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First Certificate – Writing a Report – Get It Right

First Certificate – Writing a Report – Get It Right

When you write a report here are the top things you need to think about:

  • You need to write 4 or 5 paragraphs, including an introduction and recommendation. 
  • The first paragraph should state the “aim of the report”+ where you got the information

  • Use headings to make it easier to read.

  • Use points under each heading with “bullet points” or numbers.

  • Avoid your personal opinion and “I” , “my” , “We” etc. Use  the passive voice.

  • Use formal language and generalising functions.

  • Sum up the report’s possible recommendations and suggest the best one(s).

Here is a typical task:

Write a report suggesting improvements to classes at Today School.

Look at a student’s answer to the question. Appropriate language is highlighted in red.

The aim of this report is to compare different ideas to make classes in Today School more enjoyable for students while learning at the same time. A large number of students were interviewed to find out differing opinions. 

Classroom Activities
Some of the students suggested using more videos and songs during the classes and some even mentioned that parties with alcohol would be a good idea. A few of them gave reasons why they preferred these activities:

  • Pop music and films are  interesting and topical

  • Alcohol makes people relax and talk more.

Outside  Class
The majority of students mentioned that homework should be reduced drasticallywhereas others expressed a preference for doing excursions in English, giving the following reasons:

  • Too much homework makes students stressed.

  • Excursions are a fun way of putting into practice what is learnt.

Some of the ideas have benefits, however, suggestions to allow alcohol and reduce homework should be immediately discarded. On the other hand, it is felt the majority of students would take advantage of more pop videos and excursions andso these suggestions are recommendable.

Other useful language for a report:

  • This report is intended to…

  • Many of those interviewed stated that….

  • Others pointed out that….

  • Several people thought that..

  • Whilst, …

  • Another option that was mentioned was…

  • Both/All the ideas seemed interesting but….

  • Taking all the points into consideration….

  • On balance then, I feel that….

  • Without a doubt the first option was…



Alan Giverin

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