The Introduction

Whenever you design an experiment you have to first 'set the scene'.

You are not ever finding anything out without any preconceptions. You always have ideas about what you are going to find out - you have expectations!

In a science experiement these expectations will be based on:

- what you have experienced in life,

-experiments you have carried out before and

-scientific knowledge (things you have been taught about science at school, or have found out from books).

In your report you need to explain to the reader what you expect to find out and why! You have to tell them your hypothesis.

You do not have to look into a crystal ball and write down numeric predictions... just predict a general trend. A good way to do this is to sketch a graph!

You do have to explain the main scientific ideas that your prediction is based on. Try to use scientific keywords in this section and explain in simple terms what you understand them to mean.

A Fair Test

A fair test situation is vital for an investigation's results to be meaningful. You therefore have to use the scientific knowledge you have explained to identify the variables in your investigation - things you have to control, otherwise it will not be a fair test. Say what will need to be controlled and why - using theory to explain it.

One of the variables will be the variable you are going to change. Say which on you are going to change and by how much (the range over which you will change it). Say how you found out that was a suitable range. It may well be your preliminaries that helped you decide on a suitable range! Then say have you are going to control all of the others you have identified.

Your fair test must be linked to your scientific knowledge.