It must be prepared in general scientific context that shows the adequacy of its methods thereby helping the experts to form an opinion how seriously the findings are to be taken.
A roper layout is needed for that purpose. An ideal layout of research report must include:
- Preliminary pages: it includes the title and date of the report, followed by acknowledgements in the form of ‘preface’ or ‘foreword’, after which there should be a table of contents followed by a list of illustrations and tables so that it is convenient for the readers to easily locate the information as and when needed.
- Main text: it includes the complete outline and details of the research report. The title of the study is repeated on the first page of the main text and on the second page, the other details on pages numbered consecutively. Each main section starts on a new page. The main text includes the following:
- Introduction: the research project is introduced here; the major/primary reason for conducting the research i.e. why the problem was worth investigating should be clearly stated here.
A brief summary of a relative study may also be stated along with the hypothesis, if any.
The major concepts involved in the research must be clearly stated in the introduction and the methodology adopted must be fully explained
The findings must be generalized, that will answer questions like; what was the basic design? By what means the data were collected? If measurements were through experiments, questionnaire, interviews or observation, then what were the manipulations, questions, or instructions given to the subject? How many were they? How were they selected?
The statistical analysis must be clearly stated along with the scope and the boundary lines of the research.
The limitations must be narrated as well.
- Statement of findings and recommendations:
After the introduction, the report must contain a statement of findings and recommendations in simple and unambiguous language.
The next step in writing the main text is presenting the findings of the study and valid results of the study supported by tables and charts.
The result is extended over several chapters and comprises the main body of the report.
The data in the result section is in the form of reductions and statistical summaries rather than raw data.
- Implications of the results: here, the researcher must again put his research results clearly and precisely. The implications derived from the results must be clearly mentioned.
The implications may have three aspects: (1) the inferences drawn from the study can be applied in similar circumstances. (2) The conditions of the present study which may limit the legitimate generalizations of the inferences drawn. (3) The relevant questions that remain unanswered or that might arise must be answered with suggestions.
A short conclusion summarizing all the main points at the end of a research is highly recommended. A conclusion relating to the hypothesis mentioned in the introduction should be stated. Also, a forecast of future of the subject and any other kind of research needed for the subject is desirable and useful.
- Summary: the research report can be concluded with a summary stating the kind of research, its methodology, major findings, and conclusions drawn from the result.
- End matter: Appendices should be enlisted in the end which contains questionnaires, mathematical derivations, sample information, etc, along with bibliography of sources.
Index enlisting names places and topics along with their respective page numbers must be gives. It works as a guide for the reader, so that he can easily locate the information as and when needed.