How to Write Lab Reports

A lab report is expected for each experiment that you perform in Chem 201/202. Generally speaking, these reports are constructed as separate documents from your lab notebook, and evaluated separately from notebook entries.

Not all reports are of the same type. Experiments involving the preparation of new compounds will usually be reported using a “research journal article”-type format typically used in organic chemistry research journals. Journals for other scientific fields, and even other fields within chemistry, use different formats so please read and adhere to the instructions on the following pages carefully. A significant part of your report grade will be based on how well you follow these instructions.

To help accustom you to the conventions of technical writing in organic chemistry, some of the Chem 201 experiments are accompanied by sample lab reports. These are models that should be plagiarized to whatever extent is appropriate.