Instructor's Guide


Quizzes, Reflective Questions, and Activities

The following are the assignments embedded in the Written Reports tutorial:


Relationship to Other iStudy Tutorials

This tutorial is related to the iStudy tutorials on concept maps, brainstorming, source evaluation and search strategies, and Academic Integrity.


Suggested In-class Methods of Presentation


Optional Lecture

The instructor may want to cover the information from the tutorial in a traditional lecture format. This information is summarized in the Key Points section listed below.


Group Activity

Place the learners into small (3-5 person) groups. Assign each group one of the following topics:

Note that these are the main headings in the tutorial. Each group must use the tutorial as the source of information to gather data for putting together a short presentation on their topic. Each group must present their group's topic to the other groups.


Individual Activity

Assign each student the task of preparing and delivering a short written report. Students should not only complete the report, but also list how they conceptualized and completed each step of the report writing process (as detailed in the tutorial).

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Key Points

Types of Reports


Steps in the Writing Process

  1. Identify a Report Topic
  2. Understand Your Audience
  3. Develop and Refine Your Topic
  4. Create a Working Bibliography
  5. Evaluate and Synthesize Resources
  6. Take Notes on What You Read
  7. Organize Your Ideas and Create Structure
  8. Write the First Draft
  9. Revie and Edit the Report
  10. Cite References


1. Identify a Report Topic

Identifying something to write about is the first step in writing a report. The best way to begin searching for a topic is to conduct some initial research.


2. Understand Your Audience

When identifying a topic for your report, you should concurrently begin to learn more about the audience that will be reading your report.


3. Focus and Refine Your Topic

Almost any general topic that you identify will be too broad to write about in a comprehensive manner, so you'll need to narrow your topic. There are a number of techniques that writers use to help them focus and refine their topics.


4. Create a Working Bibliography

A working bibliography is an organized set of bibliographic information about the resources that you find during your research which might be helpful as you write your report.


5. Evaluate and Synthesize Resources

After you've identified resources, you can begin to evaluate if they will be useful to you.


6. Take Notes on What You Read

Once you've evaluated the various resources on your topic, you can begin to read them and take notes on what you read. There are three basic ways to take notes when researching a topic.


7. Organize Your Ideas and Create Structure

After you've taken notes on what you've read, you can begin to organize your ideas and create a structure for your report. Your report should have three main parts to it - the introduction, body, and conclusion - each serving an important function. Within the report there a variety of ways that you can structure your ideas.


8. Write the First Draft

Your goal in writing the first draft is to get your ideas onto paper.


9. Revise and Edit the Report

The goal during this step is to improve the manner in which you are communicating your ideas.


10. Cite References

Failure to cite references can be construed as plagiarism. Plagiarism is the act of using someone else's ideas in your paper without giving them credit for them. Plagiarism is a serious offense, which can result in expulsion. There are several different guidelines for citing references:

Information about the different types of documentation styles are available at the library and on the Internet.

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Through observing the group and/or individual activity, the instructor may assess student performance. Assessment criteria are as follows (Instructors supply the percentage weights):


Assessment Criteria





iStudy Tutorial


By listing and giving examples, the learner can identify:

  1. Four different types of written reports
  2. Three main parts of a report




By showing written examples, the learner demonstrates knowledge of:

  1. Audience understanding
  2. Developing and refining a topic
  3. Developing a draft
  4. Revision and editing
  5. Proper reference citation






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