Structure of Research Report

Structure of Research Report: A research report is one type that is often written in the sciences, engineering, and psychology about the research findings so that the readers can easily know the results and findings of specific research. A research report is typically made up of three main divisions: (i) Preliminary pages, (ii) Body of report, and (iii) Supplementary pages. The structure and content of the research report are given in Table.

Preliminary Pages

This section includes a title page, table of contents, and abstract.

Title page: The title should be concise, specific, and reflect the content and emphasis of the project described in the report. The researcher’s name should follow the title on a separate line with affiliation, name of the funding agency, or submission authority with address and date. All the contents of the title page should appear on a single cover page (Fig).

Table: Structure and content of research report

Broad divisionSectionContents
Preliminary pages  Title page        

Table of contents    

Concise title of the report, researcher name, affiliation submission agency, course, and date.

  Sections of the report with page numbers.
Summary of the whole report, major conclusions.  
Body of report  Introduction          


Results and discussion            

Conclusions and recommendations.
State origin of research, background, and purpose with relevant research in the same area.  

Instruments used experimental details and data collection.  

Finding of the research with tables and figures, interpretation and evaluation of results in comparison with other research in the same area.  

Summary of findings suggests suitable solutions or further studies.  
Supplementary pagesReferences    

The outcome of the project    

List all literature cited in your report.  

Include publications, patents, and industry-institute interaction.  

Additional information e.g. Surveys, questionnaires, etc.  

Table of contents: This contains a list of all sections with page numbers so that the required information can be easily located in the report by the interested readers.

Abstract or synopsis: Abstract is a very brief overview of the report in a condensed form. In this section, summarize the study, focusing on the results and conclusions including relevant quantitative data. It should be written last to reflect accurately the content of the report. A primary objective of a synopsis is to communicate to the reader the essence of the report.

Format of cover page for a final report submission
Fig: Format of cover page for a final report submission

Body of the Report

The body of the report or main text provides the complete outline of the research report along with all details. The main body of research has four major sections such as introduction, methodology, results and discussion, and conclusion and recommendations.

Introduction: The researcher must give a clear and definite statement of the problem, need for research, nature, and background of the problem. A review of previous literature on the project is also an essential component of the introduction. The scientists also need to logically connect the previous study with the current work.

Methodology: This section describes the methodology or procedure used in the research study. It includes instrumentation, procedures, techniques, and computational details. In theoretical reports, this section would include sufficient theoretical or mathematical analysis to enable derivations and numerical results to be checked. The main purpose of this section is to document all of your procedures so that another scientist could reproduce all or part of your work. However, procedures already published in some other journal should be summarized with the citation given for the other publication.

Results and discussions: This section presents the data and the statistical analysis by discussing the implications of the findings. Tabulation of data, charts, and figures can be used effectively to present results clearly and concisely. It is appropriate to discuss both theoretical implications and practical applications of the research findings. The researcher must present his/her analysis, opinions, criticisms, or advocacy supported by any previous studies.

Conclusions and recommendations: The research report should conclude by writing a summary of the project with major findings. It should include the limitations of the present investigation and the proposals for future research in the same area. A new hypothesis may be proposed based on the research study.

Supplementary Pages

At the end of the project report, including the references and appendix.

References: It consists of a list of all documents including journal articles, books, chapters, technical reports, and unpublished works mentioned in the text. All references should be arranged in alphabetical order by the last names of the first-named authors or using a standard established by an appropriate journal.

Appendix: It is useful in providing detailed information that seems inappropriate or too long in the main body of the research report. This is a provision for any ‘excess baggage. Include the technical data such as questionnaires, mathematical derivations, long tables and figures, CDs, etc.

The outcome of the project: This section includes the outcome of a research project in the form of publications in national and international journals and conferences, patents, industry-institute interaction, or up-gradation of the research infrastructure of the institute.

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