School Report Writing: 10 Top Tips and Expert Advice for 2022

Learning Ladders Blog School Report Writing: 10 Top Tips and Expert Advice for 2022

How to write a school report

We would all like to think that parents thoroughly read through our carefully crafted pupil school reports. How they must appreciate the hours we put into school report writing! However, the reality is that reports are often not as cherished as we would hope. It’s very easy to get them wrong. Wrong name in a copy and paste. Blanket statements for the class such as “We had a great time at Arundel Castle”, then finding out the student didn’t attend that day…

But it’s also just as easy to get them right. Being specific. Writing in simple language. Providing opportunities for parents to get more involved in their child’s education. All of these elements help to create a great school report.

To help you write great end of year reports, let’s answer the simple question: what is a school report? In a nutshell it’s a written assessment of a pupil’s performance and provides valuable guidance to parents and teachers, as well as students.

Reports take time

Unfortunately, school report writing can take time. To make them as personal as we would like to, they can take hours. We want to add personal touches. We want to tailor everything to every time. But if you are writing them frequently, end of year reports can eat into quite a few weekends. Writing them termly, or bulk writing huge reports yearly is very time consuming. Automation can help nowadays. No longer do you have to use the clunky systems of the past – many modern assessment systems can take away some of the strain. Ongoing communications with parents can streamline reports, so you don’t have to include those things which have already been discussed.

Personalising school reports can go wrong

Despite all attempts to the contrary, personalisation can go wrong. It can be difficult when trying to remember everything about every child over the whole year. Remembering exactly who did what at the nativity performance is difficult in June! For those teachers who teach one subject to many children it is even harder.

Teachers and parents each have a different focus Teachers may spend ages pouring over assessment data to pick out some key targets and achievements. Some parents may want to jump to the end of the report to see if their child has loads of friends. Other parents do want to have detailed information on their child’s successes and want to help from home. A lack of detail in this area could leave them feeling like they cannot build on the recommendations.

So how do you get it right?

Here are 10 top tips to assist you with school report writing:

  • Ensure nothing is a total surprise . A parent should not be finding out via the report anything which will come as a total shock – good or bad! If their child has been off task 80% of the time, they shouldn’t be finding out just before the holidays. This doesn’t help them to support changes. The report should build on and confirm the ongoing conversations, adding to the parental engagement which has gone beforehand throughout the year.
  • Keep it simple . Avoid the jargon and acronyms which abound in education. Add details and simple explanations where necessary. A glossary of terms relevant to the school could even be part of the template. This can be especially helpful if you have your own assessment terms. You may also want to add a quick guide to terms such as “fronted adverbials” also.
  • Be specific . Statements should be simple, and in layman’s terms, but be based on solid evidence. “Joshua did well this year” is not specific enough. Parents may like to hear such a lovely statement, but it gives them nothing to engage with. They will end up asking Joshua what he did well in… which Joshua may also not be sure of the details.
  • Use the ‘4 parts’ rule . Each statement in a school report should include 4 elements: the achievement/success; evidence of that success; the target; resources to help meet the target. So, a four-part phrase might be: “Joshua has progressed well in handwriting. He is now joining most of his letters in each word. His next step is to keep the sizing of his handwriting consistent. A great website to help model this is…” All too often we stop after 3 parts: success, evidence, target. This leaves parents stuck when they want to support that target. Directing them to resources that match the school’s curriculum helps the parents.
  • Follow school guidance . Every school has their own ideas about what should be included. How many words to include, for example, and usually a template. If you’re new to a school but want to get started on reports early, make sure to ask for some examples from last year to get a sense of what is expected. You may think you got the reports done before the holidays, but there is nothing more deflating than finding you need to rewrite them completely.
  • There is a place for automation . Teachers may have been stung by old report writing software. It may have messed up genders or come up with some grammatically terrible sentences. Many modern assessment platforms have much more advanced techniques and tools available now. You spend the term and year updating data for the graphs and assessment information. Why not then allow the system to take some of your workload? Your assessment knows exactly where the pupils are, based on your RAG ratings of statements and such. They will output sentences to reports which follow your own school’s curriculum, and it knows who is a girl or a boy! And gets the names right every time. Technology, at its very best, is efficient, which leaves you more time to write the personal statement parts.
  • Add resources and links . Again, some systems have a reporting online option. This links parents to resources that are curriculum-linked. This means that for each target they are directed to high-quality resources to use at home. This can turn your school report writing into a significant part of your teaching. Also, your learning and assessment cycle. Parents being involved in their child’s education makes a huge difference. Where you are printing reports, you can add short links. These could be simple recommended resources such as YouTube channels, websites and even apps, which you know are educationally sound.
  • Make the layout easy to follow . The school template can be important in making sure reports are easy to understand. If there are grades for some subjects and not others, a design change can help to make that seem strange. As with marketing rules, there are ways to bring the parent’s eye to the key information they need to see. At Learning Ladders, we have worked really hard to ensure our reports stand out. They are based on these principles outlined. You may not have control over your school template, but you can ensure sentences are concise and paragraphs are not too long. These make the report much easier to read.
  • Don’t overdo it . A few key successes and a few targets are great. Make it manageable. A list of 20 successes might seem wonderful but will be very overwhelming. For the core subjects, 3-5 successes and 3 key targets are plenty. For foundation subjects, 3 successes and 1 or 2 things to work on would be perfect.
  • Treat it like a parent’s evening . When writing the personal part of the report, I like to pretend the parent is in front of me, as though I am saying everything to their face, imagining their reaction. That helps me to be enthusiastic and realistic – which comes across even on the page. This also helps me to write each pupil’s report statement in one go, rather than going back and forth to edit (which is when I am more likely to make mistakes!). I also try to imagine their questions and add a bit of context or answer those upfront, as part of the report.

To find out how Learning Ladders makes school report writing easy, whilst keeping all those individual touches that parents love, have a read about our automated pupil reports .

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How to Write a Report: A Guide

Matt Ellis

A report is a nonfiction account that presents and/or summarizes the facts about a particular event, topic, or issue. The idea is that people who are unfamiliar with the subject can find everything they need to know from a good report. 

Reports make it easy to catch someone up to speed on a subject, but actually writing a report is anything but easy. So to help you understand what to do, below we present a little report of our own, all about report writing. 

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What is a report? 

In technical terms, the definition of a report is pretty vague: any account, spoken or written, of the matters concerning a particular topic. This could refer to anything from a courtroom testimony to a grade schooler’s book report . 

Really, when people talk about “reports,” they’re usually referring to official documents outlining the facts of a topic, typically written by an expert on the subject or someone assigned to investigate it. There are different types of reports, explained in the next section, but they mostly fit this description. 

What kind of information is shared in reports? Although all facts are welcome, reports, in particular, tend to feature these types of content: 

  • Details of an event or situation
  • The consequences or ongoing effect of an event or situation
  • Evaluation of statistical data or analytics
  • Interpretations from the information in the report
  • Predictions or recommendations based on the information in the report
  • How the information relates to other events or reports

Reports are closely related to essay writing , although there are some clear distinctions. While both rely on facts, essays add the personal opinions and arguments of the authors. Reports typically stick only to the facts, although they may include some of the author’s interpretation of these facts, most likely in the conclusion. 

Moreover, reports are heavily organized, commonly with tables of contents and copious headings and subheadings. This makes it easier for readers to scan reports for the information they’re looking for. Essays, on the other hand, are meant to be read start to finish, not browsed for specific insights. 

Types of reports

There are a few different types of reports, depending on the purpose and to whom you present your report. Here’s a quick list of the common types of reports:

  • Academic report: Tests a student’s comprehension of the subject matter, such as book reports, reports on historical events, and biographies 
  • Business reports: Identifies information useful in business strategy, such as marketing reports, internal memos, SWOT analysis, and feasibility reports
  • Scientific reports: Shares research findings, such as research papers and case studies, typically in science journals

Reports can be further divided into categories based on how they are written. For example, a report could be formal or informal, short or long, and internal or external. In business, a vertical report shares information with people on different levels of the hierarchy (i.e., people who work above you and below you), while a lateral report is for people on the author’s same level, but in different departments. 

There are as many types of reports as there are writing styles, but in this guide, we focus on academic reports, which tend to be formal and informational. 

>>Read More: What Is Academic Writing?

What is the structure of a report?

The structure of a report depends on the type of report and the requirements of the assignment. While reports can use their own unique structure, most follow this basic template:

  • Executive summary: Just like an abstract in an academic paper, an executive summary is a standalone section that summarizes the findings in your report so readers know what to expect. These are mostly for official reports and less so for school reports. 
  • Introduction: Setting up the body of the report, your introduction explains the overall topic that you’re about to discuss, with your thesis statement and any need-to-know background information before you get into your own findings. 
  • Body: The body of the report explains all your major discoveries, broken up into headings and subheadings. The body makes up the majority of the entire report; whereas the introduction and conclusion are just a few paragraphs each, the body can go on for pages. 
  • Conclusion: The conclusion is where you bring together all the information in your report and come to a definitive interpretation or judgment. This is usually where the author inputs their own personal opinions or inferences.  

If you’re familiar with how to write a research paper , you’ll notice that report writing follows the same introduction-body-conclusion structure, sometimes adding an executive summary. Reports usually have their own additional requirements as well, such as title pages and tables of content, which we explain in the next section. 

What should be included in a report?

There are no firm requirements for what’s included in a report. Every school, company, laboratory, task manager, and teacher can make their own format, depending on their unique needs. In general, though, be on the lookout for these particular requirements—they tend to crop up a lot: 

  • Title page: Official reports often use a title page to keep things organized; if a person has to read multiple reports, title pages make them easier to keep track of. 
  • Table of contents: Just like in books, the table of contents helps readers go directly to the section they’re interested in, allowing for faster browsing. 
  • Page numbering: A common courtesy if you’re writing a longer report, page numbering makes sure the pages are in order in the case of mix-ups or misprints.
  • Headings and subheadings: Reports are typically broken up into sections, divided by headings and subheadings, to facilitate browsing and scanning. 
  • Citations: If you’re citing information from another source, the citations guidelines tell you the recommended format.
  • Works cited page: A bibliography at the end of the report lists credits and the legal information for the other sources you got information from. 

As always, refer to the assignment for the specific guidelines on each of these. The people who read the report should tell you which style guides or formatting they require. 

How to write a report in 7 steps

Now let’s get into the specifics of how to write a report. Follow the seven steps on report writing below to take you from an idea to a completed paper. 

1 Choose a topic based on the assignment

Before you start writing, you need to pick the topic of your report. Often, the topic is assigned for you, as with most business reports, or predetermined by the nature of your work, as with scientific reports. If that’s the case, you can ignore this step and move on. 

If you’re in charge of choosing your own topic, as with a lot of academic reports, then this is one of the most important steps in the whole writing process. Try to pick a topic that fits these two criteria: 

  • There’s adequate information: Choose a topic that’s not too general but not too specific, with enough information to fill your report without padding, but not too much that you can’t cover everything. 
  • It’s something you’re interested in: Although this isn’t a strict requirement, it does help the quality of a report if you’re engaged by the subject matter. 

Of course, don’t forget the instructions of the assignment, including length, so keep those in the back of your head when deciding. 

2 Conduct research

With business and scientific reports, the research is usually your own or provided by the company—although there’s still plenty of digging for external sources in both. 

For academic papers, you’re largely on your own for research, unless you’re required to use class materials. That’s one of the reasons why choosing the right topic is so crucial; you won’t go far if the topic you picked doesn’t have enough available research. 

The key is to search only for reputable sources: official documents, other reports, research papers, case studies, books from respected authors, etc. Feel free to use research cited in other similar reports. You can often find a lot of information online through search engines, but a quick trip to the library can also help in a pinch. 

3 Write a thesis statement

Before you go any further, write a thesis statement to help you conceptualize the main theme of your report. Just like the topic sentence of a paragraph, the thesis statement summarizes the main point of your writing, in this case, the report. 

Once you’ve collected enough research, you should notice some trends and patterns in the information. If these patterns all infer or lead up to a bigger, overarching point, that’s your thesis statement. 

For example, if you were writing a report on the wages of fast-food employees, your thesis might be something like, “Although wages used to be commensurate with living expenses, after years of stagnation they are no longer adequate.” From there, the rest of your report will elaborate on that thesis, with ample evidence and supporting arguments. 

It’s good to include your thesis statement in both the executive summary and introduction of your report, but you still want to figure it out early so you know which direction to go when you work on your outline next. 

4 Prepare an outline

Writing an outline is recommended for all kinds of writing, but it’s especially useful for reports given their emphasis on organization. Because reports are often separated by headings and subheadings, a solid outline makes sure you stay on track while writing without missing anything. 

Really, you should start thinking about your outline during the research phase, when you start to notice patterns and trends. If you’re stuck, try making a list of all the key points, details, and evidence you want to mention. See if you can fit them into general and specific categories, which you can turn into headings and subheadings respectively. 

5 Write a rough draft

Actually writing the rough draft , or first draft, is usually the most time-consuming step. Here’s where you take all the information from your research and put it into words. To avoid getting overwhelmed, simply follow your outline step by step to make sure you don’t accidentally leave out anything. 

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes; that’s the number one rule for writing a rough draft. Expecting your first draft to be perfect adds a lot of pressure. Instead, write in a natural and relaxed way, and worry about the specific details like word choice and correcting mistakes later. That’s what the last two steps are for, anyway. 

6 Revise and edit your report

Once your rough draft is finished, it’s time to go back and start fixing the mistakes you ignored the first time around. (Before you dive right back in, though, it helps to sleep on it to start editing fresh, or at least take a small break to unwind from writing the rough draft.) 

We recommend first rereading your report for any major issues, such as cutting or moving around entire sentences and paragraphs. Sometimes you’ll find your data doesn’t line up, or that you misinterpreted a key piece of evidence. This is the right time to fix the “big picture” mistakes and rewrite any longer sections as needed. 

If you’re unfamiliar with what to look for when editing, you can read our previous guide with some more advanced self-editing tips . 

7 Proofread and check for mistakes

Last, it pays to go over your report one final time, just to optimize your wording and check for grammatical or spelling mistakes. In the previous step you checked for “big picture” mistakes, but here you’re looking for specific, even nitpicky problems. 

A writing assistant like Grammarly flags those issues for you. Grammarly’s free version points out any spelling and grammatical mistakes while you write, with suggestions to improve your writing that you can apply with just one click. The Premium version offers even more advanced features, such as tone adjustments and word choice recommendations for taking your writing to the next level. 

writing reports for students

Ultimate Report Writing Tips for Students: Best Ideas [Free]

At some point, whether in school or university, you will be required to do report writing. Generally, reports are used to communicate information, which was compiled as a result of studies and analysis. For instance, academic reports are to discuss the findings of studies or surveys.

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The tips on report writing are easy to follow:

  • Don’t use jargon.
  • Check the formatting.
  • State facts.
  • Elaborate on meaning.
  • Check grammar.

To assist with academic work, our team has prepared several report writing tips for students for you. In the present article, we will talk about the report’s definition and structure. Besides, check the report writing tips according to the type.

So, if you’re wondering about the rules of report writing, proceed to the next part.

  • 📋  What Is a Report?
  • 🧩  Report Structure
  • Financial Report
  • Medical Report
  • 🔗  References

📋 What Is a Report?

A report is a way to communicate data that you have collected and analyzed so that the intended audience can understand the information concerning a specific issue or problem. Reports always follow a clear and defined structure. It includes sections and subsections and allows the information to be organized logically.

Top tips for report writing.

But that’s not all:

There are several essential report writing tips you have to learn as a student :

  • Use formal language. A report is an analysis or a description based on research. Therefore, a writer has to use formal language. It requires passive voice use, little to no personal pronouns, neutral verbs.
  • Ensure the correct format. For the readers to clearly understand the report, a specific format should be followed. All sections should be in plain English. The body might be written using jargon or specific terminology.
  • Prepare in advance. Before starting to write the report, identify the audience and its purpose. Once you do that, collect and outline the information. With the proper organization, the writing part will be easier to conduct.
  • Keep to the facts. Focus your writings on the facts. Seek relevant and appropriate information for your report. Find credible sources and provide evidence and illustrative examples based on the information found.
  • Make your points clear. Write clearly and concisely. Make sure to write short and simple sentences in plain English. Use linking words and active voice. Also, don’t forget about the punctuation.
  • Reference your sources. Referring to someone’s idea in your report, make sure to reference it in the text. After you do that, don’t forget to check whether the sources are correctly referenced. Also, see whether in-text citations match the reference list.
  • The guidelines. Did you do what you’ve been asked to?
  • The structure . Make sure that the required sections of the report are present.
  • The information. No gaps in the literature should be present.
  • The argument. The information should support the point.
  • The terminology. Explain every unknown word and phrase.
  • The formatting. Font, headings, and numbers should be consistent throughout the text.
  • The effectiveness. The report should be easy to read and effectively convey the info.

🧩 Academic Report Structure

There are many different types of academic reports that depend on the various disciplines for which they are written. Yet, each one relies on a similar structure, which is a minimum requirement.

Let’s take a look at report writing structure:

  • Overview : This is where you will write a summary of the whole report informing the reader what is covered. At the very least, this summary will introduce the purpose and the primary features. You might also mention any conclusions reached and offer up recommendations.
  • Background : This is the section in which you provide the purpose of the report in greater detail. The background information for the text is also introduced here. This background addresses the 5 Ws: Who, What, Where, When, and Why.
  • Discussion : This is where you present your results and findings. You will include all your evidence, data, findings, and arguments in this section. It must be well-organized. Use headings and subheadings to ensure your information makes sense to the reader.
  • Conclusion : This is where you review the primary points from the discussion and state all conclusions to which you have arrived. You should first discuss the main result, followed by the remaining findings, present logically. You can also provide recommendations if it’s relevant to your report.

Each of these must be present in a general report structure and format. However, specialized types of report writing might call these sections by different names. They might include additional parts to help deliver the required information.

At the very least, you should generally include a title page, a table of contents, and appendices. The University of Leicester provides excellent examples of a report writing format.

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🔬 Report Writing Tips According to Type

Let’s take a look at some specific and common types of reports that you might be asked to write with that in mind.

But remember:

Regardless of whether you see a specific format for report writing here or elsewhere, you have to ensure that it fits with the type you are required to write.

To make sure this is the case, here are some helpful tips for report writing:

  • Read all formatting guidelines carefully. Pay close attention to the language used in report writing guidelines. It is rare for an official website to use colloquialisms, so they might not be reliable if you see them.
  • Make sure the guidelines are suitable. Some can be unfitting for the type of report you will be writing. Since there are many types, there is a good chance that the guidelines you have come across are for a different kind of report.
  • Do not carelessly follow any guidelines. Even if the guidelines for writing a report essay are written according to high standards, it does not mean that you need to include all sections recommended in the guidelines. Only add the parts that are relevant to your report and modify them if necessary.

The academic writing format varies with the type of report. Therefore, it’s time to start learning about the most popular ones.

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Financial Report Tips

A financial report is a type of business report writing, and its structure is very similar to the organization provided above. If you are a student of business, then you need to learn how to write them.

What should be included in a financial report?

  • External financial statements. These include income statements, comprehensive income statements, balance sheets, statements of cash flow, and statements of stockholders’ equity.
  • Notes to financial statements.
  • Communication concerning quarterly profit and related data through press releases and conference calls.
  • Quarterly and annual reports to stockholders.
  • Information about finances posted on the business’ website.
  • Financial reports to legislative offices, including quarterly and annual reports to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
  • Documentation relating to the issuance of common stock and various securities.

A financial statement consists of several elements. Two elements are essential: the balance sheet and the income statement. Additionally, cash flow statements and notes to financial statements are prepared.

The main elements of a financial report are as follows:

  • Title Page. The part includes the title of your report, your name, and the date of submission.
  • Executive Summary . It is essentially the Overview discussed above, with which you present a summary of the entire report, including the methods of analysis used, findings, and recommendations.
  • Table of Contents . Here you provide a thorough list of the sections and subsections in the report.
  • Introduction . It is the equivalent of the Background discussed in the general structure. You should include an outline of the report and any relevant background information and terms of reference the reader needs.
  • Body . It is the equivalent of the Discussion presented above. You should divide the discussion of the data and findings into organized sections and subsections.
  • Conclusion . As discussed above, here you will summarize the report’s main points, the findings, the conclusions drawn, and any recommendations, if relevant.

You can refer to the University of Wollongong for detailed information on how to write a financial report.

Lab Report Tips

The time will come when you have to present your lab results in the form of a formatted laboratory report. This is where you might be wondering how to write one. Relax. It’s easier than you think.

A lab report is a scientific paper that summarizes the goal of the lab you conducted, including your methods and findings. Its purpose is to demonstrate to your instructor that you understood the lab and adequately present your findings.

A lab report generally consists of seven primary sections, as follows:

  • Title Page . The part is where you will include the title of your experiment, your name (and the names of other group members), the course’s name, your instructor’s name, and the date of the experiment. The title page of the scientific report should indicate what the experiment is about. The variables of the study should be there.
  • The point and reasoning to the examination within one/two sentences.
  • The participants and setting.
  • The technique: what design, what surveys or questionnaires were used?
  • The significant findings. You can mention specific statistical findings or simply summarize the results.
  • How does the study contribute to the knowledge within the literature? What was the research done for?
  • Introduction . It is a summary of the experiment and why you are conducting it. You should include any research questions or hypotheses addressed in the investigation. Remember that you only need to use one of them. The introduction should present general information about the topic. Ideally, the writer should start broad and then narrow down to a specific point. That way, the study’s aim does not appear out of thin air but has a theoretical background. A research question example: Can background rock music improve students’ math performance? The equivalent research hypothesis example: Background rock music can have a positive impact on students’ math performance. Keep in mind: The question allows for both a positive and a negative answer, while the hypothesis gives a specific direction.
  • Participants . Provide information on how many participants were recruited and how you obtained the sample. Add any necessary and relevant demographic data.
  • Design . State the experimental design. Provide the information on the variables, how were they operationalized, and what controls were used?
  • Materials . Provide the list of the materials used. Include the reliability of the measures used in the study.
  • Procedure . Describe the exact process briefly but in sufficient detail to allow the replication of the studies.
  • Results . Briefly state what you found when conducting your experiment. You can use several methods to display your data, including use tables and graphs, to ensure your results are easy to understand. Present the descriptive statistics followed by inferential. Name the statistical test. Report the means, standard deviations, confidence intervals, and any other appropriate statistics. The effect size is optional to be reported.
  • Discussion . It is the most significant section of your lab report, which means it will be the longest. Here, you will discuss the critical analysis of your findings and provide an interpretation of them. Make sure to write the discussion in plain English, avoiding statistical terminology. Compare the results of the present study to the ones used in the Introduction section. Discuss the similarities/differences. Be sure to link this discussion to your original research question or hypothesis and discuss your methods’ potential limitations. Upon that, discuss constructive ways your study could be improved. In case there were incidents in your research, mention them. Provide an idea for future research.
  • Conclusion . Briefly summarize the experiment or lab you conducted and the results. It is not a section to include new information. Summarize the key points and findings in no more than 3-4 sentences.
  • References . Consult the required citation style guidelines, and be sure to include all your sources in this section. Find out more about format styles and APA citation style in particular. Remember that it is not a bibliography. Every time you refer to an idea or a name, you need to cite the information source.

Naturally, you might be writing lab reports in many sciences, such as physics, biology, chemistry, and geology. However, they, along with technical report writing, tend to follow the same format. Here is a lab report example for students:

Students’ math performance depends upon a number of factors. Among these, the learners’ innate abilities, the effectiveness of instruction, and the psychological climate in the classroom are the most important. Manthei and Kelly (2010) concluded that classical and popular music has no effect on academic performance.

The goal of this research is to investigate the impact of rock music on the math performance of high school students. The hypothesis of this study is that background rock music can have a positive impact on the psychological climate in the classroom and on students’ math performance. The same math test was carried out in two different classes with and without background rock music…

The University of Toronto provides a great breakdown of the structure of a lab report. For a lab report sample, check out the University of Delaware .

Medical Report Tips

If you are a medical student, then you are bound to be required to write medical reports. Since prominent doctors began to announce their significant findings concerning their progress, medical reports became an essential part of delivering responsible medical care.

There are three essential tips for writing a medical report:

Unlike many other types, when writing a medical report that you intend to share with a third-party, you will need the patient’s consent or their legal guardian prior. A formal request might also be a reason to write a report in the medical profession.

All original notes to accompany a medical report. The Royal Children’s Hospital of Melbourne provides an excellent set of guidelines for writing a medical paper. Monash University also provides a tutorial on how to write a case report with the use of a medical report sample.

A case study is one of the most common types of medical reports, which involves examining a particular subject, like a person or a group. A case study can be used as a foundation for all other types of medical reports.

The following is its general writing format:

  • Background : It provides an introduction to the report. In it, you should outline all the background information that is relevant to the patient’s situation. It includes the date, time, place, and reason for all examinations and consultations.
  • Medical History : The section provides you with an opportunity to describe the patient’s medical history briefly. Here you will include all personal and family medical history. Show how that relates to the current situation.
  • Examination : Here, you will present information on the examination results, including the mental, emotional, and physical state of the patient at the time of the study. You should also note the condition of any areas of the body relevant to the reason for the examination. Negative findings relating to the case should also be noted.
  • Specimens : If any of them are taken, or tests are conducted, you must detail this first. Obtain them in the medico-legal report. It should provide information about the reasons for obtaining the specimen, the place it was found, and the way it was labeled. Refer to any photos taken, and the text should identify each one.
  • Management : If you have any comments on patient management, you should include them here. It might be inappropriate to comment on a patient’s investigations, procedures, and management. However, if the treatment is continuing, a further report might be required.
  • Opinion : While the facts must be presented, the physician’s professional opinion is also of interest, and you should provide this. You should formulate this opinion from an objective and impartial position. Some thoughts might be beyond the author’s expertise. Therefore, it is possible to avoid writing a statement.

To see how it all works out, check a medical report sample .

Report Topics

  • Financial reports for Automatic Data Processing . 
  • Report on the peculiarities of Benihana restaurants’ strategy.  
  • Write a report analyzing the financial ratios of a logistic company Brambles Ltd.  
  • Kimball Hospital and Tanner Medical Center merger report . 
  • Examine and write a report on the aspects of the furniture industry in the United States. 
  • Report on the marketing strategy of Emirates Airlines .  
  • Profitability of a grocery store: a financial report.  
  • Conduct an economic analysis of Walmart and describe your findings in a report.  
  • Write a report on the diversity of local fauna.  
  • Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of Amazon Web Services .  
  • A report on the specifics of Corona Regional Medical Center management. 
  • Study the impact of the cauliflower supply chain on the environment.  
  • Workplace report for Fresh Price Accounting Inc. 
  • Write a medical report on the state of America’s population health .  
  • Prepare a report about the child labor rates.  
  • Examine and report the rates of recycling in the United States .  
  • Research the difference between series and parallel circuits .  
  • A financial report on the current situation of St. Mary’s Hospital.  
  • Glovo investigative report . 
  • Write a business report on an office supply store.  
  • Conduct a financial analysis of Rhodium company and present a report.  
  • Prepare a lab report on standing wave formation.  
  • A medical report on short- and long-term effects of acute coronary syndrome on patients.  
  • Examine Amazon’s growth strategy.  
  • Starbucks annual report. 
  • Analyze the unique aspects of Amazon’s corporate social responsibility program.  
  • Study and present a report on Pfizer Inc.’s problem-solving approach.  
  • Write a report evaluating Under Armour’s marketing communications . 
  • Conduct an experiment verifying Newton’s law of cooling and present a lab report.   
  • Prepare a medical report on the efficacy of a program helping to achieve a healthy body mass index .  
  • Analyze the current economic situation of Cadbury .  
  • Write a report on the expansion of stock at value for Tesla.  
  • Conduct an analysis of Venus Mobile Inc.’s management strategy and report the results.  
  • Explore the financial situation of Wachovia bank .   
  • Research the challenges and profitability of Relaxing Travel Company .  
  • Examine the effectiveness of Tom Ford’s brand strategy and present a report.  
  • Write a report on the impact of the guesthouse sector on the Norwich economy.  
  • Scientific report on osmosis egg experiment . 
  • Analyze and report on the financial performance of Procter & Gamble .  
  • Prepare a financial report on Ryanair .  
  • Study the aspects of Apple’s business strategy and present a report. 
  • Explore and report the challenges of Roeslein & Associates, Inc . 
  • Riot Blockchain Inc.’s strategic audit report. 
  • Provide a financial report on Mark & Spencer company.  
  • Write a medical report on the effect of stress on human health.  
  • Conduct brand analyses of Casio and Roland companies and prepare a report. 
  • Analyze the financial ratio and competitive position of Abel Athletics company .  
  • Prepare a report on the aspects and efficacy of Samsung Mobile company strategy. 
  • Report on software’s feasibility. 
  • A financial report on EarthWear Clothiers company. 

Thanks for reading! We hope that now you understand how to write a report. We’d love to see your opinion on the article in the comment section below.

This might be interesting for you:

  • Top Report Writing Tips: How to Make a Great Report
  • Good Book Report: How to Write, Topics, Tips and Ideas

🔗 References

  • Types of Sources and Where to Find Them: Primary Sources (Illinois University Library)
  • Profreading: UW Madison Writing Center
  • August Vollmer biography explores famous police chief’s UC Berkeley ties: Berkeley News
  • Report Structure: Western Sydney University
  • Here Are 5 Financial Reports You Should Be Running: Forbes
  • How To Write a Lab Report: ThoughtCo.
  • Writing a good medical report: Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne
  • HOW TO READ A FINANCIAL REPORT: Stanford University
  • Sample Laboratory Report: Hamilton College
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107 Report Card Comments to Use and Adapt

no image

Written by Justin Raudys

Reviewed by Sarah Tino, M.Ed.

See your students' performance at a push of a button

With Prodigy's reports, teachers can easily track student progress and see their strengths and growth opportunities – all while the student has fun playing Prodigy Math!

  • Teacher Resources

Learning skills (positive comments)

Learning skills (needs improvement), addition and subtraction, skip counting, place value, comparing numbers, addition with regrouping.

  • Word problems
  • Language (general)

Reading responses

Reading comprehension, response journal, note taking, distance learning.

  • Tips for writing effective report cards
  • Key considerations for effective end-of-year report cards

Just about every teacher agrees: report card comments are important to provide insights and next steps to students and families. But there are few who actually look forward to writing them.

Because every instructor knows working under tight deadlines to create upwards of 20 unique and detailed reports at the end of the year or term isn’t exactly straightforward (or particularly fun). That's especially true in the era of distance learning.

And while no one at your school knows your students better than you do, writing valuable report card comments for each of them can be a huge challenge.

That’s why we created a list of 107 sample report card comments — starters to help you find ideas, inspiration, and insights while writing your own report cards.

The 107 report card comments in this list will help you:

  • Instill a  growth mindset in students
  • Build stronger home-to-school connections
  • Write stronger leads and use livelier language
  • Choose the right phrasing when writing positive and constructive report card comments

Report card comment starters

You'll notice that the report card comments below can act as a springboard for more fully developed ones. But don't worry, using them you'll be able to take some of these one-liners and turn them into insightful and actionable next steps!

For example, you'll be able to take a 1st grade number sense comment like "Your child is able to add and subtract numbers up to 20 using various manipulatives" and transform it into:

Your child is able to add and subtract numbers up to 20 using various manipulatives. This was evident when he was working independently to solve a real-world problem by adding toys in the classroom toy bin. As a next step, they should continue to add to larger numbers to encourage his skills. You can support him by asking him to add his own toy piles at home.

Or taking a responsibility-related learning skill comment from "Your child is able to take responsibility for her own actions both in and out of the classroom" to:

Your child is able to take responsibility for her own actions both in and out of the classroom. She often checks her agenda and day planner to make sure she has all of the necessary materials to complete work at home before leaving. During indoor recess, she takes time to tidy up everything she was playing with.

Notice the difference?

Compared to a single number or letter grade, report card comments can provide even more value to your students and their families. In other words, a number or letter or grade captures the what , while an accompanying comment captures the how .

Depending on the age group or grade level you teach, a letter or grade letter might be enough. However, research in Phi Delta Kappan, the professional journal for educators, suggests:

Comments that identify what students did well, what improvements they need to make, and how to make those improvements, provided with sensitivity to important contextual elements, can guide students on their pathways to learning success and ensure that all learn excellently.

Gather insights into student performance all year long and make report card writing easier with Prodigy, the adaptive math game that students love.

  • ________ is confident, positive and a great role model for his/her classmates.
  • ________ is frequently among the first to help and mentor other classmates. He/she is a valuable part of the classroom.
  • ________ has shown excellent ability to set goals and be persistent in achieving them.
  • ________ is interested in his/her own learning, listens attentively, and makes a solid effort to avoid distractions that could interrupt the learning process.
  • ________ is accountable and responsible. He/she makes smart decisions, admits mistakes and listens to opportunities to improve.
  • ________ relates well to classmates and is appreciative of different perspectives and experiences.
  • ________ manages his/her emotions maturely and responds to feedback appropriately.
  • ________ always looks for ways to be helpful in the classroom.
  • ________ is dependable and reliable, follows directions effectively, and follows through on his/her commitments to him/herself and others.
  • ________ is thoughtful, insightful and thorough in written and verbal communication, and has a talent for expressing his/her ideas clearly.
  • ________ works well with classmates in group work and often takes a leadership role.
  • ________ shows a positive attitude with classmates in group projects and activities, and both takes and gives suggestions and directions effectively.
  • ________ shows maturity when solving problems with classmates and uses good communication.
  • ________ excels at applying what he/she learns in the classroom to real-world and real-life situations.
  • It has been a pleasure to have _______'s enthusiasm, positivity and maturity in my class.
  • ________ is an enthusiastic member of the class and shows a willingness to learn.
  • ________ shows responsible behavior, works well with a group and shows appreciation for the efforts of classmates.
  • ________ is focused during classroom activities and willingly participated in class discussions.
  • ________ performs independent work with confidence and focus.
  • ________ works independently and takes pride in work done well.
  • ________ is focused in class and willingly participates in group discussion.
  • ________ is very conscientious and shows excellent effort and care with daily work.
  • ________ demonstrates a willing and conscientious effort in his/her daily work.
  • ________ shows a conscientious effort to learn.
  • ________ has done a great job facing and overcoming big challenges this year. Please continue to nurture and encourage this behavior over the summer.
  • ________ shows responsibility and follows directions whenever they are given.
  • ________ listens to and follows directions precisely and attentively.
  • ________ follows directions promptly and accurately.
  • ________ is an active participant in class.
  • ________ is a hard worker who calmly perseveres through challenging topics.
  • ________ is encouraged to demonstrate more responsible attitudes and behavior in the classroom.
  • ________ needs to show more appropriate behavior when interacting with classmates.
  • ________ needs to pay attention to the use of appropriate language at all times
  • ________ requires encouragement to listen attentively during group sharing times.
  • ________  needs to listen to directions more attentively during lessons.
  • ________ would benefit from showing a greater desire to contribute ideas in class.
  • ________ needs frequent reminders to be attentive during instructions and lessons.
  • ________ needs to improve his/her cooperation in group settings. He/she should work on voicing feelings and opinions and listening to others.
  • ________ needs to improve his/her work with others. He/she must ensure to accept a share of the work when participating in a group assignment.
  • ________ needs to improve on working independently and be sure to ask for assistance only when it is needed.
  • ________ often struggles to focus in class, which harms his/her ability to engage well with class activities and assignments.
  • ________ is encouraged to use time wisely to finish tasks in the time required.
  • ________ is encouraged to be more responsible in completing tasks without needing regular reminders.
  • ________ needs to show by the quality of work and use of class time that he/she is properly engaged in the learning process.
  • ________ consistently needs reminders to focus on time management.
  • ________ needs to follow classroom rules more closely throughout the school day.

Math (general comments)

  • ________ is having considerable difficulty with math. I recommend he/she work on studying ________ and ________. This extra practice will help him/her feel more relaxed when doing math in the classroom. Please contact me if you need materials to get him/her started.
  • ________ has a good understanding of all math concepts taught so far this year. He/she continues to turn in excellent assignments and especially enjoys hands-on math activities.
  • ________  has a positive attitude towards math but continues to have trouble in a few key areas. He should practice every evening at home. Areas that need extra attention are ________  and ________ .
  • ________  demonstrates a good understanding of all math concepts studied and communicates with clarity and good justification of reasoning.
  • ________ needs to work on increasing his/her speed in math facts. He/she should continue with daily practice with a focus on addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
  • ________ seems to need continuous encouragement in math. He/she continues to struggle with basic math concepts for his/her grade level.
  • ________ is having a difficult time in certain areas of math. Areas in need of extra work are ________ . Working on these problem areas every night would help improve his/her learning outcomes.
  • ________ is struggling to keep up in math. He/she could benefit from practicing the multiplication table and should also continue to practice the long division process.
  • ________ is easily distracted during math lessons and behavioral issues are interfering with his/her learning. We will be working on more difficult subjects and he/she will struggle if he/she does not pay attention in class.
  • ________ is having trouble with math tests. He/she does well on assignments, but does not seem to retain information for tests. I always give a week’s notice before tests, so please be sure ________ studies and adequately prepares for them as they approach.
  • ________ is able to calculate addition and subtraction facts to 18 with confidence and accuracy.
  • ________  is becoming more able to calculate addition and subtraction facts to 18 with confidence and accuracy.
  • ________  requires more time and practice in calculating addition and subtraction facts to 18
  • ________ needs to put more effort into learning to calculate addition and subtraction facts to 18.
  • ________  is able to skip count forward and backward by twos, fives, tens, and hundreds to complete short patterns.
  • ________  is learning to skip count forward and backward by twos, fives, tens, and hundreds to complete short patterns.
  • ________  needs practice with skip counting forward and backward by twos, fives, tens, and hundreds to complete short patterns.
  • ________  needs considerable practice with skip counting forward and backward by twos, fives, tens, and hundreds to complete short patterns.
  • ________  is able to demonstrate place value concepts to give meaning to numbers from zero to 1000, identifying ones, tens, and hundreds.
  • ________  is developing an understanding of place value concepts to give meaning to numbers zero to identifying ones, tens, and hundreds.
  • ________  requires more time and practice to demonstrate place value concepts to give meaning to numbers 0 to 1000, identifying ones, tens, and 100s.
  • ________ is able to compare numbers to 1000 using terms such as greater or less and greatest or least.
  • ________ is learning to compare numbers to 1000 using terms such as greater or less and greatest or least.
  • ________ requires support to compare numbers to 1000 using terms such as greater or less and greatest or least.
  • ________ demonstrates a limited understanding in comparing numbers to 1000 using terms such as greater or less and greatest or least.
  • ________ can demonstrate and explain the process of addition of whole numbers up to 100, with and without regrouping.
  • ________ requires ongoing support to demonstrate and explain the process of addition of whole numbers up to 100 with and without regrouping.
  • ________ requires considerable attention and individual instruction to demonstrate and explain the process of addition of whole numbers up to 100 with and without regrouping.

Word problems (math)

  • ________ is able to complete word problems using one- and two-digit addition, showing his/her work and writing a full sentence answer.
  • ________ is becoming more confident in his/her ability to complete word problems using one- and two-digit addition, showing his/her work and writing a full sentence answer.

As we move into language and literacy, the following sections include starter report card comments which cover reading, writing, oral communication and critical thinking skills.

Language arts (general)

  • ________ ’s (comprehension, spelling, reading) has greatly improved, but he/she still needs extra work in (comprehension, spelling, reading). Please contact me if you need supplemental learning materials to use at home for practice.
  • ________  is conscious of putting care into his/her daily writing work, and frequently goes beyond the minimum requirements for assignments.
  • ________ has trouble with his handwriting. I believe he/she can form letters well, but has to slow down and take a little more time. Neater handwriting will improve his/her schoolwork overall.
  • ________ makes a good effort to make his/her handwriting legible. He/she is able to print on the lines, use good spacing, and form letters correctly.
  • ________ needs to focus on her spelling. More improvement is needed in the areas of (dictation, weekly spelling tests, sentence structure). Daily practice at home will help improve his/her results.
  • ________ shows the ability to quickly use spelling, punctuation and grammar rules that were recently taught. He/she is able to quickly learn new skills and is eager to apply them to his/her writing.
  • ________ is having considerable difficulty with reading, particularly with fluency and comprehension.
  • ________ speaks well in front of the class, but requires improvement in written language. He/she is having trouble with (dictation, copying words correctly, story writing, creating logical sequences). Further practice is needed in this area.
  • ________ continues to make excellent progress in spelling and reading. He/she works hard to submit work that is free of grammatical errors.
  • ________ has difficulty remembering previously discussed writing skills and often makes errors with punctuation, grammar, and overall sentence structure. Basic writing skills need improvement.
  • ________ is able to offer direct responses to his/her readings and supports ideas with sound reasoning and specific examples.
  • ________ is learning to offer more direct responses to her reading experiences supported by reasons, examples, and details.
  • ________ needs frequent support to offer direct responses to his/her reading experiences supported by reasons, examples, and details.
  • ________ shows good ability when completing reading comprehension tests.
  • ________ would benefit from extra practice with reading aloud and discussion of content.
  • ________ consistently demonstrates comprehension of short spoken texts by answering questions, and explaining the events described.
  • ________ consistently reads grade-level material independently.
  • ________ uses good editing skills and correctly places capitals, quotation marks, question marks, apostrophes, commas, and periods.
  • ________ is doing a good job of breaking a story into paragraphs
  • ________ determines various forms of writing and identifies important ideas through the development of insightful questions and answers.
  • ________ is able to analyze character actions, story plots, and shows strong fluency with reading.
  • ________ uses correct spelling, grammar and punctuation when writing simple sentences.
  • ________ is encouraged to show increased attention to the use of correct spelling, grammar and punctuation with general writing skills.
  • ________ needs more time and practice in the use of correct spelling, grammar and punctuation with general writing skills.
  • ________ requires considerable assistance to achieve the correct spelling, grammar and punctuation when writing simple sentences.
  • ________ shows an excellent understanding of note taking from lectures and readings in preparation for tests and assignments.
  • ________ requires ongoing support to develop an understanding of note taking from lectures and readings in preparation for tests.
  • ________ was very engaged and focused during distance learning activities, and participated in class discussions.
  • ________ stayed motivated to complete assignments during distance learning, and turned in all required materials on time. 
  • ________ needed some extra prompting to stay engaged during online lessons, but participated well in discussions when called upon. 
  • ________ modeled good online learning behavior for other students.
  • ________ was disruptive during online learning and did not meaningfully participate in class discussions.
  • ________ handled technical problems well and was always prepared.
  • Although he/she couldn’t always access a device, _________ consistently completed online assignments and asked thoughtful questions.
  • ________ should ask more questions during online discussions to avoid confusion later.
  • ________’s attendance during online lessons was infrequent and assignments were not always completed.
  • ________ worked well independently and in a group setting during distance learning activities.
  • ________ is excellent at completing distance learning activities independently, but struggled to engage with his/her classmates during breakout sessions or class discussions.
  • ________ is a technology superstar! He/she rarely needed assistance and even helped other classmates troubleshoot issues.
  • ________ asks good questions and always reaches out proactively when he/she needs help with an assignment or lesson.

Tips for teachers to write more effective student report card comments

1. give yourself extra time and start writing comments early.

Teacher at desk writing with paper and pen.

Somewhere around the halfway point to your deadline for report cards, you make your best effort to use time at the end of each week to reflect — and jot down notes — about your students’ performance and class week.

What are their strengths and weaknesses? How are their social skills developing with classmates? How is their class participation - are they an enthusiastic learner? Have they shown great improvement in one particular subject area? Are homework assignments getting done? Have any new challenges come up that affect learning?

Even just a few minutes of note-taking in the weeks preceding report card deadlines will help to ease your stress when the time comes to write your final comments.

Moreover, having a dated log of information detailed throughout the school year will help you remember how students are performing throughout each week, which can be valuable information come parent-teacher conference time.

This will also help to engage and reassure parents who want relevant and detailed commentary about their child’s performance at school.

2. Use free, curriculum-aligned apps for teachers

Prodigy Math screenshot.

Use Prodigy to write insightful report cards with a minimum of hassle. Prodigy Math is an engaging math adventure for students where success depends on correctly answering adaptive math questions. 

As students play, you’ll get insights into:

  • Which skills students are practicing
  • How far they’ve progressed through the curriculum
  • What they’ve mastered and where they need more support

Use one of Prodigy’s eight reports to track student progress throughout the year. When the time comes to write report card comments, you’ll have detailed reports on all your students’ achievements.

Just getting started with Prodigy? No problem! The first time students explore the world of Prodigy Math, they’ll start completing the Placement Test — without even knowing. Once they’re done, you’ll have a snapshot of the grade level they’re at, what they know and specific skills they still need to work on.

Five middle school students sitting at a row of desks playing Prodigy Math on tablets.

Spend more time teaching and less time grading

Prep for standardized tests, deliver adaptive skill practice or test students on a new skill — all while they play Prodigy Math, Prodigy English, or both!

3. Be encouraging, informational and professional

Teacher writing at desk.

Although every report card cannot be glowingly positive, do strive to write in an encouraging and informational tone. As you write constructive report card comments, use encouraging language that focuses on the student’s opportunity for improvement.

For example, instead of describing a student struggling with listening as a “bad listener,” remark that the student “would benefit from listening more carefully.”

If appropriate, frame a negative comment in terms of what students are doing well -- and consider how this more successful characteristic can help them bolster performance in other areas.

4. Use a consistent format

Two teachers walking together in hall.

Lead your report card comments with the positive comments, followed by areas that need more attention.

Choosing the right format for reporting information will simplify the entire process, while resulting in a clearer and more organized final product.

If you are unclear about your school’s format for report cards, request samples or consult with other teachers or staff members to clarify.

5. Be honest

Teacher using tablet with student in class.

Being open and honest about a student’s performance requires tact and consideration with regard to how you  express  those comments. Be transparent, and remain mindful that your goal is to improve your students’ learning experience.

Openness and honesty are key to ensuring that experience is the best it can be. If possible, discuss what  intervention strategies  you can use to help improve the student’s learning outcomes. 

As elementary teacher Donna Donaghue remarks in her book  A Guide for Beginning Elementary Teachers: Getting Hired and Staying Inspired :

If there is a problem, most parents will be grateful to you for telling them and will want to help you correct it as soon as possible. Many problems that show up at school are also problems noticed at home, so your comments will not surprise parents. Ideally, at some point prior to receiving the progress report, parents have already discussed the problem with you.

6. Move on if you get stuck

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If you get stuck completing the comments for a particular student, move on to your other students and return to it later. You will likely have more trouble completing comments for students who have multiple areas needing further improvement and attention.

Feel free to move on and return to those students periodically or as you find the right language to express your insights.

7. Keep parents and guardians in mind

Teacher sitting with student in class.

While every report card comment is ultimately about your student, think of your students’ parents or guardians as much as possible and offer suggestions for their participation.

In fact, if you can, keep parents up to date on an ongoing basis. This will help ensure they don't get caught off guard by any of your comments.

As you make note of your students’ strengths and weaknesses, endeavor to include practical insights into how parents can involve and support their child at home. If possible, make reference to how you use  differentiated instruction  to support the student in question.

Simple examples of tips for parents include:

  • "Encourage your child to read. It doesn't have to be on your own either. Dedicating time before bed to read together can help make it seem like less of a chore."
  • "Find homework help for your child if needed. Myself and other parents who are also getting homework help for their child are great resources to get started."
  • "Ensure that your child completes their homework by creating a homework routine with your family where incentives like TV or computer time come after homework."
  • "Help your child with organization skills at home. If a room in your house could be tidier, try using that as an opportunity to sort things like toys or dishes and utensils."
  • "Help your child prepare for math tests by focusing their skills in addition and subtraction. If they don't like studying with traditional worksheets, try a digital game-based learning tool to help get them excited about the process."

As high school educator and teaching comprehension expert Anne Goudvis writes in her book Strategies That Work:

It is important that you include the parents in your comment so they know the child’s education is a joint mission. Sometimes you need to sound firm so that parents know you need their help and that you will not allow their child to continue inappropriate behavior.

8. Try not to repeat yourself

Teacher writing report card comments on desk.

It is unlikely that your students or parents will compare their report card comments, but it is still a best practice to aim for unique commentary for each student that reflects each, individual learning outcome.

9. Proofread, even if you don’t want to

Report card time is perhaps your busiest period of the year, and it is understandable that you want to simply get them over with.

Despite this, you should make sure to double check all your comments before hitting print and handing them out. All your communications to parents are a reflection of you as a teacher, and should mirror the care and attention you show your students in class.

10. Notify parents

no image

Make use of your school’s parent portal or email system to let parents know — as needed — that report card time is coming up.

This will help parents be prepared, and will also ensure that any important questions they may have are addressed before the final report cards are delivered.

Did you know?

If you're using Prodigy Math in your classroom, you can connect parents to follow their child's progress. A free parent account comes with a monthly report card and insights into classroom learning, helping them stay informed of how their child is doing in class. They can also send their child an encouraging message to cheer their child on as they play and practice skills in Prodigy!

11. Use specific examples with the help of direct observation

Student and teacher working together in class.

Record and use classroom anecdotes in your assessments. No matter how involved you are in your students’ progress, it can still be difficult to produce specific examples related to their performance if you haven’t recorded them along the way.

When you notice a positive or negative skill, ability, strength, or weakness in a class activity or assignment, be sure to note it down so that you may refer to it in your report card comments. Likewise, consider noting a sample of a student’s work every week or two.

To help with ease of access, keep ongoing files of this work in a personal folder or use a digital tool such as a Google Doc.

Putting this into practice is a time-saver and helps prevent last-minute stress. A strategy like direct observation and note-taking (as soon as possible) is far more reliable than trying to recall information and behaviors from weeks or months prior.

12. Try using tech to help

Writer's block happens to all of us, including teachers. If the report card comments in this article didn't help, fear not, there are still plenty of tools and resources to give you a helping hand.

One new option for teachers is using artificial intelligence (AI) to assist with report card ideas. For example, teachers can use tools like ChatGPT to generate examples for their specific needs.

When using chat technology, try to keep your prompt concise and easy to follow. A good template prompt to follow is:

"Write [number] report card comments for students studying [subject] in [grade]."

Here are some more specific examples to help get you started:

  • Write 50 report card comments for students studying social studies in 5th grade.
  • Generate 20 report card remarks commending a student for a positive attitude to learning.
  • Create 10 report card comments that focus on a student needing to improve their attitude to learning.

Alternatively, you can use spreadsheets and report card builders to manually piece together a report card based on a template of comments.

Important tip: When using AI chat technology, make sure you don't submit any personal details about you or your students. Instead let the tool use a placeholder like "Student".

Key considerations for report card comments at the end of the year

Report card comments should aim to deliver feedback to students and parents that is  personalized, detailed,  and  meaningful .

Teacher looking stressed at desk.

Writing report card comments doesn’t have to be stressful. Use these strategies to create livelier, more meaningful evaluations.

Effective report card comments emphasize and discuss:

  • The specific, notable strengths that a student has shown and should attempt to continue to show
  • The specific elements of knowledge, skills, and other outcomes recognized in the curriculum that are the most pertinent to a student’s achievement or development in the period of assessment
  • The major next steps for improvement that will: identify the student’s most important learning needs, offer next steps for students and offer specific recommendations for how parents and guardians can help the student’s learning habits and skills (or the development of those habits and skills)

Effective report card comments are personalized – customized to each, individual student – and discuss:

  • The student’s learning preferences, willingness to learn, and interests
  • Detailed evidence of learning or skill-development gathered from in-class observations, and/or student assignments

Effective report card comments are expressed with clear and simple phrasing, using:

  • An encouraging and/or positive tone
  • Language that is easy to understand for both students and parents, as opposed to educational jargon used from the curriculum

Report Card Comments: Final Thoughts

no image

Common Sense Education observes that "effective parent communication is crucial in helping students learn. But, for busy teachers it can be challenging just to keep up... Transparency and equity are key to managing any communication between home and school."

Personalized report card comments that are clear, precise, and meaningful are essential for informing students and their parents about what students have learned, what their strengths are and how they can effectively progress.

Among the pressure and deadlines of writing report cards, it can be helpful to keep these key goals in mind.

Get inspired by the report card comment examples — and strategies for success — above to ensure that precision, clarity, and meaning shine through in your report card comments.

When it comes time to hand out your report cards, you can do so with the full confidence that you are doing yourself — and each of your students — the justice your hard work deserves.

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A report on a student meeting

A report on a student meeting

Learn how to write a report.

Do the preparation task first. Then read the text and tips and do the exercises.



Improvements to Oak Hall

  • Introduction

This report aims to describe problems in Oak Hall of Residence and discuss possible maintenance work to solve them. The two biggest issues were discussed at a meeting on 12 May, which was attended by 165 of the 250 students who live in the building.

Issue 1: temperature in rooms

A number of students complained that the second-floor bedrooms are too hot. Concerns were raised about lack of sleep and students finding it hard to study in their rooms. Air conditioning was suggested as a possible solution.

However, there is no budget left for installing air conditioning this academic year. Also, installation can only be carried out during holidays as students cannot be present in the building while the work takes place.

Issue 2: improving wheelchair access to Oak Café

It was noted that wheelchair users can only access Oak Café from the back and not the front entrance nearer the lifts. This makes access to the café difficult for wheelchair users. The university is looking to improve its wheelchair access in general by installing ramps in key areas and work can take place during term time with no issues for staff or students.

  • Conclusion and recommendations

Taking the factors mentioned into account, August would be the best time for the installation of air conditioning. Until then, the university could consider supplying fans to each second-floor room so students can sleep and study comfortably.

The front of the café is recommended as an ideal place to install a wheelchair ramp. This work can take place immediately and should be a priority.

  • Start with the aim of the report and say where the information comes from.
  • The problem(s) (Give each issue a separate section)
  • Assume the person reading the report has asked you to write it and needs only a brief introduction to the situation.
  • Use an impersonal, formal style.
  • Use the passive to keep the focus off individual people: Concerns were raised about ... . .. was suggested ...
  • You should also use objective language for recommendations and conclusions: ... would be the best … the university could consider ... ... is recommended ...

Have you ever had to write a report? What for?

Language level

Improvements in the ordering process

Introduction This report aims to describe the main problems in the ordering process at the cafe and discuss possible solutions. The two most significant issues were discussed at the meeting last day, which was participated by members of the order team and managers.

Issue 1: Missing dishes Customers frequently complain about missing or incorrect dishes being delivered. Concerns were raised about customer dissatisfaction and the return ratio. The possible solution is that the order staff should create and pass bills to the chef. The chef then gives them to the waiter to double-check before taking them to the diner.

However, this solution must be approved by the owner before applying in the cafe and carrying out 1-month trial.

Issue 2: There are no tools for customer feedback The owner wants to know the customer experience in the cafe; however, there needs to be tools for that. Evaluation form was recommended as a possible solution. The order team and manager are responsible for making it.

Conclusion and recommendations Taking the factors mentioned into account, two weeks would be the ideal time to apply two solutions. After one month, the team will meet to review the solution's effectiveness.

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Maintenance for building B2 in Gize area This report aims to describe problems in our building B2 and discuss the possible solutions and maintenance work to take place. The two biggest issues were discussed at the neighbors' meeting in 15 April which was attended by 20 neighbors out of 35 who live in the building Issue 1: fixed the water leakage from the bathroom in floor 7th A number of neighbors complained about water leakage from some floors which affected the safety of the building, concerning about the safety arise. replacing the old pipes with the new ones was suggested as a possible solution. However, there is no budget for replacing the pipes this month and replacement can not take place duo to the working day and the presence of neighbors. Issue 2 : lift doors arm broking It was noted the doors of the lift sometimes don't close because of the arm which causes the lift to be hung on on some floors, this creates a lot of problems for the residents of the building and lets them take the stare instead of the lift. We suggest replacing the old broking arm with a new one during the holidays as many residents will be on vacation. Recommendation The maintenance of the lift should take place as soon as possible. Fixed water leakage needs time and budget and a special contractor so the process should start immediately

Have you ever had to write a report? What for? when I was a student at the university, I should have written a report on the progress of my thesis every other month. about what I am doing or what steps I have done successfully. also if something didn't live with my hopes, I would explain why the reasons are. Writing these reports was helpful for me because they would make me use my own efficiency in the best way. meanwhile, they would give me an opportunity to bring up my problems with my professor. because my professor wasn't on the hand always.

Improve quality Introduction This report aims to describe the most important problems in the university main building. On May 30, two important topics were discussed and attended by all maintenance personnel.

Issue 1: Upgrading computer lab equipment Concerns were raised because maintenance staff receive many complaints about the performance of the computers in the main building. It was suggested to buy new computers with current technology. However, the budget will be exceeded if the university purchases new computers, but purchase only specific upgraded parts was recommended.

Number 2: Expand the wellness area It was suggested to expand the wellness area in order to accommodate a larger number of students. This is necessary because students are disgusting because they don't have enough space to play and relax. The staff is looking to expand all areas, but actually the university can improve the wellness area.

Conclusion and Recommendations Taking the factors mentioned into account, better computer parts for labs should be purchased. Expanding the wellness area is the priority, requesting the necessary permission to work outside should be done soon, for now maintenance recommends working inside with small infrastructure changes.

Lack of teaching staff in the department Introduction: This report aims to describe a lack of teaching staff in the department and suggested solutions. This issue was discussed at a meeting on 12 June, which was attended by all of the students. Issue: The students wanted to study up-to-date courses and update the materials of the ongoing courses but the issue is there is no staffing to teach or update the courses. Conclusion and recommendations: The student suggested hiring new teachers or providing paid online courses from famous online course websites for free.

Improvements to Cool Learning Center Introduction This report aims to describe problems in Cool Learning Center and discuss possible solution. The two biggest issues were disscused at a meeting on 2nd of April, which was attended by the office staff and manager who work for Cool Learning Center.

Issue 1: insufficent space Even though the classrooms were intended for 10 students of class size, the number of students is increasing up to 15 at the moment so that the students cannot do the lessons very well due to the insufficent space. Consequently, the ventilation inside the room is not good.

Issue 2: improving bike rack It was noted that some students who come to class by bicycles parked their bikes in the sun where is not secured and the heat can disturb the bikes as well.

Conclusion and recomendations Classroom expansion should be taken into account the fact that large rooms are currently needed. Construction can be started at the beginning of Thingyan holiday.

The bike rack is recommended to do immediately since it is outside the class building and it should be a priority.

This report aims to describe problems in technical school and discuss possible solution to solve them. Issue 1: exams of end academic year will start soon and will be held in the main hall as regard the main hall has no sufficient air conditioning so the students will encounter to problems during their other hand there is no enough budget left for buying advanced and most powerful new airconditioning . Coclusion and recommendation: taking the factors mentioned in account it is recommended that shall school principal make a session with his assistants to survey of best way to supply enough budget for buying air conditioning for main hall

Improvements to Dental hospital. Introduction: This report aims to describe problems in Vaco dental hospital and discuss problems to solve them.

Issue 1: workers in hospital need overtime to work but unfortunately it was recognized that no one stays and works in overtime because all workers and doctors finished their work in the morning, hospital paid a huge amount of money monthly without any benefit for workers how stay for overtime.

Issue 2: There’s a massive problem in the appointment system which is there are a lot of patients who take an appointment without coming, so a lot of appointments aren’t used.

Conclusion and recommendations: For the first issue installing a machine for checking out who come and when they come it would be a great idea for the hospital. The recommendation for the second issue is banning people who take an appointment without using it that will make people more responsible about it.

Maintenance work in Plaza Hotel Introduction This report aims to describe the current situation in Hotel's kitchen and discuss possible maintenance work to solve them. Issue 1: extractor hood The personnel working there is complained about the main hood. Concerns were raised some months ago about the age of the hood that is no longer fully functional. A new one is suggested as a possible solution. Issue 2: freight elevator It was noted that the freight elevator, used to load/unload from/to the pantry of the hotel, sometimes crashes. Concerns are raised concerning the delay during the loading operations and, as consequence, the extension of working hours. Conclusion and recommendations Taking the factors mentioned into account, next week the Hotel board of directors is going to make a meeting for dealing with these topics. It'll be suggested to use the budget to buy and install a new hood, while, regarding the second issue, one solution that will be proposed is to use the smaller freight elevator placed in the left wing.

Actually It never occured to me to write a formal report until I come accross this English learning website. Things I've learned from here would surely benefit me in the long run. Thanks! I appreciate your work.

This report aims to describe problems in ParkVille Residence and discuss possible solutions. Concerns were discussed at Annual Resident's Association Forum on July 9. The Key Issues are Improper waste disposal and run-down facilities.

Issue 1: Improper waste disposal Number of Residence made a complaint about the garbage bin storage area which is located in a side wall between building 1 and 2. Complaints were raised about the unpleasant odor and uncontrollaby high number of pests. Proper waste management and relocation of garbage bin storage were suggested as a possible solutions.

Issue 2: Improving run-down facilities Concerns were raised about the faulty outdoor fitness equipment and the poor maintaince of swimming pool. This make access difficult for residents. Installation of new outdoor fitness equipment and proper swimming pool maintainance are suggested as an efficient solution. It was discussed during the meeting that the operational expenses will be added to residents monthly association dues and was agreed upon by majority of residents.

It is recommended, maintainace work should be carry out during the day. Swimming Pool Vicinity is an ideal place for residents to enjoy and relax. Maintainance can take place immediately and should be a priority and must be done before the start of Summer Holidays.

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Report Writing Support

Introduction: a video overview of report writing.

Section 1: Getting started

From the day you walk into university until the day you leave, there are many reports you'll have to write. As a student, these reports might be the bane of your life - but the truth is, you'll have to write them no matter where you go. From a simple work assessment report to the high-flying technical write-up, reports are a common form of workplace communication. You may have to write a report to a 'client' or an assessing manager. Report writing is an essential skill for professionals; master it now and writing reports won't have to be a pain. Here's where to start.

How do I consider the audience?

As you write, ask yourself:

  • Why have they asked for a report?
  • What do they need to know?
  • How will they use the report?

Throughout your study and future career you will write reports for people who have little or no background in the area of work your report covers. If this is your audience, then your report should be easy to understand. Define terms, offer some background knowledge and use relevant examples. For example, an environmental impact statement for a newspaper would be written in a style that best suits the non-technical reader.

On the other hand, if you are writing a technical report intended to be read by a team of engineers, you can assume a level of prior knowledge and use specialised technical language. Someone expert and knowledgeable in your own field will not necessarily look upon your work kindly if you write your report with a layperson in mind. 

How do I analyse my task?

Analysing your task is very important. If you haven't got a clear picture in your mind of where you want to go, planning the report is going to be difficult. So, here are some questions you should ask yourself:

  • Do you understand the type of report needed? (e.g. experimental report, design proposal, etc.)
  • Do you know how big your report needs to be?
  • Do you know what is required in the report?
  • Who is my audience ? (e.g. clients, lecturers, assessors, managers etc.)
  • What is the problem/question ?
  • What is the aim of the report?
  • What key points or issues need addressing?
  • What information do you need to collect?

Now that you've got these basic ideas in mind, how and where will you find the relevant information?  

How do I clarify my aim?

The aim of your report should be clear from the type of report needed. In an experimental report the aim is very different to that of a design report. For example:

Experimental Report

An experimental report aims to report on:

  • an experiment or research .
  • what was achieved during the course of the experiment.
  • what was concluded and how this compares with previous published results.

Technical design report

A Technical design report aims to:

  • solve a problem or;
  • recommend a design

What is the basic structure of a report?

Types of reports can vary greatly; they can range from an experimental report to an environmental impact statement. There is however, a basic structure common to most reports, irrespective of their type. 

Major components of a general report

  • In less than 200 words ... what was the problem, how was it investigated, what did you find out and what do your findings mean?

Table of Contents

  • A list of the major and minor sections of your report.


  • Set the scene; give some background information about the topic. State the aim/purpose of the investigation. Outline the body sections.
  • Organise the sections in a logical sequence: what you investigated, what you found, what interpretations and what judgements you made. Use short informative headings and subheadings.
  • What has been achieved and what is the significance of your findings and your discussion? Have your aims been successful or not?


  • What do you recommend as a course of action following your conclusion?
  • A list of all the sources you used.
  • Any information (graphs, charts, tables or other data) you used in your report but did not include in the body.

See next: Writing the report

Engineering & science.

  • Writing the report
  • Presenting the report
  • Technical writing
  • Writing lab reports
  • Honours thesis writing
  • Case study report in (engineering)
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writing reports for students

School Report Writing Tips I Wish I’d Known Earlier

Nothing will ever compare to that feeling of sheer joy when you find out you’re getting your first class, and then setting up your first ever classroom, and then walking into your first day of school. It reaffirms everything you’ve sacrificed to become a teacher; you’re filled with feelings of pride, and excitement, and mmm. Oh man, BFF, I’m getting emotional just thinking about it!

But then comes that sucker punch – that feeling of panic when reporting time rolls around. It has a way of sneaking up on you, of suddenly arriving on your doorstep and with it comes all those horror stories you’ve heard from other teachers about how hard and stressful writing student report comments will be.

There’s this term called ‘eat the frog,’ (maybe a little too visual in its description!) which is a productivity trick where you tackle that one item on your to-do list that you just have zero motivation or desire to do. That’s how I approached report writing for a long time – just ‘getting it done’ and hoping that I came out still resembling a human being on the other side, ha!

Chantelle sits holding a coffee, and writing in a notebook.

Reporting doesn’t have to be the bane of your existence! Keep reading for some tips on how to shift your school report writing mindset.

I picked up some effective report writing tips along the way that didn’t just make report writing tolerable, but actually enjoyable! It might not sound possible, but trust me friend – reports don’t have to always be your frog.

Write student report comments for parents, not other teachers

There’s something about writing reports that would always transport me back to my own school days, worrying about impressing the teacher and having to prove that I knew what I was talking about!

As much as documents like Improvement Plans and Lesson Plans do need to be written with your peers in mind – one of the most important school report writing tips I learned is that you’re writing for parents/carers!

Using teacher jargon and education department lingo are going to make it ten times harder for your students’ parents to actually understand how their child is progressing. Your feedback is super valuable for them, and keeping it simple is a way for you to build that rapport with the parent community at your school!

Stick to clear, easy to understand language that focusses on growth and development rather than getting too caught up in the curriculum.

Draw on past reports and use evidence for effective report writing

For end of year reports, it was such a lightbulb moment when realising these were effectively a sequel to those I’d written in the middle of the year! If that mid-year report was the last update your little learners’ parents received, it makes complete sense to pick up where you left off in the end of year report.

A binder titled ‘Math Assessment Data’ next to a student assessment checklist.

Keeping great records throughout the year will make things so much easier come reporting time!

Read through each student’s last report comments and pick out an area in which they’ve really grown in the time since. This will help to jog your memory and remember all the amazing ways that you’ve helped your students to progress this year!

Where you can, using any specific anecdotes or evidence also helps to make your reports more meaningful. Being able to refer to an example of how the student demonstrated a skill, worked towards a goal or improved their understanding also helps parents to understand their child’s progression!

A graphic for my ‘Acing Assessment’ bundle showing the different assessment covers and resources.

Do future you a favour, and prepare for report writing throughout the school year! The resources in my Acing Assessment Bundle have been designed to help set you up for effective report writing, by making it easy to keep track of students’ progress. Get your bundle here .

Avoid relying too heavily on other’s school report writing tips

Okay, I know what you’re thinking… “Chantelle, you’re literally giving me school report writing tips right now!” But hear me out! What I mean by this is just to be wary of those report comment banks that promise to cut down your reporting time by 90%, or those gurus on social media who give you all the report writing tips you need in 60 seconds or less.

I learned over the years that report writing is just as individual of an activity as teaching – and that’s totally okay! As long as you’re ticking all the boxes when it comes to the Achievement Standards and your school’s expectations? Both how you write your reports and what you say in them is completely up to you. Whether you want to tackle student report comments one by one, or you want to fill in the class-level comments in all the reports before going back and adding in the individual comments – there’s no right or wrong way to approach this, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, BFF!

You have worked *so* hard to get to where you are now, whether this is your first or fifth year teaching, and you’ve proven time and time again that you’re a capable and incredible person.

Chantelle sits at a computer, wearing a maroon cardigan and a white tshirt. She’s smiling at the camera, filled with positivity about completing reports!

You’ve got this, friend! I hope these tips come in handy as you tackle your next student reports. 

Looking for more assessment tips? I’ve got you covered, BFF! Check out some of my other blog posts for effective report writing below.

Assessment and Report Writing: 6 Tips to Help Teachers Prepare

Report Writing Must Haves

Got a lifesaving report writing tip of your own? Come tell all my BFFs in my Facebook Group !

School Report Writing Tips I Wish I’d Known Earlier - Miss Jacobs Little Learners

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