Keep these facts in mind when considering your report:
- Somewhere in the report you need to include an overview of the main trends / information being shown.
- You need to clearly show the examiner that your report is finished to make sure it doesn’t look as though you simply ran out of time.
Here are some recommendations for what to do or avoid when writing your ‘end statement’ for Task 1 (Academic).
DON’T: Use ‘In conclusion’. ‘In conclusion’ is another way of saying ‘after considering the facts and the opinions expressed, this is my overall point of view’. The problem is that in Task 1 Academic you are NOT presenting opinions, nor are you required to show a personal point of view. You are only supposed to transfer the information given in the graph / chart / table /diagram, not provide any personal insight or point of view.
DO: Use expressions like ‘Overall’ or ‘To sum up’. These expressions do not imply any personal point of view, but they indicate to the examiner that this is clearly the end of your report. You can also use more direct phrases such as ‘This ends the report….’ (this must be followed by some additional information relating to the Task – see the examples below).
DON’T: Add a personal point of view. Ending your Task with a reason or explanation not given in the Task is definitely something to avoid. For example, if the Task was about income earned by different occupations, with nurses earning less than bank managers, DO NOT say something like ‘Overall, it is clear that nurses earn less than those managing banks, which seems unfair as nurses perform a more essential duty than those in the finance field.’
DO: Present an overview of the main points. For example, if the graph referred to sales and 2012 was a good year, but since then sales have fallen, you could say ‘To sum up, 2012 saw a peak in sales, followed by a gradual decline thereafter’. The most common problem with ending with an overview is that you may have already stated this in the body of the report. Don;t panic – you can repeat the information, just try to do so using different vocabulary.
DON’T: Write ‘The end’. Hopefully it should be clear why you shouldn’t simply finish your report with ‘The end’ -this is not an old movie and you’re not being assessed on whether you would be a good movie director! You need to demonstrate a better level of language ability than writing to simple words.
Examples of good ‘end statements’ for Task 1 Academic:
- ‘To sum up, it can be seen that sales were at their highest in 2012 and have fallen since that date’
- ‘Overall, it can be seen that nurses had the longest working hours of all occupations given in the table’.
- ‘This ends the report on the data provided in the chart, which clearly illustrates that studying in New Zealand and Australia are the least expensive options for international students.’