A free, comprehensive, peer-reviewed, award-winning Open Text for students and faculty in college-level courses that require writing and research.

Memos, Proposals & Reports

Functions and Audience

Short for “memorandum,” a memo is a type of document used to communicate with others in the same organization. Memos (or memoranda) are typically used for fairly short messages of one page or less, but informal reports of several pages may also employ memo format.

Format

Memos are distinguished by a header that includes DATE, TO, FROM, and SUBJECT lines. Other lines, such as CC or BCC, may be added as needed. An RE (“Reference”) line may be used instead of SUBJECT, but this use is becoming rarer as “RE” is often mistaken as “Reply” because of its use in email.

Learning Outcomes

  • Apply and adapt professional and technical writing conventions, including genre, tone, and style for particular writing situations.
  • Identify professional and technical genres, organization strategies, and appropriate tone and style
  • Analyze audience while creating various professional/technical documents with a sophisticated awareness of audience as a reader and writer
  • Identify some habits of successful proposal writers
  • Analyze how and why audience awareness is a key component for successful writers

Learn how to improve your problem-solving and persuasive skills. Employ your writing and reasoning skills to make a difference in the world. View samples and write a proposal to conduct research, develop a Web site, solve a problem, or provide a service. Proposals are persuasive texts that articulate ways to solve a problem, conduct needed research, or provide a service.

Proposals may attempt to persuade readers to act or they may seek funding. Writers of proposals support claims with reasoning, library and Internet research, and original research, including questionnaires, interviews, and ethnographers.

You may wish to review the other parts of this webtext including:

Title Page

The title page provides the audience with the:

  • Name of the report

You may wish to review the other parts of this webtext including:

Introduction

The body of a formal report begins with an introduction. The introduction sets the stage for the report, clarifies what need(s) motivated it, and orients the reader to its structure.

You may wish to review the other parts of this webtext including:

Conclusions and Recommendations

The conclusions and recommendations section conveys the key results from the analysis in the discussion of findings section. Up to this point, readers have carefully reviewed the data in the report; they are now logically prepared to read the report’s conclusions and recommendations.

Functions and Audience

Short for “memorandum,” a memo is a type of document used to communicate with others in the same organization.  Memos (or memoranda) are typically used for fairly short messages of one page or less, but informal reports of several pages may also employ memo format.

Format

Memos are distinguished by a header that includes DATE, TO, FROM, and SUBJECT lines.  Other lines, such as CC or BCC, may be added as needed.  An RE (“Reference”) line may be used instead of SUBJECT, but this use is becoming rarer as “RE” is often mistaken as “Reply” because of its use in email.