How to write a chemistry lab paper

by Sudarsan

Practical lab work is a great way to both test a student’s knowledge and helps them understand the subject better. Many students do not know how to write a chemistry lab paper, especially if they did not have such practice in school. But thanks to tutorials and lectures, there is nothing difficult about it.

Preparing for a Lab

Working with reagents begins with safety. No student will be allowed to work without learning the rules of conduct in the lab. The instructor may simply give a lecture and let you sign the logbook. The most responsible students are reminded of the rules before each practical work. But usually, students learn the safety rules before the first lab, retell them to the instructor, and get clearance for the following work.

During chemical experiments, you will have to use instruments and lab utensils. The most important rules (e.g., using a torch or heating test tubes) will be reminded by the instructor before you start the experiment.

Before you begin your work, the instructor should explain to you the purpose and order of the task. Make sure that you have all the instruments and reagents on your desk. Do not put away your lab journal (or the notebook that replaces it): you will make notes in it as you experiment.

Thinking through the flow of your chemistry lab work is a very important task. Before you start the experiment, you should know exactly what you are going to do and in what order. Do not be afraid, even if you do not know the topic well: you can always approach your teacher or lab technician, use chemistry homework help and clarify how to do chemistry lab work. Since your safety may depend on it, the staff will not refuse to help you.

How to do a chemistry lab paper

Lab paperwork begins with a lab journal and an outline of the experience. Therefore, each action performed should be recorded: what substance and in what amount was taken, with what was mixed, at what temperature was heated. It is on these records you will be guided when you draw up laboratory work.

The rules depend on your specialty and the initiative of the teacher: one may be suitable notebook format A4, and another – only a printed version of the title page. The teacher will be sure to show you his example of lab work in chemistry. This is especially important for the 1st year because you have not yet performed such work and can make mistakes. However, the most important thing in laboratory work is not the size of the font or the indentation of the sheet, but the structure. In your report must necessarily be:

  • The introductory part: a description of the goals and objectives of the experiment, as well as brief theoretical information.
  • Practical part: here you write everything about how you did the laboratory work on chemistry: the order of operations, the course of the work, performed experiments, equations of chemical reactions, and all the necessary calculations. If necessary, you can present the information in the form of graphs and tables.
  • Conclusions: In the summary, you write a brief conclusion of the work done. Was the theory confirmed by the experiment? Why were there discrepancies in the actual results and official data? First of all, the teacher will check this part, so it is worth more attention.

If you submit a printed version of the report on A4 paper, do not forget to make a title page. It should contain the name of the university and department, the number and title of the laboratory work, your name and the name of the supervisor, as well as the city and the year of the work. The standard of text design (font size, spacing, and margins) often change, so it is better to clarify them with the department.

As you can see, there is nothing complicated in the performance or the design of the chemistry lab. During the experiments, you can always ask for help from the teacher. The rules may differ from college to college, but the main thing is the structure of the description of the laboratory work. And if the results do not coincide with the theory, but you are sure that you made no mistakes – try to find the reasons why the experiment was unsuccessful, and be sure to specify them in the conclusions. After all, the successful defense of the laboratory work largely depends on your knowledge of the theory, and not on how correct the results of the experiments were.

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