Final Project Writeup
Due: Sunday, Dec. 20, 11:59pm on Moodle
Below is a general format and some guidelines to keep in mind for your final project writeup. The goal of this assignment is to gain experience with planning and executing an open-ended project, including written communication of your process and results.
Introduce your topic and place it in a larger context. For example, the larger context could be dog genetics and the evolution of different dog breeds, and you will zoom in on a comparison between labradors and poodles . Provide some scientific motivation for your topic and discuss the "big-picture" goal of your research direction. Then provide an overview of previous work. (Note: you do not need an abstract unless you would like to include one.)
Discuss all the methods and datasets you are using or creating. If you are using existing software or methods, provide an overview of how they work in your own words. Discuss any data formats you are using and provide examples. For any code you wrote, explain the details and be clear about the input and output (even for relatively straightforward data conversions). Include your commandlines and details of how you ran existing programs (these can be in an appendix). Throughout the methods, keep in mind the scientific standard of replication - someone else following your writeup should be able to exactly reproduce your results.
Include all your results and an interpretation of what they mean (ideally in terms of what they mean for biology). It can be especially helpful to include negative results. For example, if you experimented with different cutoffs or thresholds, it might be interesting to include some that didn't produce very illuminating results. Sometimes good results are best understood in terms of results that were not as successful.
There are always things that would be interesting to pursue given more time. Include some ideas for how your project could be continued, or things you might have done differently. Try to keep the tone scientific, but also candid.
Include all references (research papers, links to software and data, etc). From your text and references, someone else should be able to exactly replicate your results.
Denote one figure or table you'd like to share with the class. For all figures and tables, include captions that clearly explain the axes, legend, etc, so that the figure can stand on its own.
I would expect the length of the writeup to be around 4-5 pages, depending on how many figures/references you have. Try to be thorough but avoid filler text. Please include any code you wrote as separate attachments.