Thursday, November 24, 2016

Field Visit Report Guideline

Field trips provide opportunities to students to observe study and explore the organization or site to get a down to earth understanding of material learned in the classroom. Students are expected to submit a field trip report after the field report and present it in group. The group member will be allocated accordingly and each group member needs to contribute and present the report.

Before Field Trip

Students need be aware about certain things visiting the site/organization. Get information about the site/organization before hand from secondary sources like books and internet.

During Field Trip

Clarify the purpose of the field trip and subsequent report with your lecturer and read any handouts and preliminary articles or textbook chapters before the actual trip. This helps to alert you to major theoretical frameworks, or important observations before you go. You will find it very hard to write a good report if you omitted to collect critical data in the field, so waiting to think about the aims, types of observations and possible implications till after the trip is too late. If it is to be a group report, try to organize your group beforehand so as to plan efficient data collection in the field. For example, one person to take photographs, one to make sketch maps, two to take notes from talks, etc.

Identifying the main issue

Ask yourself what the lecturer setting the course hopes that you will get out of the field trip. What major theories, methodology, techniques, and or practical knowledge are being tested or illustrated? Your report should relate your field observations to the main issues dealt with in the course as a whole. If you are required to focus on only one aspect of the course in your final report, although many are covered in the trip, try to identify two or three possible focuses before you go, so you can predict what kind of information you should be collecting, and do some pre-reading on those areas.

For example, you can relate your topic with topics you have studied earlier like HRM, Finance, Accounting, POM, etc. You can ask about their organization structure (POM), staffing (HRM), capital structure (Finance), Accounting Method used (Accounting) and so on. If you find confusion feel free to ask your supervisor.

Taking notes in the field

This can be difficult, so make sure that you have a clipboard; lots of paper (some sheets partly formatted beforehand if you know the kind of data you have to collect); some 3mm square graph paper to help sketching, graphing or mapping; multiple pens and pencils, including colored pencils; rubber; sharpener; folder for completed sheets; and plastic bag to put papers in if it is raining. You may find a camera or use your Smartphone useful and write corresponding notes on what you photographed, where it was and why it was important. Apart from taking photos or making measurements, focus on looking and listening, and add to notes between stops, or collaborate with a friend to make sure you get all the information. Record place names, time and date, and names and titles (job positions) of speakers (all accurately spelt). Use labeled sketches and plans to record spatial and visual information, noting proportions and approximate sizes of structures or map scales alongside. Remember to label tables with column and row headings and graphs with axes and titles, and to include the unit with all measurements.

Report format

The field work can be written up in the introduction-activities done/results-conclusion format.


The introduction should set out the purpose of the field work and usually containing sub-sections which give relevant background information (location of area, geology, topography, recent history etc). It will also be necessary to review relevant literature on the topic. Try to incorporate field report objective and particular methods used to collect the data. The next, chapters first chapter should be followed by presentation of the data and then conclusion and lesson learnt. For trips involving many locations, it may be easiest to organize the background information, data, and interpretation by site, but then draw all the sites together in a general discussion at the end. Do whichever involves least repetition of information and makes the report easiest for the reader to understand and follow. Use descriptive subheadings to make the information easy to find.

Data presentation

Besides the usual tables and graphs, data may include photos, diagrams, sketches, maps, or interviews. To make a professional-looking job of your final report (and allow easier editing) you may wish to learn how to use computer-based graphing or drawing applications. However, neat hand-drawn diagrams are usually acceptable. In either case make sure you provide all the relevant information – full descriptive titles, scales, units of measurement, keys to colors and shading, labels, and acknowledgment if the figure is based on a published source.

Conclusions and Lesson Learnt

Depending on the purpose and format of your report, you may have a separate conclusions section to summarize the major findings.

Field Report Format

Preliminary section:

  • Title page
  • Acknowledgements
  • Table of contents (with reasonable details)
  • List of tables and figures
  • Executive summary (1/2 to 1 page)

Main body of the report:

Chapter 1: Introduction 
Background (with brief literature review indicating the importance 
Objective of the study (Major & specific: 3 to 5) The major objective of the study is to learn about organization setting at its natural state. The specific objectives are as follows: Methodology (Data collection procedure and time)

Chapter 2: Analysis of Activities Done

This is important part of your field report. In this chapter, you have to write all the activities you have done in the organization during the field report.

Chapter 3: Summary and conclusions

·     Summary of findings

(Summary of Chap. 1: Gen. Bkgd:1 para; Objectives: 1 para; Methodology: 1 para Chap. 2: Based on the analysis of data, the major findings are summarized as under: minimum 10 findings)

·    Conclusion (Only one or two para stating: The major conclusion of this study is …The study also concludes that …)

Supplementary section

·    Bibliography (Use APA format for citation and referencing)

·    Books

·    Newspapers

·    Published documents

·    Unpublished documents
- Appendix (Include raw data, questionnaire, interview schedule)