The essay – the composition of short contents and free composition written in prose and expressing personal impressions, emotions and thoughts on a certain subject which don’t pretend on the defining interpretation. The author express especially the opinion about a certain subject and explains why he thinks quite so.
A report is a summary of the content or part of it, including the main factual information and conclusions necessary for the initial acquaintance with the document and determining the appropriateness of referring to it.
The essence of the report is a summary (with sufficient completeness) of the main content of the source. Writing a report is a process of analytical and synthetic processing of primary documents. Mostly scientific and technical literature is referenced, which contains new information.
The essay represents more free form of writing of philosophical work, than the report. Unlike the report, the author of the essay doesn’t apply for the exhaustive or standard interpretation of a subject. On the contrary, he shows own understanding of a key part of the problem, to reason the position, to convince the reader of its correctness. However, choosing such form of work, its author can’t forget that the essay always remains only to one of many “attempts” to solve this or that problem therefore can’t and shouldn’t apply for “the truth in final instance”.
Writing of the essay it is at the same time easier, and more complex work, than preparation of the report. Easier as from the author of the essay such deep study of a subject isn’t required as from the author of the report, acquaintance to the large volume of literature isn’t required. The form of the essay allows do without footnotes and execution of references that also facilitates work on competent execution of the text.
However, essay is more complex work. It assumes ability and desire to think, form own position on rather difficult question, to reason it. Besides, for writing of the essay some literary abilities, at least, are required for ability accurately and clearly to state the thoughts in writing.
In short, an essay is what the author feels, more based on his thoughts, interests, worldviews. In the essay, you can specify those who influenced the point of view. In the report, all theses are argued, examples and references are mandatory, there is a compulsory scheme of writing.