When writing a Report, such as a Research Report, or Term Paper; Length always matters.

The assignment for the report usually has a page length or number requirement. If the professor has spent a lot of time doing report grading and reviewing, the they might also want to put a word cap, or page cap. Regardless you should always try to go past the minimum word or page requirement. The middle ground is a good place to stand, it let’s you get your point across, but doesn’t run on, and doesn’t make you look like you’re trying to scrape by on the bare minimum.

Keeping your papers longer provides a better understanding of your topic, and shows that your research was thorough and organized. Although you may not want to write a lot, and the minimum seems very appealing, consider how it would look to the professor. The closer the paper is to the minimum, the more likely it’s going to look like you wanted to do less work. Alternatively you can get the information needed in less space, but having the extra room is nice for the reader. It helps them be able to focus on the points you are making, while having the breathing room for you to explain your points easier.

The other side to it is writing too much. The professor might put a word or page cap on the report because they know that many people would want to write more than necessary for such report. They want to keep everything nice and neat, and easy to follow along without having to read for hours. If you have a lot to say, be sure to organize it in a way that is simple and precise. Rambling can make your paragraphs run on for a lot longer than needed, and it looks sloppy. The research paper doesn’t have to be a dissertation for a PhD, nor is it a short story. The perfect length is in the middle; a page or two beyond the requirement and a few hundred words over it.

The happy medium will not only make your professor happy, but will give you ample room to express what you need to get your point across and support it. The more often you exceed the minimum requirements, the more information you will learn and it will be easier to convey that.

Be sure to go the extra mile, but make sure it isn’t too far.