In the shorter version of a lab report, the discussion section is typically separated from the results section and serves as a conclusion as well. If you want to write a nice discussion paper, you should express different ideas and opinions on the given topic and provide a discussion based on … Get input on the case from all members of the team, highlighting their involvement. Explain the Meaning of the Findings and Why They are Important. English Report Writing Examples But if you are looking to put your talents to good use as a public speaker and perhaps as a future lawyer, a good training ground would be to join the debate team. Begin by discussing the research question and talking about whether it was answered in the research paper based on the results. If you feel compelled to speculate, be certain that you clearly identify your comments as speculation or as a suggestion for where further research is needed. Use the same key terms, mode of narration, and verb tense [present] that you used when when describing the research problem in the introduction. The Writing Center. Avoid repeating information, unless the information is expanded to provide additional insight. Check the guidelines of the journal to which you plan to submit your study. This demonstrates to the reader you have inadequately examined and interpreted the data. A few historical references may be helpful for perspective but most of the references should be relatively recent and included to aid in the interpretation of your results and/or linked to similar studies. How to write the final elements of a discussion section Most discussions will end with two elements. Systematically explain the meaning of the findings and why you believe they are important. Writing the Discussion The discussion section is a framing section, like the Introduction, which returns to the significance argument set up in your introduction. Make Suggestions for Further Research. In an ideal world, you could simply reject your null or alternative hypotheses according to the significance levels found by the statistics.That is the main point of your discussion section, but the process is usually a lot more complex than that. Let’s accept this: Writing a paper is daunting, and sometimes the most difficult and thought-provoking part is writing the ‘discussion’ section. One of the most common mistakes that you can make when discussing the results of your study is to present a superficial interpretation of the findings that more or less re-states the results section of your paper. Info on abstracts from APA manual: An abstract is a brief, comprehensive summary of the contents of an article, allowing readers to survey the contents quickly. The discussion should cover all of the objectives specified in the report in depth. Describe the patterns, principles, and relationships shown by each major findings and place them in proper perspective. https://wordvice.com/research-writing-tips-editing-manuscript-discussion How to Write a Chemistry Lab Report. A good abstract is: The discussion section should definitely have a statement of your expected findings (Pechenik, 86). University of Toronto; Summary: Using it Wisely. When writing the discussion section, you should carefully consider all possible explanations for the study results, rather than just those that fit your prior assumptions or biases. No one has thought as long and hard about your study as you have. No study is so novel or possesses such a restricted focus that it has absolutely no relation to other previously published research. Don’t just repeat all the data you have already reported – aim for a clear statement of the overall result that directly answers your main research question. This section is often considered the most important part of a research paper because it most effectively demonstrates your ability as a researcher to think critically about an issue, to develop creative solutions to problems based on the findings, and to formulate a deeper, more profound understanding of the research problem you are studying. How to Write an Effective Analytical Report. Find the information. Fourteen Steps to Writing to Writing an Effective Discussion Section. Although your study may offer important insights about the research problem, other questions related to the problem likely remain unanswered. The report should include interpretation of the results, including any new findings from the research. The purpose of the discussion is to interpret and describe the significance of your findings in light of what was already known about the research problem being investigated, and to explain any new understanding or fresh insights about the problem after you've taken the findings into consideration. San Francisco Edit, 2003-2008. This is where you infuse your results with meaning. A company may create its product strategy based on the report findings. In this chapter, you can make references to earlier resear… It is the last part of your paper, in which you summarize your findings in light of the current literature. University College Writing Centre. It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. If more than one unexpected finding emerged during the study, describe each them in the order they appeared as you gathered the data. Therefore, be careful that you do not read more into the findings than can be supported by the evidence you've gathered. San Francisco Edit, 2003-2008; The Lab Report. Sometimes your professor will encourage you to expand the discussion in this way, while others don’t care what your opinion is beyond your efforts to interpret the data. Your Discussion and Conclusions sections should answer the question: What do your results mean? NOTE: Besides the literature review section, the preponderance of references to sources in your research paper are usually found in the discussion section. Consider Alternative Explanations of the Findings. For a qualitative paper, although there is no need for statistical analysis of data, there is still a need to interpret the results for your audience in the Discussion section. An excerpt from the discussion section of a chemistry report Footnote. To write a good discussion for a lab report, learn to present ideas in a less boring format. Venkatesh has more than 25 years of experience in different industries including telecommunications, healthcare, banking and financial management, government, transportation and logistics, education, and consumer goods. For example, if you studied the impact of foreign aid on increasing levels of education among the poor in Bangladesh, it's generally not appropriate to speculate about how your findings might apply to populations in other countries without drawing from existing studies to support your claim. It is important to remember that the purpose of research is to discover and not to prove. After reading the discussion section, you want the reader to think about the results [“why hadn’t I thought of that?”]. Abstract - Write the abstract LAST. The discussion section should remain focused on the findings of your study. A lab report can also be used for criminal investigation by the police personnel. Start this chapter by reiterating your problem statement and research questions and concisely summarising your major findings. Crucial aspects of a lab report are the discussion and conclusion. It is important to remember that the purpose of research is to. If needed, use subheadings to help organize your presentation or to group your interpretations into themes. Write in this section some information about whether your results supported your thesis or there were variances. However, take care not to overspeculate. You should write a direct, declarative, and succinct proclamation of the study results. This part of the paper is not strictly governed by objective reporting of information but, rather, it is where you can engage in creative thinking about issues through evidence-based interpretation of findings. This paragraph should begin with a description of the unexpected finding, followed by a brief interpretation as to why you believe it appeared and, if necessary, its possible significance in relation to the overall study. Each conclusion should be supported with appropriate evidence. This can be followed by any recommendations for further research. III. It is far better for you to identify and acknowledge your study’s limitations than to have them pointed out by your professor! You don’t have to write the report alone. Briefly reiterate for your readers the research problem or problems you are investigating and the methods you used to investigate them, then move quickly to describe the major findings of the study. Here you have to write about your ideas after the experiment was conducted and inform your readers about your thoughts that are based on the results of the experiment. It is far better for you to identify and acknowledge your study’s limitations than to have them pointed out by your professor! This should be no more than one paragraph. If a study that you cited disagrees with your findings, don't ignore it--clearly explain why the study's findings differ from yours. Kretchmer, Paul. One is the limitations section, where authors mention potential issues with study design, glitches in the data, and problems they encountered during the work that might affect the results. The discussion should cover all of the objectives specified in the report in depth. The discussion should indicate whether \the results met the objectives and include the reasons for it. Possibilities include the name of the condition or special treatments that you used. IV. How to write the Discussion section of a scientific research paper. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. Give a brief explanation about why you believe the findings and conclusions of your study are important and how they support broader knowledge or understanding of the research problem. The discussion section should relate your study findings to those of other studies, particularly if questions raised by previous studies served as the motivation for your study, the findings of other studies support your findings [which strengthens the importance of your study results], and/or they point out how your study differs from other similar studies. Comment on their relative importance in relation to your overall interpretation of the results and, if necessary, note how they may affect the validity of the findings. Think of your discussion as an inverted pyramid. The sequencing of providing this information is important; first state the answer, then the relevant results, then cite the work of others. Reiterate the Research Problem/State the Major Findings. general guide to writing reports about scientific research you’ve performed The order of interpreting each major finding should be in the same order as they were described in your results section. Remember that the data are the data: nothing more, nothing less. After you have written the results, start to write a discussion. Fourteen Steps to Writing to Writing an Effective Discussion Section. He has worked for many fortune 500 companies, including Unilever, AT&T, McKesson, and UPS. Avoid repeating information, unless the information is expanded to provide additional insight. Write up the case emphasising the interesting points of the presentation, investigations leading to diagnosis, and management of the disease/pathology. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results. Writing in Psychology course syllabus. II. Your interpretation must be original and you can write from being specific to general and do … Department of Biology. This is especially important when describing the discovery of significant or unanticipated findings. You should: Discuss your conclusions in order of most to least important. Use the present verb tense, especially for established facts; however, refer to specific works and references in the past tense. Do not use words to conceal your facts or reasoning. Even if you like the topic, you might find it complicated to write about it. The discussion can start with a summary of the aims and the results (write about x-fold or % changes rather than just repeating the results) You should try to explain the results, but only within the context of the study - integrating swags of theory into the discussion is not necessary and leads to rambling reports. This should be no more than one paragraph. The conclusion section can also include lessons learned and future research areas that could shed further light on the current experiment. To do this you … Before concluding the discussion, identify potential limitations and weaknesses. Writing up. A key objective of the discussion section is to synthesize the results by providing a logical explanation. The next step is to find the information you need for your report. Usually around 4 to 8 key words or phrases are permitted. Typically, a detailed analysis of findings is provided in the conclusion section, including the reasons for not achieving the predicted outcome if the results did not meet the expectations. Also do not repeat your results, this is a discussion. An abstract is a super-short summary and is difficult to write. Bates College; Hess, Dean R. How to Write an Effective Discussion. A key purpose of the discussion section is to move from specifics to general information. It can also formulate a new theory around the results. The report should link back to the existing hypothesis as documented in the literature review section of the report. Don’t just repeat all the data you have already reported – aim for a clear statement of the overall result that directly answers your main research question. If you need some assistance in understanding how to write reports, ask for a copy of a report that was submitted in the past and use it as a template. The discussion section is where you explore the underlying meaning of your research, its possible implications in other areas of study, and the possible improvements that can be made in order to further develop the concerns of your research. Discussing Your Findings. Venkatesh holds a Ph.D. in computer science from Nova Southeastern University. Avoid using an apologetic tone; however, be honest and self-critical. to formulate a deeper, more profound understanding of the research problem you are studying. If appropriate, the discussion section is also where you state how the findings from your study revealed new gaps in the literature that had not been previously exposed or adequately described. You don’t want to force the reader to go through the paper multiple times to figure out what it all means. In most of the cases, the discussion section revolves around existing theories and hypotheses referenced in the literature review section of the lab report. Start by rewriting your research questions and re-stating your hypothesis (if any) that you previously … Copyright 2020 Leaf Group Ltd. / Leaf Group Education, How to Write a Scientific Conclusion for a Dissertation, The Fundamental Principles of Report Writing, Purdue University: Writing the Experimental Report -- Methods, Results, and Discussion, Penn State University: Writing Guidelines for Engineering and Science Students -- Laboratory Reports, Penn State University: Sample Laboratory Report #2. Relate the Findings to Similar Studies, No study is so novel or possesses such a restricted focus that it has absolutely no relation to other previously published research. For students, discussion often bridges the gap between the speaking and listening learning areas and reading and writing ones. However, do not offer recommendations which could have been easily addressed within the study. Ask the committee members for help or ask for a mentor that has written a report … Begin by briefly re-stating the research problem you were investigating and answer all of the research questions underpinning the problem that you posed in the introduction. George Mason University; Discussion. I. Even if you are sure that they are significant, it doesn’t mean that you should repeat them many times. Read your laboratory report discussion a few times to check if it should be clear to readers. First of all, never select a topic that doesn’t touch you. University of Florida; Yellin, Linda L. A Sociology Writer's Guide. Department of English Writing Guide. Azar, Beth. Note any unanswered questions or issues your study did not address, and.... A conclusion section provides a synopsis of work in which the results findings are mapped to the objectives. Note any unanswered questions or issues your study did not address, and.... Analyzing vs. Summarizing. The discussion section should relate your study findings to those of other studies, particularly if questions raised by previous studies served as the motivation for your study, the findings of other studies support your findings [which strengthens the importance of your study results], and/or they point out how your study differs from other similar studies. You should make suggestions for further research in the discussion section. The first thing to be aware of, when you write a lab report discussions is the Present your thoughts and opinions in an understandable format and all of your readers will get your point of view. Begin this part of the section by repeating what you consider to be your most important finding first. You are trying to bring out the true meaning of your data without being too long. Writing the Discussion Section (printable version here)The Discussion should be written after the Results section so that you have a good idea of what the experiment has demonstrated. This is the section where you need to present the importance of your study and how it may be able to contribute to and/or fill existing gaps in the field. Discussion or Conclusion Once you've discussed the most important findings of your study in the Results section, you will use the Discussion section to interpret those findings and talk about why they are important (some instructors call this the Conclusion section). Interpretation is a subjective exercise. Respiratory Care 49 (October 2004); Kretchmer, Paul. Explain how your findings/results relate to what is already known in the field as well as to what you … Explain the Meaning of the Findings and Why They are Important. Describe the generalizability of your results to other situations, if applicable to the method chosen, then describe in detail problems you encountered in the method(s) you used to gather information. Obviously, you must refer to your results when discussing them, but focus on the interpretion of those results, not just the data itself. That being said, here is how you can write an effective analytical report: Lab reports are an essential part of scientific study and knowledge. It is for this reason that we will look at some oral discussion activities, before examining how to approach the writing of discussion pieces in the classroom. Organize the discussion from the general to the specific, linking your findings to the literature, then to theory, then to practice [if appropriate]. Obviously, you must refer to your results when discussing them, but focus on the, https://library.sacredheart.edu/c.php?g=29803, Fourteen Steps to Writing to Writing an Effective Discussion Section. The discussion section should end with a concise summary of the principal implications of the findings regardless of statistical significance.
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