A codebook acts as a place to store and organize information related to your research and data and make take a variety of forms such as .pdf, html, or xml. If creating an xml mark-up codebook, consider following the Data Document Initiative (DDI) standards. If you have data in SPSS, SAS, or STATA formats, there are tools available through the software to assist in creating DDI codebook metadata.
You may want to track the following information and include it in your codebook:
Examples of codebooks in an original format and in DDI xml markup are available here .
Laboratory notebooks are the places where researchers document the experimental process. They are organizational tools and memory aids and can even assist in protecting institutional property rights. Lab notebooks may be electronic; however, paper is still the preferred method in many labs.
While the format and construction of the laboratory notebook may determined by an institution, department, instruction or researcher, the following are the basic elements of experimental entries:
Ethics are an important part of the scientific process
For more information on lab notebooks see Keeping a Lab Notebook by the National Institutes of Health, Office of Intramural Education and Training.