Writing a Report

Report Structure

A good structure for a report would be as follows:

  • Title Page - showing the title of the report, the author, the person for whom the report is prepared, and the date of completion
  • Summary/Synopsis/Executive Summary (approx 10% of word count) - this will identify:
    • The purpose of the report
    • The scope of the report – issues covered/not covered
    • The important results and findings
    • The conclusions and recommendations
    • Acknowledgement of any assistance in researching and compiling the report
  • Table of contents - not including the title and contents page!
  • Body of report – this will include:
    • Introduction – what is the report about
    • Discussion – divided into sections and sub sections, presented clearly and confined to fact rather than analysis/opinion
  • Conclusion – this should:
    • Relate back to the findings in the body of the report
    • Include a clear summary of the main points
    • Outline the findings of the research

There should be nothing in the conclusion that has not already been mentioned in the body of the report.

  • Recommendations – these should:
    • Emerge from the conclusions
    • Suggest what is to be done, who is to do it and how/when it is to be done
    • Be justified based on findings, not just the opinion of the writer
  • Bibliography
  • Appendix/Appendices - containing supplementary material too detailed for the main body of the report, such as tables, charts, statistics, questionnaires etc

(Adapted from Source: NCI Learning Centre: Study Skills/Writing Skills/Writing Reports)

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