Distinguishing a Report From an Essay

Do you know how to write comprehensive reports? What about essays? Do you know the difference between the two? Lots of people get confused with these two written works, especially students who are usually asked to write both kinds of papers during their academic years. Some workers and professionals are asked to submit them too. In order for you to write or produce complete, clear, and effective reports and essays, you need to know the mechanics or writing one. What are some important points that you need to take note of?

Reports Versus Essays

Reports are informative written works that may be produced or required of both workers and students. One of the main aims or objectives of reports is to examine, explore, analyze, and then show or present sets of data. They are usually done or accomplished in order to suggest or propose a solution to a particular problem. For example, you may have heard of annual or even quarterly financial reports that are presented by the finance team or department of a certain company. They draft these presentations in order to show the management their observations and recommendations about the latest trend in their group’s finance concerns. 

The writing style used in producing reports should be objective. Data gathered is presented in sections with headings or sometimes even sub-headings as deemed necessary. It is also advisable to place bullet points so as to properly and clearly present plans of actions or solutions. Graphs, charts, and other visual tools are also included as necessary. The audience or readers of reports are usually strictly targeted and specific which means either the supervisor or manager for workers and the teachers or instructors for students.

On the other hand, essays primarily are written works produced in response to a certain question, inquiry, or issue. The questions or topics used as basis for writing essays are usually of the practical or empirical kind. Essays are usually asked in college entrance exams, job applications, and the like. A well-written essay is composed of a clear and well-phrased or properly presented arguments or response to the topic to be discussed. 

Unlike that of reports’, the writing style for essay is more of subjective and free flow in nature. It is composed of short and long paragraphs without sections, headings, or sub-headings. Visual tools are not required. The readers of essays are usually the professor or instructor in the case of student essays or the evaluator or examiner in the case of job applicants. 

Now that you know the difference and main characteristics of reports and essays, you’ll be able to write comprehensive, clear, and substantial works from now on. The trick lies in the way you present, evaluate, and describe data or information that you have gathered. Apply the rules of clear and effective writing because this will greatly help you accomplish your writing task. Are you ready to be put to the report or essay-writing test?

Categories: Writing Tips   Tags: essay