type of information verb form
(tense or commonly occurring verbs)
giving background details present tense The industry is already well known for its efforts to improve the eco-efficiency of its processes 
describing the research activity simple past tense, present perfect tense The study focused on 2 main areas

The framework for life cycle analysis has been developed

describing the methods

simple past tense (active or passive)

We carried out a series of field tests

A large number of samples were tested for fracturing

reporting results simple past tense Results indicated that the problem is even more serious than previously predicted

The third model proved to be more durable than the other four

stating conclusions

present tense

verbs indicating tentativeness :

  • is possible

  • is likely

  • appears

  • seems

  • might

modal auxiliary verbs

  • can

  • may

  • could

  • might

This indicates that there are, in fact, several factors contributing to the decrease

It appears that the incidence of human error cannot be eliminated at any stage


There might be a need for revising the list of criteria within the next 5-10 years




(pages by Charles Darling at Capital Community College)

click here to go back to the VERBS IN TECHNICAL REPORTS menu 


S.McAnsh 2002