August 16, 2015

Lab Reports and Papers

Lab reports, scientific papers, and white papers have specific details that need to be included. Lab reports and scientific papers usually present data, procedures and outcomes in an effort to persuade others to accept or not to accept a hypothesis. Often these papers are classed as scientific knowledge and provide a record of the theory and its accompanying evidence.

Lab reports and scientific papers usually have a title, an abstract, an introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion and literature cited. Make sure that these papers are logical and make sense to the reader. Do not use “I”, “you” or “we”. It helps to use the past tense with these papers. Scientific writing uses the metric system of measurement. Write numbers as numerals, not words, if greater than ten or associated with measurement. Make sure somebody else reads your report before you submit to spot errors or inconsistencies.

White papers generally introduce innovative products or technology. These papers influence and often are used for strategy or documentation. When writing a white paper, know your audience. It helps to stay in the active voice and use non-technical vocabulary. Make sure that you have an easy to follow and interesting abstract. Write out your problem then describe your product. Show your reader how your product solves the problem with evidence. Have a conclusion that refers back to your original abstract and summarizes your findings, especially your solutions. Make sure that somebody else reads the paper before publication.