Research report is a channel of communicating the research findings to the readers of the report. A good research report is one which does this task efficiently and effectively. As such it must be prepared keeping the following precautions in view:
- While determining the length of the report (since research reports vary greatly in length), one should keep in view the fact that it should be long enough to cover the subject but short enough to maintain interest. In fact, report-writing should not be a means to learning more and more about less and less.
- A research report should not, if this can be avoided, be dull; it should be such as to sustain reader’s interest.
- Abstract terminology and technical jargon should be avoided in a research report. The report should be able to convey the matter as simply as possible. This, in other words, means that report should be written in an objective style in simple language, avoiding expressions such as “it seems,” “there may be” and the like.
- Readers are often interested in acquiring a quick knowledge of the main findings and as such the report must provide a ready availability of the findings. For this purpose, charts, graphs and the statistical tables may be used for the various results in the main report in addition to the summary of important findings.
- The layout of the report should be well thought out and must be appropriate and in accordance with the objective of the research problem.
- The reports should be free from grammatical mistakes and must be prepared strictly in accordance with the techniques of composition of report-writing such as the use of quotations, footnotes, documentation, proper punctuation and use of abbreviations in footnotes and the like.
- The report must present the logical analysis of the subject matter. It must reflect a structure wherein the different pieces of analysis relating to the research problem fit well.
- A research report should show originality and should necessarily be an attempt to solve some intellectual problem. It must contribute to the solution of a problem and must add to the store of knowledge.
- Towards the end, the report must also state the policy implications relating to the problem under consideration. It is usually considered desirable if the report makes a forecast of the probable future of the subject concerned and indicates the kinds of research still needs to be done in that particular field.
- Appendices should be enlisted in respect of all the technical data in the report.
- Bibliography of sources consulted is a must for a good report and must necessarily be given.
- Index is also considered an essential part of a good report and as such must be prepared and appended at the end.
- Report must be attractive in appearance, neat and clean, whether typed or printed.
- Calculated confidence limits must be mentioned and the various constraints experienced in conducting the research study may also be stated in the report.
Objective of the study, the nature of the problem, the methods employed and the analysis techniques adopted must all be clearly stated in the beginning of the report in the form of introduction.
A research report forms a channel of communication between the research findings given by researcher on the one hand and the readers of the report on the other hand and effective communication of research findings to the readers is the basic task of the research report.
Hence researcher should keep in mind the following precautions while preparing the research report:
- The length of the report should be kept keeping in view the fact that it should cover the subject in length but it should be short enough to maintain the interest of readers.
- The report should not be dull. It should be such as to sustain one’s interest.
- The report should possess the features of simplicity and avoiding vagueness.
- Readers of the report are more interested in acquiring a quick knowledge of the main findings and the report should provide a ready availability of the findings with the help of charts, graphs and statistical tables.
- The contents of the report should be well thought out keeping in view the objective of the research problem.
- The grammatical mistakes should be avoided and the report should be prepared strictly in accordance with the techniques of composition of report. Writing such as the use of quotations, foot notes, proper punctuations and the use of abbreviations in the foot notes etc.
- Logical analysis should be the very basis of preparing a research report.
- The report should also suggest the policy implication relating to the problem under consideration and should help us in future forecasting.
- All the technical data should be appended in the report.
- A list of bibliography of various sources consulted for the research study should be prepared and be given in the report.
- A good report should also possess an index of subjects and authors as well. It should be appended at the end of the report.
- Report should be attractive in shape, neat and clean whether typed or printed.
- Calculated confidence limits must also be mentioned in the report and the various limitations experienced by the researcher in his study should be stated in the report.
- A good report should also mention the objective of the study the nature of the problem the methods and analysis techniques used. All these things should be given in the form of introduction in the report.
Thus after describing all the things related with the interpretation and report writing, we should always keep in view the fact that the process of writing a report is an art which is learnt by practice and experience.