The basic outline for the Analytical Report consists of five parts:
- An abstract: Essentially a summary of the report. Researchers undertaking a project rely on abstracts to give them an idea of whether or not the paper meets their needs and criteria for their articles, presentations, or books.
- An introduction: This provides some basic background about the topic. An introduction gives the reader some preliminary information about the purpose of the paper and signals some of the key points to come.
- Data Section: This is essentially the body of the paper. In this section you provide the text, statistics, visual aids (graphs, tables, charts, illustrations), and citations.
- Conclusion: Here you essentially tell your reader what the report means. And that includes some important recommendations. For example, if you were to write a report about the shortage of elementary school teachers in public schools, your conclusion and recommendations would offer plausible solutions. The same may be said about a particular environmental hazard in a given region of the country: your report would discussion the problem and your conclusion would offer solutions.
- Works Cited (Bibliography): Depending on the nature of your report—technical/scientific or social sciences/humanities, use the APA format or the MLA format.