Chemistry work-term report requirements and instructions
All students in the Honours Chemistry Co-op program and the Honours Biochemistry Co-op program are required to provide a bound hard copy of their work-term report to Julie Shikaze (C2 280) and submit an electronic version of their work report to the Turnitin Work Report Dropbox on LEARN on the 10th day of lectures in the study term that follows their co-op term. Instructions on how to use the Dropbox are posted under the “Content” section of LEARN.
If students want to opt out of the Turnitin submission, they will need to contact Julie Shikaze. In this case, they will have to submit an electronic copy of the work term report as well as a printed copy of all of the references used in the report. The references from manuscripts, notebooks, journals, websites etc. must have all of the text highlighted that was used to construct their work term report.
All Chemistry work-term reports must be addressed to the chair of the Chemistry Department. If students have questions about topic selection for their work-term report, please contact Dr. Graham Murphy.
If students are doing a double co-op term, the work-term report(s) are due on the 10th day of lectures in their first study term following the second work term.
Extensions for late submission, with reasons, must be approved by Dr. Stefan Idziak, Professor and Associate Dean for Co-operative Education.
The following points should also be considered:
How will Chemistry work-term reports be graded?
All work-term reports submitted by Chemistry students will be evaluated using the Chemistry Work Term Report Rubric. Chemistry students must follow the specific formatting requirements as outlined in the Chemistry Work Term Report Rubric and on this page. The Faculty of Science Work Report Guidelines may also be consulted for general information only.
Any report that receives two or more “unsatisfactory” grades in one category of the rubric must be re-submitted within three weeks from the day the resubmission email notice is sent. Failure to resubmit a satisfactory report within this period will result in loss of the work-term report credit for that term.
For this reason students are strongly advised to consult this rubric as they prepare their reports and before they submit them. Students who submit reports with numerous grammatical errors will be required to take supplementary instruction (e.g. attend Writing Centre workshops or take an English writing course).
What should be stated in the letter of submittal?
The letter of submittal must include: 1) a statement that you have read and understood the work report guidelines completely before preparing your report; 2) a statement declaring that you have checked the report for spelling and grammar errors to the best of your ability; 3) a statement to explain whether the report describes your co-op work project or is a report on an alternate topic for which permission was obtained from your co-op coordinator, and 4) your signature. The Faculty of Science work-term report format guidelines include an example letter of submittal.
Figure legends and table headers
Each figure must have an associated figure number and caption positioned below the figure that provides an informative description of the figure content. In some cases it will be necessary to provide a short description in addition to the figure caption so that the figure is interpretable without consultation of the main text (see example below). An informative caption consists of a short descriptive figure title, as well as a description of what is shown in the figure, and what key point(s) it is meant to convey.
Similarly, each table must have an associated table number and header positioned immediately above the table. This header should be a succinct but informative description of the content of the table that is interpretable without consultation of the main text (see example of table formatting). Abbreviations, notations or other descriptions necessary to interpret the table should be indicated within the table by superscript notations and the corresponding descriptions positioned as footnotes below the table.
Referencing, copyright rules and plagiarism issues
Any image or figure taken from another source, such as from a journal publication or a web site, must be associated with the citation details. This information must be included in the legend accompanying the figure. The legend should be sufficiently detailed to allow the reader to understand the information in the figure without consulting the text; this legend should not be copied from the original source. Because these figures are usually copyrighted, students are expected to modify it in some way and note this in their legend (note see above example). The modification may be relatively minor such as changing some of the labels.
Students should consult the library web site for copyright rules if they are in doubt about material that can be used in their report. It is the student’s responsibility to follow these rules appropriately. Any plagiarism will result in a failed grade for the report and an academic discipline decision. Students may also consult the University academic integrity website for suggestions for how to cite other sources as well as details on university academic policies.
How and when should abbreviations be used in a work-term report?
Terms used more than three times in the text should be abbreviated; use of abbreviations in the abstract should be avoided as much as possible. All abbreviations must be written out the first time they are used in the abstract or text. If you use abbreviations in your report you must include a list of abbreviations.
What you should do if the report is confidential
The process is that the student contacts the current Associate Dean of Coop in Science to make arrangements for a submission of a confidential report. The Associate Dean of Coop for the Faculty of Science (Stefan Idziak) can sign a non-disclosure agreement with the employer and then mark the report. No one else will see the report, which will be shredded immediately after being marked. Once the report has been marked, CECA is made aware of the mark and updates JobMine appropriately (see information regarding confidential work term reports).
Occasionally, the Science Faculty will allow the employer to mark confidential work reports if a business case can be made to justify the request. The downside for the student is that they cannot be nominated for the work term report award, as there is no way for us to compare their work to that of others. If this is the only option available, the student and their supervisor should prepare a brief note explaining why an exception should be made. The Associate Dean of Coop will then decide if the student may write an employer-graded work term report. If the above arrangement is approved, a confidential work report evaluation form will be sent to the student’s employer by their Student Advisor.
Students are advised to discuss the options with their employer and then contact the Associate Dean of Coop and let them know how they would like to proceed. Please note that not all requests for employer-marked reports are approved.
There should be no need for the students to write up any additional report such as a review paper.
Can a review paper be written as a work-term report?
No, not normally. However, some special cases may be considered, which must be approved by Dr. Graham Murphy, Chemistry and Biochemistry co-op work-term coordinator, ahead of time. It is important to clearly state that permission has been granted to write a review paper as your report, in your letter of submittal. All review papers must have analytical components/comments.
How important is to have analytical components and comments in a work-term report?
Analytical components and/or comments are essential for making rationale and proper conclusions and recommendations. Lack of these parts will result in a failed or “resubmit” grade on the work term report.
What types of references should I use?
The student should use peer-reviewed sources (e.g. peer-reviewed journal articles or books) as their primary source of information. Students are to remember to use their own words (paraphrase) and cite the source after mentioning the work, and include the reference in the reference section at the end of their report. Do not use the web as a source of information (other than by accessing peer-reviewed electronic journal articles). The citation style should follow the APA guidelines. If students are unsure of how to paraphrase, please contact the Writing Centre for either a drop-in session or a workshop.
Release of Co-op work-term report grades
Work-term report comments will be kept for the evaluation of subsequent reports. Evidence of improvement will be required to gain a passing grade in the later reports.