Conclusions and Evaluations
When all has been done, and your data is reliable and accurate, it is time to tell the story of what you found out. This is your conclusion and involves commenting on the relationship between independent and dependent variable. Your conclusion is in 2 two parts.
1. Abstract statement:
This is a general statement that summarises what you found out.
2. The evidence
In this statement, you have to link your dependent and independent variable. Typically you are defending the generalisation you made in your first statement. This is because as ...., the ..., .... It is usual to use the ...er words or any other comparative word.
If there is a link between the independent variable and dependent variable it could be:
- Causal link – that changing the independent variable directly changes the dependent variable for example as the .....increases, the ...... or the higher the ....., the lower the......
- Due to association – that changing the independent variable affects another variable which results in changes to the dependent variable
- Due to chance – that changing the independent variable coincidentally changes the dependent variable
You must be able to:
- Comment on the trend or lack of trend shown by the graph.
- Analyse your own results and draw a conclusion
- Describe relationship between dependent and independent variables – or the lack of it.
- Explain relationship between dependent and independent variables – or lack of it.
- Compare your results to the hypothesis
- Make an evaluation of the strength and limitation of your method
- Analyse and evaluate secondary data and how it matches with your results
- Relate the results to the context of the ISA
- Explain why further evidence may be needed to draw a firm conclusion and how this extra evidence may be obtained.
The following questions can be used as a guideline to check whether your generalisations are accurate.
- Does the result support the findings?
- Does the generalised conclusion prove or disprove your hypothesis?
- Have you stated the relationship between the independent and dependent variable?
- Can you evaluate and comment on the usefulness your experimental procedure or lack of?
- What are the possibilities for further study?
- What modifications/changes can be done to the experimental procedure?
EVALUATION – Data is reliable if the experiment is repeated and the same data obtained and answers the original question.
Reliable data can be produced if:
- All other variables are kept constant except the independent variable
- Measurements are repeated and averages calculated
- Anomalous results are identified and are left out average calculations
- Equipment has been calibrated and is precise