An important difference between essays and reports is that while essays are written in a single narrative voice from beginning to end, reports are written in sections which may use different styles of writing, depending on the purpose of the section. There are also conventions for when you should use different tenses.
Make sure that your work is grammatically correct, well punctuated and spelt correctly.
Different sections of your report will require different styles of writing e.g. your Methods and Results sections will be factual and descriptive, your Introduction will be explanatory, and your Literature Survey and Discussion sections will be discursive and analytical.
Descriptive writing - gives a detailed account of the characteristics of things.
Discursive writing - investigates things by reasoning or making a reasoned examination.
Factual writing - states the facts of the case exactly as they are, without embellishment.
Analytical writing - examines complex things to discover how they work.
Explanatory writing - makes things clear and gives the reasons for them.
There are also conventions for when you should use different tenses. The general rules are:
So you might write:
‘Smith (2005) argues that the precise dimensions of this variable are not crucial. However, our experiment showed wide variations in results when the variable was altered even slightly. We conclude that the correct choice of dimensions is a significant factor in achieving success with this procedure.’