4 Key Differences Between Reports and Essays

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Whether you are in a school or college, there will be different kinds of written assignments you will have to complete and submit to your teachers. Depending on the type of project, you will have to decide how to progress with the assignment.

For instance, the teacher may assign you either a report or an essay for the weekend project. How exactly would you compose the two? Will you follow the same format and discourse? Of course not! Both things are completely different from each other.

If you wish to nail your next report writing or essay assignment, you must understand the key differences between the two. Although you can easily hire an essayservice.com to attain good grades for your assignments, we will attempt to highlight the differences between academic reports and essays to give you clarity on the matter. Read on to know the details!

1. Meaning

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First things first, one needs to understand the meaning of the two terms. While an essay is a piece of written content that focuses on an idea or thesis statement, an academic report is a gist of what you have learned through experimentation and reading.

An essay can be considered a broader term and is often used to oppose or support an argument, compare and contrast two or more subjects, or narrate a story. But academic reports are based on subjects like biology, sociology, chemistry, etc.

For instance, your teacher may ask you to write an essay on the topic “Relevance of modern technology in the education system.” In that case, you will have to concentrate upon the trends and shifts in technological advancements. Further, you can connect the same with education. Explain, with examples, how modern technology has improved the education sector.

When it comes to academic reports, the teacher can ask you to prepare an elaborate paper based on what you have studied and observed on a given topic. There, you will have to include all the minute details of the experimentation and explain the procedure and results accordingly.

Today, the availability of online essay writing service platforms has made it easy to adhere to quality standards in written assignments. Not only can students use numerous essay and report writing guides, but they can also pay professional writers to complete their assignments for them, which helps students to maintain good grades and keep up with the deadlines. Still, it is important that students grasp the basics of academic writing to maintain good performance.

2. Structure and Format

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The first thing that gets noticed in any written composition is its format. You can get negative marks if you use improper structure. It is, therefore, necessary that you know how to structure your papers.

When you start writing an academic report, keep in mind the elements your instructor suggested. There is no universal format that you need to adhere to. However, you should begin your assignment with a strong introduction, followed by bullet points, charts, tables, and graphs to make it all the more illustrative. The conclusion should sum up your observation. Your job is to present the relevant data and explain the same using suitable vocabulary.

If reports are data-oriented, it will be safe to say that essays are more about abstract thoughts and ideas. You begin with a stirring introduction where you use trigger words to intrigue the readers. Further, you state the thesis and move on to support your idea with relevant arguments.

Generally, you are required to divide the body of the essay into at least three parts. It is also important to start each body paragraph with a topic sentence and only then provide the evidence. The sources you use to provide evidence must be reliable and authoritative. It is best to use scholarly articles, science magazines, etc. You can find them using search engines dedicated to academic research. You should also learn to distinguish between primary and secondary sources. Finally, don’t forget to give a proper citation to each source and mention them in the bibliography if one is required.

In the end, you have to wrap up the paper by restating the key points and providing a conclusion. Then, to further intrigue the reader, you can leave an open-ended question or encourage them to read about the topic from other sources.

3. Purpose

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Essays and academic reports serve different purposes. And understanding this difference can help you nail these written compositions. An essay aims at making a valid argument, thus convincing your reader to agree with your point of view. It can also present factual information or abstract thought. You can even follow a storytelling pattern for your essays when appropriate.

On the other hand, academic reports are more formal and focus on your experimentations and observations. Through a report, you are required to share data and insights, thus delivering factual information supported by your own research. Besides, you have to be descriptive enough about how you obtained the results. Reports are meant to be accurate and illustrative.

4. Conclusion

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The concluding part of an academic report should be informational. Based on the data you have obtained during your research and experiment, you need to offer recommendations. The conclusion should be strictly data-specific. There is no place for creativity and hypothetical thoughts here.

On the other hand, you can take creative liberty in summarizing your ideas in an essay. End your argument in a manner that compels the reader to take some action. Make the conclusion powerful enough to leave a robust impact on the audience. But don’t stray off the topic. In the first place, your concluding paragraph should summarize the essay and restate the key points from each body paragraph.

Wrapping Up

Once you understand the differences between essays and reports, you can easily make gradual improvements in your writing. This will further enhance your grades and help you create a good impression on teachers. Always try to grasp the basics so that you can work on your style of writing and techniques. Next time you are assigned a report or an essay paper, focus on the characteristics, and you’ll be able to come up with an exceptional composition. And always remember to edit and proofread your paper before submitting it. Good luck!