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How to Write Reports

Writing reports 101.

M Mancera

on 28 November 2012

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Transcript of How to Write Reports

http://www.ssdd.bcu.ac.uk/learner/writingguides/1.02%20Reports.htm# How to Write a Report. It's a systematic, well-organised document which defines and analyses a subject or problem. What is a REPORT? a RECORD of a sequence of events
an INTERPRETATION of the significance of these events or facts
an EVALUATION of the facts or results of research presented
a DISCUSSION of the outcomes of a decision or course of action
RECOMMENDATIONS REPORTS may include: accurate
well-structured REPORTS must always be: Analyse your brief Understand the topic/question/case
Know the purpose of the report
Know who it is for Make sure you... While you're researching/writing,, always ask yourself... REPORT What's the main PURPOSE of my REPORT? What does the READER want to SEE in my REPORT? What will he DO with it? What's the OBJECTIVE of my REPORT?
Inform? Argue? Persuade? Evaluate? Planning & Research

with main topic/question in mind, jot down initial thoughts & group them together
Divide key ideas from subsidiary info
Continuously ask yourself "Is this relevant?" If it isn't, delete it! What do you need to find out? Plan your research: Preliminary outline Put together a fairly basic structure: Initial Preparation Gather info Remember to keep a detailed record of any sources consulted in order to reference them correctly. SECTIONS of a REPORT Title
Your name
Name of Tutor
Course Title page List of people & organisations who have helped you Acknowledgements NO fancy fonts
NO clipart LONG reports only List of sections & subsections
Remember to put page numbers
Tables, figures, illustrations and/or appendices in separate list AFTER main index Contents Page Make it at the end HEADINGS must MATCH those in MAIN BODY Headings & subheadings to indicate sections
CRITICAL Approach (Don't only describe, analyse) Main body No opinions, conclusions nor recommendations here Records of your observations (statistics, tables, graphs) Results In PAST tense Draw out implications of your findings
Deductions based on facts described in main body Conclusion No new material here Should follow logically from conclusion
Specific, measurable & achievable
How could situation improve by action to be taken? Recommendations Include "statement of cost" if your recommendations have financial implications Detailed documentation
Supplementary info (too long/complicated, not too relevant to be in main body)
Each appendix should be referred to in text Appendices If it's not in the main body, don't include it List giving full details of ALL sources mentioned in text References Bibliography=separate list of sources used but not referenced to in text Clear concise
No jargon nor colloquial language
Fairly short paragraphs
Be extra careful with verb tenses Style Develop each paragraph sufficiently
(minimum 5 or 6 sentences) General layout
Text organisation
Grammar, spelling & punctuation
Style Before you print, check ... Does the report fulfil its purpose?
Does it do what you're being asked to do?
Does it do what you say you're going to do in your Introduction?
Are you pleased with your text? Finally... Then you may need to do some major editing and rewriting. Did you answer "No" to ANY of those questions?
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