How to Write a scientific Paper
This is a brief outline of the format for a scientific paper. Your laboratory exercises will require that you follow this scheme:
- Description: Provide a brief description of the experiment which will test
Problem/Questions: Provide a clear statement of the question the experiment is designed to test. Consider how a positive/negative result
will disprove the hypothesis.
Hypotheses: (Note that this is PLURAL!)
- Develop multiple hypothesis ("educated guesses") for the probable
answers to the problems or questions. Provide as many LOGICAL predictions of the solutions to the problems or questions as you
- These are several reasonable predictions regarding the outcome of
EACH set-up whether it is an experimental or control set-up.
- Material and Methods
- (Note - This is a minor part of the paper. If this information was provided to you as part of a write-up, you may reference it and only provide details unique to your actual experiment and lab experience.)
Materials: A simple list of the equipment and supplies used is provided, or it may be presented along with the methods.
- Design an experiment to test the hypotheses.
- The experiment must be carefully planned, with adequate controls, to allow acceptance or rejection of the stated hypotheses.
- The materials and methods employed in testing the hypotheses should be described in enough detail to allow anyone to duplicate the experimental conditions.
- The experiment MUST BE REPEATABLE in that it PROVIDES ESSENTIALLY THE SAME RESULTS when repeated to be valid.
- Experiment (To do, but not part of paper per se.)
- Run the experiment
- Make the observations.
- Collect data: record .
- Organize data: In writing a formal report, the data should be used to develop appropriate charts, tables, or graphs.
- AnalyzeProvide an analysis of the data obtained.
- EvaluateUsing the analysis of the data, accept, reject, or suggest further testing of the stated hypotheses.
- Implications:This should include statements regarding the implications of the results of the experiment. What other questions or problems arise as a result of the analysis of the data?
- Utility: How is the information useful?