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Report WritingReport Writing
Preparing you for the summersPreparing you for the summers
Dr Sorab SadriDr Sorab Sadri
Professor of Political Economy and ManagementProfessor of Political Economy and Management
JECRC University, JaipurJECRC University, Jaipur
• Very soon you will be going into the corporate
world for a period of 8 weeks in part fulfillment
of your MBA requirements and present four
copies of your project report.
• Since this report will show case you as well as this
institute it must be completed in a professional
manner. This presentation is to assist you in doing
so. It must be read along with the detailed note
circulated by JECRC
• This presentation is valid even for
project work undertaken as a part of
the JECRC initiative under faculty
guidance as well as independent
Library Research on selected and
approved topics in lieu of industry
• Lets make our reports more
presentable and meaningful.
• Let us make our reports more
• Let the report speak for our
scholastic achievements at JECRC.
• What is a report?
• Characteristics of an effective report
• Report structure
• Procedure for report writing
What is a report?
• A report is a structured and formally
written presentation directed to
interested readers in response to
some specific purpose, aim or
request. There are many varieties of
reports, but generally their function
is to give an account of something, to
answer a question, or to offer a
solution to a problem.
Characteristics of an
An effective report is:
• appropriate to its purpose and audience
• clear and concise;
• well organised with clear section heads.
One important advantage that a
report has over other written
communication is that it follows a
standardised format. This enables
readers to find and focus on specific
pieces of information. Most reports
are modelled on the following
structure (modified where
1. Title page
4. Table of contents
5. List of Tabs./Figs.
7. Company’s Background
9. Literature Survey
10. Research Objectives
Identifies the report with the following
• Author's name, position and qualifications
• Authority for report
• Place of origin
Top: The title in block capitals in font size 16 and centered.
Next: The full name of the postgraduate student also in block
capitals font size 14
Then: A Study Conducted at……………………………………………………..
under the guidance of Prof……………………………………………
In part fulfillment of the
Masters Degree in Business Management
The School of Management Studies at JECRC University, Jaipur
The work done is original and must be so certified by the
student in writing.
There must be a sealed and signed certificate from a senior
person in the company on the corporate letter head stating
that the student has successfully completed the summer
project(s). This original letter along with the signed
declaration by the student must be attached to the original
copy of the dissertation and a copy of the same attached to
all copies of the dissertation.
Apart from this the college will also provide a certificate to
the student which will be bound to all the copies of the
• Acknowledgement must be short and
included in the beginning with a
declaration that this is an original
work of the student.
Table of contents
• Shows the section titles and major
• Listed in order of appearance
• Indicates page locations.
• Standard page numbering begins with the
• The Abstract or Executive Summary is
usually page numbered with lower case
Roman numerals (i, ii, iii, iv, etc.)
Table of contents
• In the Table of Contents, list only the
starting page of each major section.
• Have a major section for “Research
Questions,” then indent and list each
research question separately as
subheadings along with start page.
• Use a short descriptor for each research
question so your readers know what the
information is about (not just RQ1, RQ2,
List of Figures/Tables
• It is advisable to include a reference to all
tables and figures included in the report in
an index format, at the beginning of the
• This facilitates the reader to quickly link
and surf to all pictographic
Abstract / Summary:
• [about 1-2 pages] : This is a short overview
of your entire report. It should contain a
very brief but concise overview of your
research purpose and objectives, methods,
major findings, and specific conclusions
• [about 1-2 pages]
• Page 1 of the report starts here!
• Introduce firm, including background
/history of the firm, its purpose, mission
statement (if any), competitive
• In short familiarize the reader with the
company and its business
• [about 2 - 3 pages]:
• (a) Background of the project; why
study is being conducted, for whom;
includes a brief summary of the
initial client interview.
• (b) Statement of the overall project
AVOID BILGE AND DO NOT DOWNLOAD
INFORMATION FROM COMPANY BROCHURES
OR THE INTERNET JUST TO FILL UP
• [about 4 - 5 pages]:
• includes theory part of the project topic
• Remember .. research begins with
Literature Survey and does not end there.
• Your research question springs from the
• Includes everything a person new to the
subject needs to know of your research
work...definitions/ jargons/ current
scenario/ rules of the game..etc
• [about 1 - 2 pages]:
• a list of specific research questions to be
• you can put the Research Question in bullet form
• List the research questions in the order you plan
to discuss them in the results section.
• Do not discuss or list any research questions you
have dropped or ended up not addressing.
• [about 4 – 5 pgs]:
• (a) Type of Research
• (b) Method of Research
• (c) Data collection method – Describe
your procedures and why you chose
this particular method, and why it
was the best option given your
• (b) Sample plan. Report all methods and
procedures in detail and use appendices as needed
for detailed information (i.e., maps, time/area
matrix). If you have changed later to other parts
of the plan (i.e., locations, times, etc.), only report
what you actually ended up doing.
• (c) Sample Description. Give your desired and
final sample size, report the response rate
(number of surveys completed divided by all
respondents contacted, not including ineligibles),
and describe reasons for non-response, such as
refusals. Then, report demographic
characteristics of your sample using exhibits as
needed. Conclude with an assessment of how well
your sample represents the target population.
• (d) Data Classification
• (e) Data Analysis Methods List and discuss the
mathematical/statistical or other computational tools
employed to analyze the data
• Development (including pre-testing) and GENERAL
description of questionnaire (i.e., length and major
• Put a copy of the final questionnaire in the Appendix and
refer to it in this section.
• If you are using a schedule then say so and include it in the
• Put each research question on a SEPARATE page.
• Do NOT discuss any research questions that you did not end
• For each research question:
• (a) Restate the research question (perhaps as the section
• (b) Identify questions in the questionnaire used to answer
the research question and briefly describe the question
• You need to state the question type (e.g., 5-pt Likert scale
anchored by…., 7-pt semantic differential scale anchored
by…, checklist with 10 items, 4-item ranking question, open-
ended, etc.) but NOT level of measurement (interval,
ordinal, nominal—although you could refer to ordinal and
nominal as “categorical” questions and interval as “scale or
open-ended”—most students who have taken a course in
Research Methodology will understand that).
• EXAMPLE: To answer this research question,
survey question #3 asked respondents to rate on
a 5-point scale where 1 = “very satisfied” and 5 =
“very unsatisfied,” a list of 5 different items such
as “convenience” and “cleanliness.”.
• (c) Report your findings and do not be overly
technical in discussing the statistical procedures,
although you might footnote inferential test
statistics if applicable.
• Present your results in a manner your average
readers can easily understand!
• Summarize your key points and refer to exhibits
for detailed findings.
• Be sure to conclude with a summary
paragraph that gives your interpretation of
findings and your best answer to the
research question based on the data. If
your findings are “mixed” or inconclusive,
• (d) Exhibits should be placed on the same
page or the next page as your discussion of
the answer to the research question. Do
NOT put the exhibits in an appendix!
LIMITATIONS, CONCLUSIONS, AND
• [≈ 2 pgs]:
• Include a brief discussion of the major project limitations
• Limitations include things such as time & money constraints, non-
response issues like break offs, non-response to open-ended
questions, problems with your research design or questionnaire,
cautions about sample representative ness, etc.
• Also include
• (1) an overall summary of your major conclusions and
• (2) a list of recommendations, if appropriate, for your client. The
recommendations should be based on your research conclusions.
Don’t make recommendations not clearly supported by your
findings. A bullet format is often an effective way to list your
major conclusions and recommendations if you have them provided
you take pains to explain these points somewhere.
• The bibliography lists all publications either cited
or referred to in preparing the report.
• Use the Referencing System recommended either
according to the Chicago Manual of Style or the
European Style. Both styles have been explained
in the Research Methodology Class.
• A report without a sufficient bibliography is not
acceptable at the postgraduate level.
Glossary (if included)
• Take care to see that it is arranged
• If definitions are taken from a
source like the web dictionary or
from some published work, then it is
appropriate to say so in each case.
• placed at end of a report if included
• arranged in the order referred to in the report.
• This must include:
– A copy of the questionnaire, schedule as well as sample
working of data
– Any technical or very detailed material (e.g., maps, time
sampling grids, instruction sheets for interviewers, etc.).
– Any company document that has a direct bearing on the
study conducted and which the reader, in your opinion,
must be aware of.
– A sample of the working in case the data analyzed
through SPSS or RATS is extensive e.g. 3000 responses
• Do NOT simply cut and paste as that amounts to
• Use Excel or SPSS output tables and include it
into your project and use these as exhibits.
• Make appropriate graphs and professional tables
(using either SPSS or Excel).
• Each exhibit and appendix item should be
referred to in the text (e.g., “as shown in Exhibit
3”) when it is introduced.
• Each exhibit must be numbered and titled
• and should contain labels and other information necessary
to interpret it.
• Exhibits should be able to suffice as a stand-alone view of
results, so make sure they are properly labeled and include
legends where needed.
• Every table must be numbered, serially, given a title and
then inserted in the text to make reference to it easy. All
graphs must clearly show what the dependent variable is
and what the independent variable is so the axes must be
• The report should be written in the third person
and in past tense.
• Check your early assignments in Research
Methodology and class notes for help.
• Use headings and subheadings liberally. It makes
it easier for the reader to follow along.
• The student should use A/4 size white paper and
printing should be double-spaced in font size 12
with sub titles in font size 14 and main title in
font size 18 (sans serif)
• Take care to provide margins: left- 35mm, right
-20mm, bottom – 20mm and top -35 mm.
• You may wish to begin each separate section on a
• It may be easier to produce your report if you
keep tables/figures on separate pages from the
• In any case, the exhibits should be located in the
text near the discussion of those figures and not
in the appendix.
• Check grammar and spelling on your final
draft! Part of your grade will be based on
grammar, spelling, and proper writing style
(which means professional and objective!).
At the postgraduate level spelling and
grammatical errors are unforgivable so use
a good dictionary and the spell check
provided on the p.c..
• There are times when you may need to explain
some things in a few sentences. Use end notes for
this purpose. End notes can come at the end of
the chapter or at the end of the report. But it
must be given chapter wise and numbered
• Whenever you quote anything more than two
sentences or 15 words please indent the same
within the text. You may use italics or inverted
commas to give the quote but not both.
• The Summer Project is an integral part of the
MBA curriculum and every student is expected to
treat it seriously and complete an 8 week project
in the subject of their specialization i.e.
Marketing Finance Information Technology or
• When examinations for Semester II end students
should start their summer projects immediately
• Students are expected to maintain regular
contact with their project guides @ one
conversation a week, and seek guidance after they
have put in their individual effort.
• The total marks awarded to Summer Projects in 100 of
which 10 marks are for periodic reporting/ correspondence
with the internal guide, 30 marks are for the report and 60
marks for its individual oral defense before a panel. This is
not only for Finance, Marketing and Human Resources
students but all dissertations including all specialization
• The final grade will be given on (one) i.e. the original copy of
the dissertation and signed by the panel members taking
the oral defense. For this purpose one blank white sheet
must be attached at the very beginning of the report and
immediately after the replica of the cover. This graded
copy will be stored in the examination record room and one
copy (unmarked) will go to the JECRC Library for reference.
• One bound copy of the dissertations must be submitted on
or before 31st
October 2010 to the respective internal guide
who will read the same and pass it on to the by Thursday
November 2010. The viva voce examinations for oral
individual defense before a panel shall commence.
Thereafter. Marks for Summer Projects will be reflected
in the Mark Sheet issued for Semester III.
• The students need to retain one copy with them for future
reference and one copy need to be submitted to the
company in the format, style and content as desired by
their respective company.
• Feb 28, Individual Project/ Research Report
Proposals should reach guides
• April 5, Research objectives decided
• Aug 1, Rough draft 2 b submitted to
internal guides as a soft copy
» can submit earlier thru mail also
» be in constant touch with ur guides
» @ one conversation a week
• Report Title
• Report Length
For your own good
take this with the
seriousness it merits