From 2010-2013 I have been demonstrator for first year physics lab PHY1027 and in 2012-2013 I have also been demonstrating the first year astrophysics lab.
In the physics lab, I am responsible for:
See also the Mark Scheme and my Assessment Timetable.
Ensure that you do some research before turning up to lab for the experiment. You don't have much time in the lab itself and need it all.
If you have any questions, get in touch with me via email (email@example.com) or find me on the 4th floor.
It is really worth distinguishing between a lab book and a lab report. It will be very important that you keep a lab book as you progress through your studies and move towards research. I know for sure (from experience) that most people can't even remember what they did in an experiment that lasts two weeks, let alone years. It acts as a reference, it acts as record of everything you did (good and bad). It should not be written after the lab, but as you are turning the dials.
Prof. Harries on lab books: if you got hit by a bus, someone should be able to replicate your experiment (including your problems).
Be sure to look at the mark scheme which is posted at the top of this page.
- Bullet points are fine, you don't need chunky paragraphs
- Date, page numbers, units, graph labels goes without saying.
- Don't leave gaps! Saying that you forgot to fill in that gap is not acceptable, since it shouldn't have been left in the first place. If you wanted to add something to an earlier part of your lab book, add it at the first available space and reference to that page from the page you originally wanted the info on. This is one advantage of page numbers.
- Look at your results. If they don't make any sense (e.g. graviational acceleration = 50ms-2 just doesn't seem quite right) then try and think why this is the case. You could be the first person to get it right so you need to check or at least comment on such a unexpected result! This applies to your exams too, if you are calculating the mass of a person and get 1000000kg, it is probably worth reassessing your previous steps.