• IV should always be in the first column
  • Labels should be descriptive
  • Units should always be in the headings of the table


  • IV should always be in the x-axis
  • Plotting needs to be accurate
  • Scaling needs to be correct
  • If the IV exhibits continous data you should draw a line graph, if it exhibits categoric data you should draw a bar chart
  • Unitsshould always be on the labels
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EMPA Tips 2


  • Results are repeated to ensure they are reliable and identify or minimise the effect of anomalies
  • Precise results are measured in a very small scale
  • An accurate result is the closest to the true value
  • A valid result is the one in which the confounding variables have been controled so that the only variable affecting the DV is the IV


  • First ask yourself if the data supports the conclusion, if it does use the axis or table labels to refer to the variables
  • Next ask yourself if the data contradicts the conclusion, to check for this check if the data talks about any control group; about sample size (larger sample gives you a more reliable mean since it reduces the effect of anomalies) and also check for the number of investigations done (increasing the number of investigations done reduces the effect of chance)
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EMPA Tips 3

Describing graphs

  • Give general trend: Changes in gradient (steep increase or decrease; gradual increase or decrease; leveling off etc.)
  • Changes in correlation: positive or negative correlation
  • Give data: Where on the x-axis does this change?/ Read accurately
  • More than one data set: Use comparative words (steeper, lower, higher, etc.)
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