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Overview of the report. This report compares blood glucose monitoring systems and recommends one. The standard point-by-point approach is used here to determine the overall best choice.
Introduction. The first sentence indirectly indicates the topic and purpose of the report: choosing the best blood glucose monitoring system.
The rather large middle section of the introduction provides some background. in general, you want to keep the introduction rather short and maintain a sharp focus on the purpose and contents of the report. This writer might have considered moving this background material to one of the next sections, for example, the product-descriptions section.
The introduction ends with discussion of the criteria to be used in the comparison and recommendation process. Notice that the list of criteria also acts as an overview of the comparison section: the comparison sections are presented in the same order.
Product descriptions. This report includes some basic description of each of the options. In some recommendation reports, you'll sense that this sort of description is necessary before the comparisons begin. For certain kinds of comparisons, readers need first to be familiarized with the options being compared.
Second-level headings. This report has six second-level headings for the major sections: introduction, product descriptions, comparisons, summary, recommendations, and sources. Notice that a heading is not used for the introduction: for a relatively short document like this one, we can assume that the paragraph just after the title is—or ought to be—introductory in nature.
Third-level headings. In this report, third-level headings are used to mark each of the products in the product description section and to mark each of the five individual point comparisons. Notice that the overview of the points of comparison is presented between the comparison heading and the ease-of-use heading.
Individual conclusions. In typical recommendation reports, you expect each comparison section to state a conclusion as to which option is best in terms of that point of comparison. Notice, however, that the ease-of-use section does not clearly state which blood glucose monitoring system is better. However, the section on operation speed does provide a strong conclusion as to which product is the fastest.
Summary. The summary provides a list of the key primary conclusions reached in the body of the report. But typically recommendation reports need to state secondary conclusions, which balance conflicting primary conclusions. In this report, one option has the best features and quality but is also the most expensive. One or more secondary conclusions must be used to explain whether cost or quality is preferred and why. And the list of conclusions must end with a final conclusion, which states which option is the best choice.
Summary table. This report is provides a summary table that re-presents the key comparative information from the preceding sections. This gives readers a way to get the key points at a glance or to review them quickly.
Recommendation section. This recommendation section provides the rationale for choosing the option it does.
Information sources. At the end of the report, we have the list of information sources. This report uses the number system in which the sources are numbered, and these numbers are used along with page references in the body of the report to indicate the source of borrowed information.
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