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Research Reporting

Language, Literature & Performing Arts
Course Code
CMNS 1218
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
This course is designed to provide students in the Print Futures Professional Writing Program with experience in producing client-based analytical research reports. Students will work through the typical production process: developing proposals, completing field-based and theoretical research tasks, collating data, organizing material, and ultimately producing a reader-based and purposeful document.
Course Content

1.  Reports: Theory and Practice

The student will

  1. examine the genre of reports
  2. examine the  rhetorical situation in this specialized writing task
  3. develop awareness of the stages of client-centred report production:

    • initial contact
    • proposals
    • progress reports
    • client-centred outlines
    • reader-based reports

  4.  develop awareness of the sub-textual level of report production:
    • social and cultural context (organizational culture)
    • inter-personal protocols
    • rhetorical strategies

2.  Time Management

The student will:

  1. develop an action plan
  2. structure activities to satisfy short and long term priorities
  3. establish a system for organizing workload
  4. meet production deadlines

3. Research Process   

The student will:

clearly establish audience, purpose, context

  1. clearly establish audience, purpose, context 
  2. identify major, minor, and irrelevant issues (scope)
  3. determine appropriate data base
  4. analyze appropriateness of data sources
  5. develop surveys, questionnaires, interview questions
  6. practise interviewing skills
  7. utilize appropriate secondary data sources:
    • reference texts,
    • libraries,
    • grey literature,
    • market research
  8. manage information in an ethical manner
  9. produce applicable related documents as necessary:
    • letters,
    • memos,
    • short reports
  10. produce an organizational culture analysis (essay)

4. Document Production

The student will:

  1. collect and organize source material in terms of issues
  2. prepare a client-centred report outline
  3. produce a proposal
  4. produce a progress report
  5. produce a coherent, reader-based report which fulfills its purpose
  6. produce an accompanying abstract (executive summary)
  7. make use of coherence and persuasive strategies as required
  8. revise the report for appropriateness of tone, structure, and content in relation to audience and purpose. 

5. Discourse Theory and Grammar: exercises from Vande Kopple.

Methods Of Instruction

This course will emphasize learning through doing.  Working individually, in pairs and in groups, students involve themselves in a variety of classroom activities (collaborating on assignments and exercises, revising and editing) and discussion during lectures.  These activities will enable them to develop familiarity with and proficiency in client-centred report production. 

Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be based on this general outline:

Proposal  15%
Report Genre Analysis    10%
Empirical Research Progress Report   15%
Theoretical Research Progress Report  10%
Organizational Culture Analysis    10%
Research Report 30%
Peer Review of Formal Report   10%
Learning Outcomes

Students will practise the researched report-writing tasks, and will apply the skills they were introduced to in the 100-level prerequisite courses: research skills and workplace writing strategies.  Students will also take responsibility for working independently through a complex, multi-faceted field-based research project requiring focus, organization and self-motivation.

Textbook Materials

Textbooks and Materials to be Purchased by Students

Anderson, Paul.  Technical Writing: A Reader-Centred Approach.  2nd ed.  Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich College Publishers, 1998.

Vande Kopple, William.  Clear and Coherent Prose.  Scott, Foresman and Company, 1989.

Research Reporting Readings (Course Ware Package).




No corequisite courses.


No equivalent courses.

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
Capilano University (CAPU) CAPU CMNS 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2016/12/31
Capilano University (CAPU) DOUG CMNS 1115 (3) & DOUG CMNS 1218 (3) = CAPU CMNS 220 (3) 2004/09/01 to 2017/12/31
Capilano University (CAPU) DOUG CMNS 1115 (3) & DOUG CMNS 1218 (3) = CAPU CMNS 220 (3) 2004/09/01 to 2017/12/31
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU CMNS 1140 (3) 2006/01/01 to 2016/12/31
Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) KPU ENTR 3500 (3) 2004/09/01 to 2005/12/31
Langara College (LANG) LANG CMNS 1XXX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2016/12/31
Simon Fraser University (SFU) DOUG CMNS 1218 (3) & DOUG PRFU 1102 (3) = SFU CMNS 261 (3) 2004/09/01 to 2016/12/31
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU ENGL 2XXX (3) 2010/09/01 to 2016/12/31
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU ENGL 2XX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2010/08/31
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) No credit 2005/05/01 to 2016/12/31
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) DOUG CMNS 1118 (3) & DOUG CMNS 1216 (3) & DOUG CMNS 1218 (3) = UBCV ARTS 1st (3) 2004/09/01 to 2016/12/31
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC ENGL 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2016/12/31
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV CMNS 250 (3) 2004/09/01 to 2010/04/30
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV CMNS 351 (3) 2010/05/01 to 2016/12/31
University of Victoria (UVIC) No credit 2004/09/01 to 2016/12/31

Course Offerings

Fall 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.