The Catholic University Of America

School of Engineering

Washington, DC 20064


Lab Report


title of A specific experiment






Fall 2017 ENGR 395-0X

Engineering Materials Laboratory



Prepared by



Your Name HERE






Team A/B



Submitted on



Month Day, 2017




This is a single paragraph (with no references or equations) that summarizes the key background information of the experiment and major findings you will get from the experiment. This paragraph must be concise as possible while containing the necessary information.


When preparing this paragraph, try to answer the following questions:

  • What is the objective of this experiment (What are the material properties you measured or the structural behavior you explored)?
  • Why are such properties/behavior so important in your field (What are the significant engineering applications)?
  • What experimental approaches/tools you used? What are the specific specimens you tested? How did you analyze the data (by curve plotting, side-by-side comparison, etc.)?
  • What are your major findings? (Do they agree with theories you learned from previous coursework or information you obtained from the library/internet?)
  • What are the implications of such findings (Can you make any recommendations or warnings for potential engineering applications in your fields)?


Keywords:  Pick the several words/phrases that best describe the key components/features of the experiment.


  1. Introduction


This section describes the background of the subject that is to be tested/observed in the present experiment. Please note the information provided in the handout for each experiment is intentionally kept to a minimum. You are expected to search in textbooks or internet to obtain more comprehensive knowledge of the subject in your own field.


In the “Introduction” section, you can write multiple paragraphs, each having an individual focus. For example, you may want to discuss:

  • Why is this subject so important for engineering applications in general and/or in your own field?
  • Any real-world engineering failures due to lack of relevant knowledge on this subject?


  1. Materials and Method


Describe what engineering materials you tested in the experiment. List the key steps for conducting the experiment in our lab. Try to use your own words instead of simply copying those from the lab handouts.


  1. Results and Discussion


Plot the data (connecting the dots, curve fitting, histograms…) and/or put data in a table. Please note all figures/graphs/flowcharts should be numbered, have captions, and be referenced in the main text (otherwise, the figure should be removed). Same rules apply to tables.


Discussion of the experimental data is the most important component of a lab report. You should take time to carefully examine the data, and try to find any trend suggested by the data. Ask yourself the following question: Does the trend make sense based on what you have learned from other classes or information you have found from the literature/internet?


Another important portion is to discuss the possible experimental errors in the data or mistakes your team made during the experiment. Use your best judgment to explain why the data are different from theoretical values. You will still be able to get most of the grade for a lab report, provided you successfully identify the key sources of errors/mistakes and discuss in detail what you can do to avoid such mistakes or reduce the errors if you could conduct the experiment all over again.


  1. Conclusions


Use only a few sentences to summarize your major findings from the present experiment.




This part is optional. You may want to take this opportunity to thank your team members, who have made this experiment a success and/or a great learning experience.




A scientific writing requires that all referenced sources be listed and numbered at the end of the main text and referenced by their respective numbers in the main text. You may want to follow this practice.



————————— This is the end of the lab report template. ————————————


Special notes:


  • Write what you did in past tense and the general knowledge and your discussion in present tense.


  • Write your report as neat as possible (you are what you write). Make the font size and style consistent throughout the whole report.


  • Try to avoid drawing a graph/flowchart by hand. But if you have to, make sure it is neat and legible.


  • Proofread your writing before submission!


  • Plagiarism is strictly prohibited.

–     You are expected to write your own report. Copying other’s reports, in part or as a whole, will be a clear violation of the University rules and never be accepted.


–     When you find a useful source of information, you should put the name of that source            in the “References” section and refer to it by a number in the main text. It is suggested    that you rephrase the original text of the referenced source. If you find it difficult to rephrase it, you are allowed to include the original sentences in your report, provided          double quotation marks are properly used and the original source is identified.

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