EC101 LABORATORY ASSSESSMENT MOST COMMON ERRORS IN ENGINEERING REPORT WRITING 

Using subjective statements with words like: I, we, us, our, you, they, etc. The convention is that ALL engineering reports should appear to be objective. Use of these pronouns is severely discouraged (except in Journal papers). e.g.: use “The voltage was measured…” NOT “We measured the voltage...” or “It may be seen that…” NOT “You can see that…” (technically this means you should only use third person passive verbs!).

Using the words “proof / proves” when you mean “demonstrates”, “verifies”, “shows” etc. “Proof” demands a significantly greater level of investigation than you are able to carry out in 2 hours!

In DC circuits, not recording how the current directions, or voltage polarities, presented in your results tables, apply to the layout of the components shown on your circuit diagrams. Magnitudes are no use without polarities.

In AC circuits, not recording the angles together with the magnitudes in your results tables. e.g. V2 = 24V -30 . Magnitudes are no use without angles.

Not using full page A4 size graphs. Presenting them “landscape” style (=sideways) makes full use of the A4 page. Using Excel the best graph style in the chart wizard is “scatter”. In addition you should remove the default shading, and set suitable vertical gridlines on.

Putting the measured and the theoretical values in different results tables. The idea of each lab is to show how theory is verified by measurement! A column for each value, side by side, is best.

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Using Section numbering WITHOUT adding a descriptive heading alongside it. Not providing page numbers. (but the Cover Sheet doesn’t need one). Not giving tables and figures descriptive titles using very brief phrases. Not giving an Appendix a title. (and not starting Appendices on a new page). Incorrectly using referencing. e.g. providing a list of references, but not actually referring to them in the text. No-one will read references or (appendices) unless you point to them.

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