A research report is essentially a set of recorded data directly from the field or from secondary sources whose aim is to analyse a specific situation or topic. The information gathered in this case may be in the form of surveys or qualitative/quantitative methods. The information to be analysed is in raw format, hence the need to develop a report synthesizing the topic with the intention of achieving specific results. It is notable that research-based reports are vast and cut across different areas and subjects. The bottom line is that there are common elements that manifest in research-based reports, hence the need to understand how to write one. This guide takes you through a step-by-step procedure on how a good report can be done:
The Executive Summary
This section comes as the first in a research report. An executive summary gives an overview of the report. In other words, the executive summary covers the elements of the research reports to prepare the readers on what they should expect as they read along. It is important to ensure that you make the executive summary as interesting as possible in order to hook the readers. Most importantly, the executive summary should be a sneak-peak of the entire report; hence, it should not be lengthy. One or two short paragraphs should be enough for the summary section.
One of the notable aspects is while gathering data, a researcher has some goals that he/she intends to achieve. It is in the introduction that the author should focus on answers related to the set goals. In this regard, it is important to develop special focus on the question ‘what is the current status of the goal?’ and ‘what is intended to make positive achievements of the same goals?’ It is also important to tackle the question on whether the conducted research was able to unearth the necessary information, as well as whether the intended goals were effectively achieved or not. Such relevant information is what you should focus on when writing research introduction.
Research methodology is essentially the most important element of a research paper. In this case, you should aim at clearly spelling out the methods or approaches that you applied in achieving your results. In essence, you should have adequately defined parameters that adopted as far as searching for raw data is concerned. The idea here is to be detail-oriented such that the reader will have a clear understanding of the applied data gathering and analysis strategies. Information in this section should be expressed in a chronological order based on priorities and importance. It might be necessary to include the necessary references, especially where secondary or other non-original techniques are applied in gathering information.
This section provides results based on the research methodology applied. Therefore, data presentation should follow one of the standard techniques used in gathering the necessary information.
At this juncture, you will be required to analyse and discuss the results of your research, with the focus on the research topic and objectives. A comparative analysis is deemed necessary in developing the research discussion. The idea, in this case, is to connect the dots based on the various sections of the results. Further, there is the focus on how the research will be applied in the real world. Context must be maintained fully when engaging in the discussion section.
Conclusion and References
Finalize the research paper with a conclusion that summarizes your findings. You need to focus on the research objectives and the applied thesis statement. After the conclusion, a list of reference is needed as an acknowledgement of any secondary information used.