How to Start A Report: Effective Guide

A report essay is a writing assignment that typically requires students to discuss a topic in a structured, organized, and easy-to-follow format. This guide on how to start a report essay outlines how to write a compelling opening statement for your report essay.

Like other pieces, a report essay begins with an introduction, which sets the essay’s tone and flow. The introduction gives an overview of the report, provides background information on the subject, and includes the thesis statement, which summarizes the main idea. 

What Is A Report Essay?

Report essays present the facts about a project, situation, or process and analyze the issue. Reports can be technical, academic, or business-oriented. A report essay relays observations about a topic to the audience clearly and concisely. Examples of reports are formal journalistic reports, newspaper articles, or pieces written for advocacy. 

The first step towards writing a great report essay is planning. You must tailor your content to your audience, so identify your audience, their needs, and expectations.

Next is to collect and organize your information and put it in an outline. Outlining your report essay will help you stay focused. After outlining, you can begin writing your report. The first section is the introduction

Types of Reports

There are three types of reports: academic, technical, and business. The basics of these reports are the same, but notable differences exist between them.

  • Academic Writing: An academic report is a formal type of writing. It must be free of any form of slang or contractions. It should also be written in the third person and be devoid of pronouns like “I” and “we.”
  • Business Writing: Business report writing also requires a professional or formal tone. However, compared to the academic report, it’s less formal. Contractions may be permissible alongside imagery and data.
  • Technical Writing. A technical report is a document that covers the workings of something. Such reports are descriptive and follow a step-by-step, logical approach.

How to Start A Report Essay

How to start a report essay? The first part of your report is the introduction. The introduction set the tone of your report. Use a powerful opening statement to grab the reader’s attention and include significant points you’ll discuss in the body. Outline the problem and let the reader know why the report is relevant. Give a brief overview of your report, and include some key definitions. 

The introduction should tell the reader what the report entails and allow the reader to decide whether or not to read the report. Provide background information and state the thesis to let the reader know what the report will be about. The contents of the introduction should be brief but informative. 

The introduction should answer the following questions.

  • Why are you writing the report? Discuss the problem, define its purpose and explain why it is significant. 
  • What does the report cover? Outline the scope of the report, i.e., the issues to be discussed.
  • How was the report carried out? Provide details of the methods used to investigate the problem.
  • What limitations were encountered? Highlight any limitations to the reports and assumptions made.

Tips for Writing A Compelling Report Essay Introduction

Here are some tips to consider when writing your introduction. 

  • Keep sentences simple, and to the point. Do not include unnecessary details and ensure that every statement contributes to the purpose of the report.
  • Write in the active voice. The active voice makes your writing smooth and easier. It impacts your writing by emphasizing the thing or person responsible for an action. Active voice is direct and easier to understand.
  • Proofread your introduction and ensure there are no grammatical or spelling errors. You may read it aloud or have someone review what you’ve written. 
  • Do not include abbreviations and jargon in your introduction.
person holding on red pen while writing on book
Photo by lilartsy on Unsplash

Final Words

Reports are a form of writing that presents facts about a situation, project, or process. They’re devoid of personal opinions and follow a well-organized system. The purpose of a report paper is to provide the reader with an impartial and objective account of a subject matter. A proper report presentation makes a writer seem credible and trustworthy. The introduction is the first impression you give the readers, so it should be properly written.

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

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