Research Reports in Psychology and the Behavioural Sciences

Research reports are sometimes called empirical reports, laboratory reports, lab reports, or experimental reports. Regardless of their name, they aim to give a concise description of a piece of empirical research. This will include giving a background to the research problem, stating hypotheses, describing who the participants were, outlining how the data was collected, showing what results were found, and discussing the findings. The research could consist of an experiment, survey, case study, observations, or other means of data collection.

Many students like how research reports have a fairly fixed structure and clear guidelines on what information goes in what section. However, other students find some parts challenging, such as writing up the results. At various stages in your studies, you will need to write a research report as a course assignment. In some cases, you will need to write the whole report. In others, you may be asked to focus on a few specific sections. Use the information on this page and elsewhere on this site to learn how to succeed with your research report.

Below are links to how to structure your report but also the sub-headings that you will need to use. See each link for more information about what each section should contain: