The purpose of a progress report is to provide a recap to all the work you have done on a project. It is for the benefit of you, and the person you are sending it to. You get to look back at what you’ve done so far, and what you can improve. You can analyze your progress from a vantage point you may not have considered when deep in work on it. Obviously, there is also the benefit that the person you are writing the progress report for gets to see your mind in action and how you perceive the work you have done so far.
One element that contributes to these goals is a list. A list is able to concisely show the reader a series of actions that were taken to achieve completion of the task. This also makes a progress report easy to read. But lists only provide certain info, sometimes other means are necessary.
Another thing that enhances a progress report is visuals. Visuals and images are paramount to a progress report because they allow for easier ways to view “progress” hence the name. For example, if I were talking about how I was only done with half of one section, and three fourths of another section, I could make a graph of this to visualize it. That way the professor has a clear picture of what progress I am making.