Suggested course level
Lower level undergraduate course
- Students understand how each part of a recommendation report stands on its own.
- Students will be better prepared to write their own reports.
- Several copies of the handout
- Prizes (optional)
- Print off enough copies of the handout single-spaced so that you can put students in groups of 4-5. (Note: this report is a simple recommendation report, but depending on the level of the class and your assignment focus you could easily adapt it by adding an executive summary, abstract, etc).
- Cut the reports up so that each paragraph/bullet point/heading is on a separate strip of paper.
- Put each cut-up report in a large envelope and shake up the pieces. You should have one cut-up report per group.
- After explaining the parts of the report, tell students that they will be tasked with reassembling the report. I usually allow students to use any handouts/ textbook/ slides/ notes that they want.
- When a group is done, check their work. I usually tell them which parts are correct and which aren’t. (You may want to print of an intact copy of the report to make it easy to check their work).
Debrief questions / activities
- What was the hardest part of this activity?
- How did you decide how to arrange the report?
- Did you encounter the same information twice?
- Why do you think the author chose to repeat that information?
- I also often get students to debrief by copying the headings into a notebook and then listing one piece of information they’d include in that part in their own report.
- Give prizes to the first team to finish.