What are the Differences between Essay and Report Writing?

Most students do not realize the difference between an essay and a report. In fact, most students who feel stranded about this issue prefer to use the services of professional writing companies such as Dissertationexpert.org.

This is perfectly okay, but it wouldn’t hurt to know the differences between essay and report writing either way.

What Are The Differences Between Essay And Report Writing


The purpose of an essay is to discuss and answer an academic question. The answer should be based on existing scholarly research. However, the writer should rely on his/her deduction powers to introduce a fresh, personal perspective. It is okay to refer to other scholars’ research as long as you highlight these references. It is also okay to cite results from a practical research, but you also have to highlight the references.

The purpose of a report, on the other hand, is to present and analyze findings from a practical research. The main goal of a report is to investigate a certain concept. One of the key elements of any report is a hypothesis, which is a proposition meant to be investigated and answered in the report. And, unlike essays that mostly involve discussing an academic issue, reports often come up with conclusions and make recommendations on how to handle a certain issue.

Most essays are academic, but reports don’t have to be. There are numerous kinds of reports touching on different fields, such as business.


Both essays and reports have some similarities when it comes to formatting. For instance, they both feature an introduction and conclusion, and the main content is wedged in-between. However, there are also some glaring differences.

Essays, for starters, are not subdivided into sections or sub-topics. After the introduction, the main body is mostly continuous. The different paragraphs are in prose and continuous in their presentation of ideas. The train of thought should remain unbroken throughout the essay. However, a long essay may be subdivided into a few subtopics.

Reports, on the other hand, feature a more rigid structure. The main body is divided into specific sections that are determined by the exact type of report. Typical sections include research, analysis, discussion, and more depending on the type and length of the report. Each section is independent of the other, but the thoughts and ideas are somewhat linked.


There are different angles from which to look at the content in reports and essays. As mentioned, essays are mostly academic, while reports can be academic or informal.

When it comes to the nature of the content, reports are mostly descriptive. This means that they ‘report’ events in a sequential manner with the content in each section contributing to the content in the next section. They can also include evaluations and recommendations.

Essays, on the other hand, are more flexible in the nature of the content. They can be discursive, descriptive, evaluative, and so much more depending on the nature of the question or topic. However, the content mostly involves the synthesis of a particular theory and does not include analysis or recommendations.       

Remember, essays and reports may share certain similarities, but confusing one for the other may get you penalized. You can find help with essays, reports, and any other type of academic paper from some of the leading academic help websites.  

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