Biology Question

In science, reporting what has been done in a laboratory setting is incredibly important for communicating, replicating, and validating findings. However, writing scientific reports can be a little overwhelming. There is a set of agreed-upon components that the scientific community requires when reporting scientific research. Answer the following questions to describe what occurred during the lab you conducted in Labster. Be sure to use complete sentences and descriptions that fully represent what you experienced. Writing a lab report is less about being correct or incorrect than it is accurately reporting what happened and why. So, do not worry about reporting data that might seem counterintuitive or unexpected. Focus on clearly communicating what you did and what you observed.

What was the title of the lab you completed?

What was the subject you were trying to understand better in the lab?

What information from the textbook and classroom is relevant for the subject you were trying to gain a better understand of in the lab? Identify the concepts and explain how they are related to the lab topic.

  • During the lab, what information from the theory section provided additional background information about the subject? (To review the theory section, launch the lab and click the Theory tab on the top of the data pad). Identify the concepts and explain how they are related to the lab topic.
  • Most scientific observation involves examining phenomena or processes. What phenomenon or process were you observing in the lab? What were you able to change and explore? What did the simulation not allow to change?
  • You have already described the phenomenon or process you studied in the lab in the previous section. Now, take some time to fully describe the steps you took during the lab. Do not include the process of you logging into the lab in your description. For this virtual lab, a short, high-level summary will suffice. 
  • Describe some of the observations you made. What did you write down or keep track of? What did each of your senses observe during the lab process? What did you see (e.g., changes in colors, movement, shapes, sizes, patterns)? What, if anything, did you measure? What did you hear (e.g., sounds from reactions, collisions, error messages)? What did your lab character touch? Did you notice anything that seemed unexpected? Did you notice anything that you did not expect to observe?
  • Which parts of the lab required you to think more than others and required more time? Which parts were simple and completed easily?
  • What did you notice about the phenomenon or process you explored? 
  • Describe any information about the phenomenon or process that you learned.
  • During your lab, what happened that might have had an impact on the accuracy of your observations? Did the simulation alert you that an error was occurring? If so, how did you resolve it?
  • The discussion section also is used to summarize big ideas from the lab. What were the important learnings about the phenomenon or process from the lab?
  • After scientists have identified how the new knowledge fits into the old knowledge, they discuss the implications of the new information for moving forward. In this class, the purpose of study is to learn some foundational science ideas represented by the course learning outcomes. Review the course learning outcome aligned to this lab in the assignment directions in Blackboard. How is the information from this lab related to the course learning outcome? What knowledge has the lab supported you with learning that is related to this course learning outcome?
  • Following scientific research, scientists usually come up with new questions that result from what they learned. These new questions often end up leading to new research in the future. What additional scientific things do you wonder about after completing and writing about your lab experience? 
  • Topic
  • Background Information
  • Method

Describing what you did during a lab supports other scientists in replicating your work. It is through this consistent replication that scientists are able to see repeating patterns and develop ideas that help move science forward. When you discuss your observations, in a later section, you will have to describe, in detail, what you did. You may also have to describe what choices you made, why you made them, and any concerns about things that occurred that were unexpected. To have enough information to do this, you need to keep very detailed notes. What doesn’t seem important in the moment may end up being something that explains your findings later. A benefit of conducting virtual labs when learning science, is that many potential errors are controlled for you. The virtual lab environment often will alert you if something is not going the way it should. This does not occur in non-virtual settings. The virtual lab setting can be very helpful to learners for this reason. However, we still need to practice documenting so those skills are practiced for the lab experiences when technology will not be there as a coach.

Observations

Many lessons learned from scientific research come from the reporting and analysis of data and observations. This part of scientific reporting requires detailed descriptions of technical information and observations, as well as high-level synthesis of information. High-level synthesis requires a mastery of foundational content in the related scientific field and a complementary mastery in some field of quantitative and/or qualitative analysis. For this report, let’s focus on big picture patterns. 

Discussion

The discussion section is used to explain why things might have happened the way that they did in your research. Here, scientists describe any potential anomalies or mistakes and why they think they may have occurred. 

Conclusion

The conclusion section of a lab report describes how the learnings from the lab research fit in to prior scientific knowledge. This is done by comparing new information to previously known information that was identified in the section of your report that discusses background information.

Biology Question

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