It is known that summary writing is an indispensable part of producing various types of academic works. Research papers, book reviews, annotated bibliographies, etc. often include this unit. However, it is necessary to remember that each synopsis has its peculiar features. Thus, a common summary differs from that included in a term paper, for example.
Information provided below will help you learn how to write a summary which is not a part of a certain academic paper. You will also find out how to identify the main components of an article written for the annotated bibliography.
It is worth mentioning that preparing summaries is not a piece of cake. Learners have to possess great skills in order to succeed in completing such an assignment. What are these skills?
- You should clearly understand what the author’s message is.
- It is important to get the key point of the article or book you are analyzing. Draw your attention to its structure and presented arguments that justify the main idea.
- You have to decide which facts are of utmost importance and which ones are not worth considering. Your essay should not contain useless information.
- Shorten the content. While writing a summary, you have to express the author’s ideas in a few sentences. It does not matter that the author produced the material on several pages.
Summaries of superior quality present the paper’s aim, its thesis statement, accurate data, and a conclusion. The concluding paragraph shows the results of research.
The Kinds of Summaries
In order to know how to write a good summary, it is necessary to distinguish between its types. Therefore, students should take the following into account.
- The so-called outline method: It is really good to use this approach for short pieces of writing. At first, it is made in the form of a plan. Then it is transformed into plain text. It should start with the thesis. It should also contain headings and subheadings. The former name the sections of the paper and the latter present the items included in each section.
- Unit method: It is rather helpful to use it when it goes about large articles. Each unit of the academic work has to be summarized in a few sentences. Remember that you should use transition words to join your thoughts and provide a smooth flow of information.
When you are supposed to make an essay summary of a particular article, follow detailed instructions given below:
Read the assigned article:
- Read the work attentively and underline the items you consider to be essential.
- Try to find the phrase that fully illustrates the argument of the whole piece of writing.
- Do not forget to pay attention to its structure.
- Write simple language. Do not use ambiguous words.
Start writing your summary essay:
- You have to include the author’s name, the title of the discussed article and its subject in the first sentence of your paper.
- Make sure that you have written a great thesis. Is there anything you have forgotten to mention? Do not forget that you have to write the thesis in your own words.
- After each section, you have to write some sentences that will sum it up.
- Remember that you are to put forward the arguments offered by the author to develop the main idea.
- The last sentence summarizes the conclusion which the author arrives at.
Make a revision of your work:
- Make sure that your summary writing expresses the ideas of the article.
- Avoid stating your opinion about the article. You should remember that your paper is just a description of a specific matter.
- Do not forget that your essay has to contain the conclusion and arguments provided by the author.
You do not have to share your viewpoint on the discussed material in your work. The following tips will help you:
- Check whether you have written a good thesis.
- You may put minor details in parentheses.
- Look how the author summarizes the article.