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Report Writing

Explore differences between report and essay, and writing styles for different audiences.

Adrienne Noonan

on 13 November 2012

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Transcript of Report Writing

REPORT WRITING report vs. essay why write a report? inform
record report v essay why are you writing it? getting started who are you writing for? influnce your audience: tone
evidence helpful books! tone / structure / content Report writing is persuasive writing.
Your personality and perspective may come more into play with a report than an academic paper... Know your audience
Outlook/attitude once you know your audience, then write for that audience! YES! industry-standard vernacular;short sentences
NO...jargon, 'office-speak', or rambling... http://plainenglish.org/ structure "METHOD" planning before you start writing... write / illustrate / *edit* / revise proofread & polish organise
organise ...and you're done! Plan BEFORE You Begin Mind-mapping
Tidy loose ends
Have a plan
Organise material
Deliver report write down everything that comes to mind on the subject review what you've written & prioritise statistics, illustrations, charts/graphics, photographs; referenced & captioned! beginning, middle & end. where will you put the supporting elements? research materials, primary sources, bibliographic references, finished draft... write your first draft double-spaced for easy editing.

read it out loud for flow. then give it to a friend...

and then revise at least twice... before you deliver the final report. All or some of the following:
- Title Page
- Contents
- [Executive] Summary/Introduction
- Main body containing evidence that you’ve collected
- Evaluation of the evidence & force of your argument
- Conclusions and recommendations
- Bibliography

*Terms of Reference
*Index Gets the message across and gives the reader a sense of what's to come Signposts what's to come and shows the logical conclusion.
Can be an outline,
or provide a basic framework of the report. Most of all a report needs to be easy to understand!
Who are you writing for? A paper might be for a lecturer, a report's audience could be a client, funder, or other interested colleagues and peers.

Who is your audience for this report?
Academics, peers, possibly industry.... Develop a personal style!
Create a relationship between reader and writer. tone clear, concise, natural contents title page & subtitle Unless it’s a very short report, summarise the main points.
2-3 paragraphs

Give readers an overview before begining to consider the detail

*Highlights for a busy reader [executive] summary plan
content .......................... ....................................................... start writing! content Who
How a concept in news style, research, and in police investigations
that are regarded as basics in information-gathering. - Wikipedia 5 Ws + H I keep six honest serving-men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who.
- Rudyard Kipling, 'Just So Stories' (1902) words
hierarchy construct a narrative HEADINGS Subheadings Body copy/text
Point size bullets
centred Words-in-tables [WIT] text boxes Use sparingly to highlight unmissable facts and analysis an interesting alternative to the bullet point...Jon Moon captions the fine print can pack a lot of information:
*date, place, size, relevance, people, cost*
but most of all, why is the image important... http://www.jmoon.co.uk/ ‘Start at the end/beginning’
What do you want to tell your readers?
What do you want them to remember? Revise draft(s)

Read it aloud
Have a friend read it

Reorganise write/edit The average English sentence is 15 words long; if more than two lines,then cut! smaller point size (10) + tighter margins / hierarchy = more white space + easier to read! tip persuasive resources http://learnhigher.ac.uk/Students/Report-writing.html

Brock, Susan L. (1992) Writing business proposals and reports [electronic resource] . Crisp Publications.

Forsyth, Patrick. (2003) How to Write Reports and Proposals (2nd Edition)

Gravett, Steve. (2003) The Right Way to Write Reports. Tadworth, Surrey: Elliott Right Way Books.

Moon, Jon. (2008) How to Make an Impact : Influence, Inform and Impress with Your Reports, Presentations and Business Documents. London, FT/Prentice Hall.


Cite and source all research materials, including your own findings. Footnotes, bibliography, etc.

For more on this, see UWE Library’s iSkill Zone
http://iskillzone.uwe.ac.uk/ referencing ...... http://learnhigher.ac.uk/Students/Report-writing.html
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