreement on what a lab report should look like.
> >John Cockman
> Jerry DiMarco
> Manager of Lecture Demonstrations and Instructional Labs
> Montana State Univ., Physics Dept.
> Bozeman, MT
> Our Motto: "A demo a day helps learning to stay"