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What Is This Kind of Paper, Anyway?

03 May 2018

Many students and people, in general, are given the assignment to prepare a report. However, many have trouble understanding it. In fact, it is possible to assume that most people who are given this task have no idea what it is. Furthermore, they do not understand the difference between an essay and this kind of assignment. In this article, you will find out what exactly it is, how to write it, what variations of it exist, the structure, tips and much more.

So what is it in essence? To put it short, it is a paper that outlines, examines and describes a particular subject or issue. It objectively informs the readers of facts. Unlike an essay which usually presents a specific thesis or a personal opinion, it simply outlines facts. There exist many different format and template variations of it. We will review the formats of a scientific and business report.

Scientific and Business Formats

The scientific format is used in the academic world, usually for presenting results of studies. It must contain a few important sections. These are the introduction, the methods section, the results section, the discussion and the conclusion. The business format is the following: a summary, introduction, methods, findings, conclusion, recommendations, bibliography, appendices.

It is crucial to precisely follow the required structure for any type, and these two are no exceptions. Failing to follow the structure may result in yours being rejected. So make sure that your report always follows the recommended structure.

How to Create a Brilliant Introduction

Some students assume that the introduction is of little importance. They are very mistaken. The success in most cases largely depends on the effective introduction. But how do you make it an effective one? To answer this question, one needs to asses the purpose of the introduction. The purpose of this paragraph is to catch the reader’s attention, motivate him or her to keep reading and provide an understanding of the whole document.

So, it is important to explain what this document is about and why it is important for the reader to keep reading. Even though reports do not deal with personal opinion, they nevertheless must include some key idea. This key idea has to be introduced in the introduction.

How to Write a Research Report

The structure of a research report follows the typical scientific format. One shall begin with the introduction where the purpose, the hypothesis, and findings are presented. Once again, the author should strive to successfully interest the reader to read the whole document by placing by creating a hooking introduction.

Next follows the methodology paragraph where one is supposed to outline and describe the methodology used for the conducted research. Then the results are presented in a separate paragraph. Afterward comes the discussion section, where the findings are discussed. They are compared to the initial assumptions.

Finally, the conclusion paragraph comes into play where the corresponding conclusions are drawn, and the entire research is summarized. However, this is not the end. In many cases, a recommendations section is added after the conclusion along with references, bibliography, and appendices.

How to Write a Practical Report

A practical report is quite similar to the research one. There follows the same structure. It includes the introduction first. Then there goes the materials and methods section, followed by results. Then comes the discussion, followed by the conclusion. In the end, references and appendix should be added.


Here is an example of an introduction to a report on social media and its influence on workplace productivity:

“Social media has a huge impact on many spheres of our lives. The professional and business spheres are no exceptions. The recent popularity of social networks makes many employers and businesses question its effect on productivity. The purpose of this report was to research the relation between the two.

The conducted research found that social media availability negatively impacts an employee’s productivity. It decreases focus and creates distractions. As a result, many employees tend to get constantly distracted by social media during work hours.”


It is imperative for anyone who aspires to be successful in studies, business or professional career to learn how to craft an effective report. It differs from an essay, and it is vital to understand that difference. It is of equal importance to know its correct structure and be able to follow it.

During your studies, you may be assigned to create a research report. When you graduate, you may find yourself obliged to create a business report for your boss. So you never know when the ability to create great reports may come in handy for you. If you take your time and follow the tips given in this article, you will find it easy to create a brilliant report of yours.

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