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Lab Report – Introduction to Pulmonary Ventilation

Lab Report – Introduction to Pulmonary Ventilation

In science, reporting what has been done in a laboratory setting is incredibly important for communicating, replicating, and validating findings. However, writing scientific reports can be a little overwhelming. There is a set of agreed-upon components that the scientific community requires when reporting scientific research. Answer the following questions to describe what occurred during the lab you conducted in Labster. Be sure to use complete sentences and descriptions that fully represent what you experienced. Writing a lab report is less about being correct or incorrect, than it is accurately reporting what happened and why. So, do not worry about reporting data that might seem counterintuitive or unexpected. Focus on clearly communicating what you did and what you observed.

Enter your responses on a new line.


What was the title of the lab you completed?

Pulmonary Function Testing Using a Spirometer


What was the subject you were trying to understand better in the lab?

Understanding the pulmonary function and its measurement using a spirometer.

Background Information

What information from the textbook and classroom is relevant to the subject about which you were trying to gain a better understanding in the lab? Identify the concepts and explain how they are related to the lab topic.

The structure and function of the respiratory system: This includes understanding the anatomy of the lungs, bronchi, bronchioles, and alveoli, as well as their role in gas exchange during respiration.

Mechanics of breathing: Understanding how the diaphragm and other respiratory muscles contract and relax to create changes in lung volume and pressure during inhalation and exhalation.

Lung volumes and capacities: Learning about different lung volumes (tidal volume, inspiratory reserve volume, expiratory reserve volume, residual volume) and how they combine to form lung capacities (vital capacity, total lung capacity).

During the lab, what information from the Theory section provided additional background information about the subject? (To review the theory section, launch the lab and click the “Theory” tab at the top of the data pad). Identify the concepts and explain how they are related to the lab topic.

Boyle’s Law: Explains the inverse relationship between the pressure and volume of a gas at a constant temperature. This concept is relevant to understanding the changes in lung volume and intrapulmonary pressure during respiration.

Spirometry: Introduces the concept of spirometry as a method to measure lung function. It explains the different spirometric measurements (tidal volume, inspiratory/expiratory reserve volume, forced vital capacity, forced expiratory volume) and their significance in assessing pulmonary function.

Most scientific observation involves examining phenomena or processes. What phenomenon or process were you observing in the lab? What were you able to change and explore? What did the simulation not allow to change?

During the lab, the phenomenon or process observed was the measurement of pulmonary function using a spirometer. I was able to change and explore various parameters related to lung volumes and capacities, such as altering tidal volume, inspiratory/expiratory reserve volume, and measuring forced vital capacity and forced expiratory volume. In this simulation, I was unable to explore certain clinical conditions or specific respiratory impairments that can affect pulmonary function.


Describing what you did during a lab helps other scientists to replicate your work. It is through this consistent replication that scientists are able to see repeating patterns and develop ideas that help move science forward. When you discuss your observations, in a later section, you will have to describe, in detail, what you did. You may also have to describe what choices you made, why you made them, and any concerns about things that occurred that were unexpected. In order to have enough information to do this, you need to keep very detailed notes. What doesn’t seem important in the moment may end up being something that explains your findings later. A benefit of conducting virtual labs when learning science is that many potential errors are controlled for you. The virtual lab environment often will alert you if something is not going the way it should. This does not occur in non-virtual settings. For this reason, the virtual lab setting can be very helpful to learners. However, we still have to practice documenting so that those skills can be practised for lab experiences when technology is not there as a coach.

In the previous section, you have already described the phenomenon or process that you studied in the lab. Now, take some time to fully describe the steps you took during the lab. Do not include the process of logging into the lab in your description. For this virtual lab, a short, high-level summary will suffice.

I followed the steps outlined in the simulation to measure pulmonary function using a spirometer.

Next, I selected different scenarios to simulate normal breathing, asthma, and pregnancy.

I then adjusted the parameters such as tidal volume, respiratory rate, and lung volume to observe their effects on pulmonary function.

Describe some of the observations you made. What did you write down or keep track of? What did each of your senses observe during the lab process? What did you see (ex: changes in colors, movement, shapes, sizes, patterns)? What, if anything, did you measure? What did you hear (ex: sounds from reactions, collisions, error messages)? What did your lab character touch? Did you notice anything that seemed unexpected? Did you notice anything that you did not expect to observe?

I measured parameters such as tidal volume, inspiratory reserve volume, expiratory reserve volume, and vital capacity.

I observed changes in lung volumes and respiratory rates in different scenarios.

I also noticed differences in pulmonary function between normal individuals and those with asthma or during pregnancy.

The simulation provided visual representations of lung volumes and flow rates, allowing me to observe changes in real-time.


Which parts of the lab required you to think more than others and required more time? Which parts were simple and completed easily?

Understanding the concepts and theory behind pulmonary function testing required more thought and time.

Interpreting the data from the spirometer and relating it to the simulated physiological conditions also required careful analysis.

Adjusting the parameters to simulate different scenarios and observing the resulting changes in pulmonary function took some time as well.


Many lessons learned from scientific research come from the reporting and analysis of data and observations. This part of scientific reporting requires detailed descriptions of technical information and observations as well as a high-level synthesis of information. High-level synthesis requires a mastery of foundational content in the related scientific field and a complimentary mastery in some fields of quantitative and/or qualitative analysis. For this report, let’s focus on big-picture patterns.

What did you notice about the phenomenon or process you explored?

The phenomenon of measuring pulmonary function using a spirometer allowed me to understand how different physiological conditions and parameters can affect breathing patterns and lung volumes. I observed that individuals with asthma had reduced expiratory reserve volume and increased resistance in the airways. During pregnancy, the position of the diaphragm was altered, affecting lung volumes. I also noticed that changes in respiratory rate and tidal volume influenced overall pulmonary function.

Describe any information about the phenomenon or process that you learned.

I learned about the importance of lung volumes and flow rates in assessing respiratory health. I further understood how conditions like asthma and pregnancy can impact breathing patterns and lung function. Finally, I learned how to interpret data obtained from a spirometer and relate it to physiological conditions.


The discussion section is used to explain why things might have happened the way that they did in your research. Here, scientists describe any potential anomalies or mistakes and why they think they may have occurred.

During your lab, what happened that might have impacted the accuracy of your observations? Did the simulation alert you that an error was occurring? If so, how did you resolve it?

The simulation ensured that errors or inaccuracies were minimized, and notified me of any errors that occurred during the lab. It also provided a controlled environment for conducting experiments and collecting data.

The discussion section also is used to summarize big ideas from the lab. What were the important learnings about the phenomenon or process from the lab?

The lab helpful in understanding the significance of measuring pulmonary function and how it can provide insights into respiratory health. I learned about the effects of different physiological conditions on lung volumes and flow rates. I also gained knowledge about the parameters and measurements involved in pulmonary function testing.


The conclusion section of a lab report describes how the learnings from the lab research fit into prior scientific knowledge. This is done by comparing new information to previously known information that was identified in the section of your report that discusses background information.

Review the background information section of your report from above and describe how the results of your lab compare to the information that you discussed before.

The results of the lab align with the background information discussed earlier. The lab reinforced the concepts of pulmonary ventilation, Boyle’s Law, and the mechanics of breathing. It provided practical application of these concepts, and I was to observe the effects of different physiological conditions on pulmonary function.

Once scientists have identified how the new knowledge fits into the old knowledge, they discuss the implications of the new information for moving forward. In this class, the purpose of the study is to learn some foundational science ideas represented by the course student learning outcomes. Review the course student learning outcome aligned with this lab in the assignment directions on Blackboard. How is the information from this lab related to the course student learning outcome? What knowledge has the lab supported you with learning that is related to this course’s student learning outcome?

The information from this lab is related to the course student learning outcome of understanding the respiratory system’s functioning and the factors that can impact it. The lab supported my learning by providing hands-on experience with measuring pulmonary function and observing the effects of different conditions on respiratory health.

Following scientific research, scientists usually come up with new questions that result from what they learned. These new questions often end up leading to new research in the future. What additional scientific things do you wonder about after completing and writing about your lab experience?

How does chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) affect pulmonary function and respiratory health compared to other respiratory conditions?

What is the impact of environmental factors, particularly air pollution, on pulmonary function and respiratory health?

Is there a correlation between pulmonary function and overall cardiovascular fitness, and if so, what is the nature of this relationship?

Can improvements in cardiovascular fitness lead to improvements in respiratory function in individuals with breathing impairments?


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The ability to breathe is a matter of life and death! This lab allows you to investigate the different stages of pulmonary ventilation and calculate the amount of air our lungs manage with every breath.

Lab Report – Introduction to Pulmonary Ventilation

Lab Report – Introduction to Pulmonary Ventilation

You will also investigate the ways things like asthma or pregnancy can affect the way our respiratory system performs.
The final step for this assessment is to complete the lab report. As you work through the lab, compile the pieces of your report. To make the experience more interesting, complete the Hypothesis section prior to diving into the lab.
When you are satisfied with your work in the lab, please complete and submit your lab report.

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