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Research Report

October 8, 2012

Introduction to Research Report

Research report is the process of communicating the results of an investigation. It is a document which reflects about the research conducted and the care that has been taken throughout the study.

According to Lancaster, “A report is a statement of collected and considered facts, so drawn-up as to give clear and concise information to persons who are not already in possession of the full facts of the subject matter of the report”.

Characteristics of Research Report:

Accuracy:  The information provided in reports should be accurate.

Simplicity: A report should be simple. This helps in deriving quick decisions.

Completeness: The report should be complete in all aspects. There should be no space for ambiguity.

Brevity: The investigator will not find sufficient time to read lengthy reports. Therefore the reports should be briefly explain the vital points.

Appearance: The arrangement, organization, format,layout and make-up of a report should be pleasing and eye-catching.

Readability: Reports must be easy to read. They must avoid technical language. The writer must present the facts through elegant and grammatically correct English.

Reliability: Reports should be reliable, and should not create an erroneous impression in the minds of readers either due to oversight or neglect.

Economy: Report writing should not be expensive. The most economical methods and standard quality must be employed, while conveying the information.

Timelines: To be useful and purposive, reports should reach the readers in time. Any delay in submission of reports makes the preparation of reports a futile exercise.

Importance of Report Research:

  • Provide Information
  • Source of concise and organized data
  • Logical presentation
  • Reflects Final Research
  • Tool of Evaluating Researcher
  • Bibliographical Evidence

Types of Research Reports:

  1. Technical Report
  2. Popular Report
  3. Interim Report
  4. Summary Report
  5. Algorithmic Research Report

Technical Report: In the technical report the main emphasis is on (i) the methods employed, (ii) assumptions made in the course of the study, (iii) the detailed presentation of the findings including their limitations and supporting data.

Popular Report: The popular report is one which gives emphasis on simplicity and attractiveness. The simplification should be sought through clear writing, minimization of technical, particular mathematical, details and liberal use of charts and diagrams.

Interim Report: When there is a long time lag between data collection and the presentation of the results in the case of a sponsored project, the study may lose its significance and usefulness and the sponsor may also lose interest in it. One of the most effective ways to avoid such eventualities is to present an interim report.

Summary Report: A summary report is generally prepared for the consumption of the lay audience. The preparation of this type of report is desirable for any study whose findings are of general interest. It is written in non-technical, simple language with a liberal use of pictorial charts.It just contains a brief reference to the objective of the study, its major findings and their implications.

Algorithmic Research Report: There are problems, viz., production scheduling. JIT, supply chain management, line balancing, layout design, portfolio management, etc., exist in reality. The solution for each of the above problems can be obtained through algorithms. So, the researchers should come out with newer algorithms or improved algorithms for such problems.

Research Report Preparation

After deciding the type of report, now the report writer should be concern with its preparation. This can be done when the writer is clear about what aspects, he is going to prepare the report.Let us see the format of research report.

Research Report Format: A research can be written in many ways, but the given three are generally followed:

Logical Pattern: Report may use a logical pattern, which implies that the findings are presented in inductive order.

Psychological Pattern:Report may follow a psychological pattern which is almost inverse of the preceding pattern.

Chronological Format: Report may use a chronological format wherein information is given along the time dimension. 

Principles of Report Writing

  • Easy to follow
  • Adhere to the Study Objectives
  • Be Selective
  • Be Objective
  • Have a Purposeful Organization
  • Write Clearly

Structure of Research Report

  • Title page
  • Table of contents
  • Foreword
  • Statement of Objectives
  • Methodology
  1. Research design
  2. Data Collection Methods
  3. Sampling
  4. Fieldwork
  5. Analysis and Interpretation
  • Limitations
  • Findings
  • Conclusions and Recommendations
  • Annexure
  • Bibliography and References

Steps of Report Writing

  1. Investigating the Sources of Information
  2. Taking notes
  3. Analyzing the data
  4. Making an Outline
  5. Writing a Report

Report Presentation

A presentation is a commitment by the presenter to help the audience to do something to solve a problem. The important thing is that in the presentation occurrence of commitment by the presenter and judgement by the audience is simultaneous.

Characteristics Of a Presentation

  • Proper sequencing
  • Facts and Figures
  • Colors
  • Rapport
  • Fillers
  • Feedback

Stages of Presentation

1) Planning Presentation

  • Identifying the Topic
  • Determining the Purpose
  • Analyze Your Audience

2) Delivering Presentation

  • Memorizing Method
  • Reading Method
  • Outlining Method
  • Speaking Imprompt

3) Developing and Displaying Visual Aids

Media For Presentation

  • Handouts
  • Tables
  • Graphs
  • chalkboard and Whiteboards
  • Flip Charts
  • Slides
  • Computers
  • Videotapes, Audiotapes,Filmstrips and Films
  • Overhead Projector (OHO)
  • 35mm Slider
  • LCD Projectors
  • Models and Physical Objects

4) Handling Questions from the Audience

  • Tips For Presentation
  • Decide your Goal and Topic of Presentation
  • Analyze the Audience
  • Decide the form of Presentation
  • Identify the Audio-Visual Aid Required
  • Know the Venue and the Equipment
  • Rehearse the Presentation
  • Effective Body Language
  • Preparation of Handouts and Assessment Form
  • Be a good Active Listener
  • Do not Read from Notes
  • Maintain Eye Contact
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