Physics 200 Spring 2009
4th Quarter Physics 200 Lab and Lab Reports
Sign up with a partner for the labs you wish to do each week on the sheets posted on the basement P200 lab door.
Completed lab tickets are due at the beginning of the lab session. You will not be allowed to enter the lab without a ticket, so set aside enough time to do it and to get help if you have questions.
Important notice on expectations for independent work
Though you will work in the lab with a partner and will therefore work from the same data set, you must write a completely independent lab report. To insure that your work is truly independent we forbid the sharing of electronic files related to the labs unless you have prior written permission from the instructor on a case-by-case basis.
Below is an outline of the components of a well-written lab report. We recommend that you use this sheet as a checklist as you prepare your reports.
Your lab instructor may have specific requirements for the style of your report.
Lab report outline:
á Lab day
á Date lab was done
á Lab Partner
á Brief description of experiment and experimental technique (especially if it is novel).
á Main result and its uncertainty
á Statement of whether or not your result has a significant or insignificant discrepancy with accepted value.
á A paragraph or two to put the experiment in scientific context including a brief history of experiments leading to this work (Cite seminal publications that preceded this work.)
á Motivation for this experiment. What new question does it seek to resolve?
á Discussion of general method used in experiment
á Listing/description of sections to come
á Goal here is convince the reader that your experiment actually measures what you say it does. Include:
á A schematic description of the experimental method
á Background theory
á Relevant derivations or references to relevant derivations
á Detailed description of apparatus and procedure
á Include tips for a successful reproduction of your technique
Present data here in properly annotated tables, charts, and graphs. Label all columns and graph axes. Arrange the data in the most useful form for the reader. If you are claiming that two quantities have a linear relationship, you should have a graph of one vs. the other.
á Verbal justification of error estimates
á Sample calculations of uncertainties on calculated quantities
á Table of error estimates (This can be in an appendix)
á Final uncertainty in result
á Summarize results
á Discuss discrepancy. Give some explanation if discrepancy is significant.
á Advice to future experimenters
á You must attach a copy of your raw data as collected in lab.