This chapter contains practices used by the U.S. Geological Survey to assure the quality of analytical data for water, fluvial sediment, and aquatic organisms. These practices are directed primarily toward personnel making water quality measurements. Some detail specific quality control techniques, others document quality assurance procedures being used by the Central Laboratories System of the U.S. Geological Survey, and still others describe various statistical techniques and give examples of their use in evaluating and assuring the quality of analytical data. The practices are arranged into eight sections: Analytical Methods Development Procedures, Standard Quantitative Analysis Techniques, Instrumental Techniques, Reference Material, Laboratory Quality Control; Quality Assurance Monitoring; Documentation, Summary, and Evaluation of Data, Materials Evaluation. Each section is preceded by a brief description of the material covered. Similarly within each section, each practice is preceded by a description of its application or scope.