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HOW TO WRITE A GOOD REPORT

Introduction

Introductory paragraph

The introduction should explain the general ideas to come, as well as your thesis statement, which tells the reader what to expect from the rest of the report. The rest of the report should gather evidence and organize a case around your thesis statement. 1. Topic sentences A topic sentence is like a mini introduction to the body of your paragraph. Your topic sentence should explain what the body of the paragraph will cover, (just like your introduction explains what to expect in the report). It is a good idea to map out your report, by first writing topic sentences for each of the different paragraphs or sections of your report.

2. Body Support sentences Support sentences are the body of paragraphs. This is the section of your report that serves to provide evidence and examples that reinforce your thesis statement. Support sentences are also used to clearly explain and underpin main ideas. 3. Conclusion Concluding sentences The concluding sentence is used to reiterate the main points developed by the support sentences, and signal the end of a paragraph. They are also useful for adding emphasis to certain key points, through repetition. We will now look at how to create the different parts of a report outside of the general writing, which are: Title, Summary, Recommendations, Appendix, References, and Table of Contents. Title The title is your first contact with the reader, and should inform them succinctly about what they are about to read.

Summary The purpose of a summary is to provide an overview of the report. It is not necessary to give detailed information in the summary, but rather to provide an indication of the type of information that the report contains. Average summaries are between 100-150 words, and are generally written after the report has been completed, so that you know exactly what you are summarizing.

Recommendations Recommendations are not an essential part of a report; however, if you are including one, it should follow from your conclusion. A brief statement clearly declaring your recommendations will suffice.

Appendix An appendix contains materials that are peripheral, but relevant to your report. For example you may wish to include a glossary of terms in your appendix if you are writing a technical report for those who are not experts on the subject. You may also include copies of research tools such as questionnaires and manuals, as well as tables and diagrams that you feel would disrupt the flow of your report by breaking it up. If your appendix does contain tables, diagrams etc., make sure to label them properly, so that the can easily be found when referenced.

References If you have consulted or quoted any media sources, (print or otherwise) to help you compile your report, they must be acknowledged here, as well as in the text. Citing your resources not only avoids running into plagiarism issues, but strengthens your work by backing up your report with evidence from the work of others. If you are quoting directly from someone else, the quote must be followed by the authors surname and date of publication in round brackets, e.g. Calvino (1983). A standard bibliography is an alphabetized list ordered by Authors surnames. For a book you must include: the authors surname and full name, or initials; the full title of the book; the edition (if other than the first); the place of publication; the publisher, and the date of publication, e.g. Calvino, Italo. Palomar. Torino: S.P.A., 1983.