I have very specific expectations for your homework assignment reports. These expectations and requirements are described below. A document that demonstrates several of these expectations is here (note the comments in “balloons”).

  1. Each document should be typed and printed (double-sided) to hand in as a hard-copy.
  2. Each document should be labeled with your name and homework title (e.g., “Module 10 Homework”). It is not important to include the name of the class or my name (I already know both of these).
  3. Each document should include the following statement along with your signature – “I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in completing this work, nor have I presented someone else’s work as my own.
  4. Your document should “look nice.” This means that you should include spaces that increase readability (e.g., between a paragraph and a table) but remove spaces that waste paper (e.g., there is no need to have five empty lines between a paragraph and a graphic). In addition, you should not use “non-standard” fonts – the most common of which is “comic sans.” Scientific presentations require a “serious” font which is likely one of “Times New Roman”, “Arial”, “Calibri”, or “Helvetica.” The one exception to this is the use of the “Courier” for results from R/RStudio (see below).
  5. You should use complete sentences whenever possible. This may result in very simple sentences – e.g., “The sample mean is 3.26 (Table 1).” – but should become your default.
  6. Generally, the document should be single-spaced (see this FAQ for making MSWord “single space” your document).
  7. You should provide evidence for each factual statement that you make. Most of the time this means that you will be referring to a particular figure or table. It is inappropriate to say “in the table below”, for example. Instead you should say “as seen in Table 1” or put “(Table 1)” at the end of a sentence. Tables and figures should then be properly labeled (see below).
  8. Tables and figures should be properly labeled. There are a wide variety of proper styles for labeling figures and tables. The most common styles label tables ON TOP of the table and figures BELOW the figure. The labels should use “Table” or “Figure” (note that “Graph” and “Chart” are unacceptable), should include a sequential number (the first of each table or figure is numbered “1” and each subsequent table or figure has an increased number), and a descriptive label. Descriptive labels are descriptive – i.e., “Table 1. Summary statistics of data.” is inadequate, “Table 1. Summary statistics of the length of ant antennae separated by sex.” is much better.
  9. R/RStudio output (usually as a table) should be converted to “Courier” or “Courier (New)” font. This is the font used by R/RStudio and, thus, will force the items in the table to “line up.” This will save you from having to include spaces or tabs to make items line up. See this FAQ on how to change the font. ONLY R/RStudio output should be in the “Courier” font. All other text should be in the fonts mentioned previously.
  10. Where appropriate, Greek letters should be changed to their symbol equivalent. In other words, it is better to use α than “alpha.” See this FAQ for how to include these symbols in your analysis.
  11. Every assignment that uses R/RStudio should include an appendix that lists the script of R/RStudio commands used to produce the analyses (i.e., the code from your RStudio script window). This script should contain only good commands (i.e., no errors) and should not include any commands that produce errors or were not used in your analysis. If I had the data for the assignment, I should be able to copy your appendix, paste it into R/RStudio, and have it run without any issues.
  12. See the grading portion of the syllabus for details about how homeworks will be graded.