Summary: Writing Style for Engineering Reports
Steps in Report Writing
Determine purpose and audience, gather information, choose form of report
and method of presenting information - e.g., graphs, charts, photographs
Create a list of points that you need to make e.g., main points of problem,
objectives, costs, etc..
Decide on structure and how to organize information. Are appendices
required? Where will supporting data be placed? What are major headings?
What is technical background of readers (executive, technician,
layperson)? What information are they primarily interested in?
Start with your collection of rough notes and sketches, not a blank sheet.
Two drafts are often required - the first is a skeleton for organization. The
second draft fills in the gaps and expands where necessary.
Organization - The report can be arranged in several different ways:
(1) follow chronology (unfolds from beginning to end, cause/effect patterns),
(2) division by spatial arrangement (for complex physical systems), or,
(3) logical partitioning (break up problem into subsystems related by