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Lab Report Rubric and Guides
Chemistry Materials from Ray Tedder

Lab Report Grading Rubric: 
These are the things that Mr. Tedder will look for when grading lab reports.  This rubric is subject to change without notice.
Note: Students are NOT required to complete all sections for ALL labs.  Only those sections assigned will be graded.

Formal Lab Report Guide:


1.       All data recorded during a lab should be recorded in pen with the date, times and lab participants names on it.

2.       Write lab reports on computer using only block type fonts (such as Times New Roman or Tahoma). 

3.       Write only on one side of the page.

4.       Double space the text of the report.  Single space title, date, & location.  Single space table & figure descriptions.




Your name & lab partners names (You must identify who the writer is and who the lab partners are).


Date or dates that this lab was conducted.


Location that the lab was conducted (Room 215A Lab, Dorman High School, Roebuck SC)


I.        Objectives: This is a statement of the purpose of the lab.  You must explain what are you trying to do or find out and indicate the method that was used.  This should be no more than one to three sentences.


II.      Procedure:   This is a step-by-step description of what did, what equipment and supplies were used, and what methods were used. Keep this as short as you can while being detailed enough that another person could do this lab without you using these instructions.


III.    Hazards:  List the hazardous chemicals or procedures, what those hazards are (as they apply to this lab and procedure).  Include these in a table or bulleted list.


IV.    Data Table(s):  If this table is or tables are particularly complex, you should include only the most significant data in this section and include more detailed tables with all data in one of the appendices.  If you include it as an appendix you must refer to it (in parentheses) in the text of your main lab report.  If you chose to include this as an appendix, then the final and most significant results of your data must be included in at least one table in your main report.  All data tables should be labeled immediately above the table (no double spacing) with a number and description.  Example:  Table 2. Average of lab group data for distance D and length of distance S.  Graphs and figures belong in VII. Discussion/Analysis.


V.      Results: These are your actual results and your actual observations or readings, without commentary, analysis, or speculations about the outcome.  A chart is not enough; you must explain in text what you saw or the readings you took.  You must also include a mention of the method you used for computing the percent error.  If this experiment does not call for a percent error analysis, you must say that here.


VI.    Calculations:  Include only one example of each important calculation.  All calculations not included in the body of the report must be attached one of the appendices.  If you include it as an appendix you must refer to it in the text of your main lab report (n parentheses) and the results of your calculations must be included in the report.  Your calculations must include a method for computing percent error, if the lab includes a comparison of numbers.


VII.  Discussion/Analysis:  This tells the reader what your lab accomplished.  You should always include balanced chemical equations.  If your data can be analyzed in a graph then you are required to graph the data and include as a figure in this section.  Figures should have a title, properly labeled axes, and should be labeled as a figure underneath.  In your Discussion/Analysis you must address questions such as: Did the lab accomplish what you thought it would, or did you obtain some other result and why?  Did the observations or readings indicate something or not?  Your discussion/analysis must be reasonable.  Your discussion/analysis must include any reasonable explanations for suspected or known errors.  If this lab calls for a percent error calculation, the result and explanation for the error must be included in this section.  Any drawings or graphs should be labeled below the table as a figure with title with a number.  Example: Figure 1.  Times for iodine clock reaction to take place vs. concentration of iodine solution.  If you wrote your chart on one piece of paper during lab and transferred the data to another to this report, you must include the original as an appendix and refer to it in the text.  If your data can be analyzed in a graph, then it must be graphed and that graph must be a part of your Discussion / Analysis section.   


VIII.            Conclusion:  You must say, in your own words, what the results and analysis tell you.  This is a summary of the objective, results, discussion/analysis, implications of what you found, and where you or other researchers should go from here.  You must explain what did this experiment tells you about what was actually happening on a molecular level.  You must explain if your data gives you enough information to reach an actual conclusion, or just a suspicion (your explanation must be reasonable and you must have with a conclusion or a suspicion).  You must explain if you have enough data to reach a conclusion or if more experimentation needed to reach a conclusion (and your explanation must be reasonable).  If more experimentation is needed, you must explain what kind of experimentation is needed and why it is needed.  Hint: more experimentation is always needed, because all answers lead to new questions.  This all sounds like a lot, but a typical conclusion should be rather short.


Lab Report Grading Sheet: This grading instrument is subject to change as the instructor deems necessary.  
Title (Points Possible: 6) Self Tchr Other
Title is on a separate title page.       Points Possible: 6
Title is centered both vertically and horizontally.      
Title clearly indicates objective.      
Title indicates how objective will be reached (the method used).      
Title is placed properly (centered if on a title page).       
Title is in correct form (title is a statement).      
Names (Points Possible: 4) Self Tchr Other
Name of writer is present in correct location (lower right hand side of the title page).       Points Possible: 4
Writer is clearly indicated and labeled.      
Name(s) of lab partners is present in correct location (lower right hand side of the title page).      
Lab partners are clearly indicated and labeled.      
Dates (Points Possible: 2) Self Tchr Other
Date of lab is present in correct location (lower right hand side of the title page).       Points Possible: 2
Date is in correct form (date, month, year).      
Location(s) (Points Possible: 2) Self Tchr Other
Location of lab is present in correct location (lower right hand side of the title page).       Points Possible: 2
Location is in correct form (room #, school name, city and state) (date, month, year).      
All Sections (Points Possible: 8) Self Tchr Other
Title page (including title, name, and location), table labels, and figure labels are single spaced.       Points Possible: 8
Text of report is double spaced (not the title page or the table or figure labels).      
Block type is used (Tahoma, New Times Roman, Arial, and that sort… not comic sans and the like).      
12 point font used (except for the title).      
Personal pronouns and other words and phrases referring to lab group members are NOT present.       
Correct numbering of section titles (as indicated on the "Formal Lab Report Guide").      
Section titles are numbered with Roman numerals.      
Section titles are present and are in correct form (as indicated in the "Formal Lab Report Guide").      
Sections required for this assignment (some sections may not be required - if so, draw an "x" through those)
Section I. Objectives (Points Possible: 5) Self Tchr Other
Statement of the purpose of the lab is present.       Points Possible: 5
Statement of the purpose of the lab correctly indicates the end result that is sought (the hypthesis).      
Statement of the purpose of the lab correctly indicates the method used to obtain end result.      
Statement of the purpose is clear.      
Statement of the purpose is succinct (generally, no more than 3 sentences).      
Section II. Procedure (Points Possible: 3) Self Tchr Other
Procedures are present.       Points Possible: 3
Procedures are clear.      
Procedures are in sufficient detail for another student to follow.      
Section III. Hazards (Points Possible: 3) Self Tchr Other
Hazards are present.       Points Possible: 3
Hazards are clear.      
Hazards contain required information and in sufficient detail (as outlined in class).      
Section IV. Data Table(s) (Points Possible: 9) Self Tchr Other
Data Table(s) are present.       Points Possible: 9
Data Table(s) are clear.      
Data table(s) contain all the observations and calculations that should have been obtained in the lab.      
Data Table(s) are clear for another student to understand the important and essential information.      
Data Table(s) have labels that inidcate what information are in the table(s) and the context & importance of that information.      
Data Table(s) have labels in the correct location and format.      
Measurement units are present for all data in the appropriate column or row label(s).      
In cells where measurements are written, there are no letters or symbols (only numbers).      
Correct number of significant digits for all measurements is used for all measurements and numbers.      
Subtotal (add all the points earned on this page):      
Copy the subtotal from the bottom of the previous page here      
Section V. Results (Points Possible: 5) Self Tchr Other
Results are present.       Points Possible: 5
Results are clear.      
Results are in sufficient detail for another student to understand the important information.      
Information other than results are NOT present (no analysis, no conclusions, etc.).      
All results are present.      
Section VI. Calculations (Points Possible: 8) Self Tchr Other
Calculations section is present.       Points Possible: 8
Calculations are correct.      
All necessary calculations and equations from lab are present.      
Calculations are in in proper form (dimensional analysis)      
Calculations and equations are clearly explained.      
Calculations and equations have correct labels (Example 1:  Eq 1.  Example 2: Sample calculation).          
Units and species are present for all numbers.      
Rounding off of answers is performed and in proper form (underlining, arrows):      
Section VII. Discussion/Analysis (Points Possible: 19) Self Tchr Other
Discussion/analysis is present.       Points Possible: 19
Objective(s) is/are summarized.      
Procedures are summarized.       
Results are summarized.       
Data table(s) is/are summarized.       
Calculations and equations are referred to.      
Discussion/analysis deals with what the lab actually accomplished.      
Balanced chemical equations are present (where appropriate).      
Chemical equations--when present-- must be placed next to the text of the report that mentions and explains it.      
Charts, graphs, illustrations, or pictures are present (as appropriate) including those in appendix.      
Charts, graphs, illustrations, or pictures have correct titles and labels (including units of measurement on axes)
(Ex: "Figure 1. A direct relationship between volume of air vs. temperature is indicated by the linear treandline in the data aquired in the lab.").
Charts, graphs, illustrations, or pictures are clear.      
Graphs have the proper form (scatter graphs that do not "connect the dots").      
Graphs have trendlines (NOT lines or curves that "connect the dots")      
The writer discusses whether the lab results were what was expected and, if not, explains why.        
True analysis is present - deals with results and doesn't go beyond, describes trends, etc. (see Formal Lab Report Guide).      
Analysis is clear and understandable to other students.      
Analysis is grounded in good science.      
The writer discusses possible errors, the percent error, or other calculations needed to analyze data.      
Section VIII. Conclusion (Points Possible: 8) Self Tchr Other
Conclusion is present.       Points Possible: 8
Conclusion deals with what the lab accomplished.      
Conclusion(s) is/are reasonable and is grounded in good science.       
The conclusion is clear and understandable to another student.      
Conclusion makes it clear that the writer understands the science concepts involved.      
Summary of the objective, results, and discussion/analysis is present.      
Accurate summary of the implications or theory of what was found is present.      
Student recommends some future research that might add to the understanding of the results.      
Self Tchr Other
Total (add all the points earned on this page plus the subtotal from the previous page):
      Total Pts Possible: 82
Note: This grading instrument should be viewed as a guide to students
and is subject to change as the instructor deems necessary.  
Points available on this lab: Count all the items that were required for this lab and enter that number here        
Percentage grade: Take total above and divide by the points available on this  lab assignment.
                                           Then take that answer and multiply by 100. Enter that % grade here

If anything is confusing or your have questions about what the above means