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Bio271 Lab 1

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Chris Garside

A Short to Writing about Biology Pg. 164-195 Writing the Results Section o The results section is the most important part of a research report o It has the authors interpretations of the data; this does not include biases, hopes and opinions of the author o However interpretations can change over time o The results of an experiment are usually valid if the experiment is conducted carefully o Results are real but interpretations can change o Results are used to summarize your findings using tables, graphs and words o DO NOT • Discuss why the experiment was performed • Discuss how the experiment was performed • Discuss whether the results were unexpected, expected, disappointing or interesting o Present the data so the reader can make their own observations o Do not interpret them here What is a figure? o Figures includes graphs, photos and tables; tables are not figures o Most of the data will be presented in tables or figures Summarizing Data Using Tables and Graphs o Arrange the data into tables and figures to show trends within the data o Organize your data so • The underlying story is revealed • Task of revealing the story to the reader o There is no right way to examine data o Make a list of which data is worth examining o You can have questions that about the null hypothesis o You don’t have to limit yourself to questions and hypotheses from the beginning of the report o Use the questions in the results to examine the materials and methods section Constructing a summary table o Summary table is used to organize your data and usually not submitted o Goal is to tidy up your data o If one of the organism died make a side note under the table To Graph or not to Graph o Do not assume your data needs graphing o Never present the same data in a graph and a table o Graphs in biology: scatter plots histograms and bar graphs o Scatter graph 1. Each axis of the graph is clearly labeled and includes units of measurements 2. Tick marks are both axes to estimate the values 3. The meaning of each symbols are indicated 4. The symbols can lead to interpretation 5. The symbol are large and easy to tell apart 6. Detailed caption at the bottom o Label the graphs specifically o Always use the same symbols throughout the report Preparing Graphs o You can also have graphs constructed by hand o o Use graph paper o The independent variable is plotted on the x-axis and dependent plotted on the y-axis o Ex. Feeding rates depend on the temperature o Insert breaks into graphs Not falsifying data o Do not make up data The Question: Connect the dots or not? o Different symbols; connect the lines and label each line o In some cases it might make
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