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How To Write A Summary - A Beginner’s Guide & Example

How To Write A Summary - A Beginner’s Guide & Example

So, you want to learn how to write a summary.

Maybe it’s your school or college assignment or maybe it is for your work. Whatever your reason is, learn the easiest way to crack this task.

Writing a summary demonstrates that you have clearly understood the text and now you can communicate that understanding to your readers.

However, summary writing is not an easy task. In fact, it is quite a difficult academic skill to learn. As with any new skill, especially for writing, students explicitly need to learn this skill.

If you want to learn summary writing, work through this blog and understand what are the steps required for writing a perfect summary.

1. What Is Summary Writing?

A summary is the condensed version of an original text. It is about identifying the most important text and restating it into your own words. If you know a subject, you will be able to summarize it. If you can not summarize a subject, it clearly means you have not learned it well.

A great way to process information is to write a summary of the text that you have read. If you are writing a summary for your school, the best approach to this task is to review the piece a number of times that you are analyzing.

If you are writing a summary for the first time, there are several questions that might stick to your mind such as:

  • How long should a summary be?
  • How to write a summary of an article?
  • How many sentences are in a summary?
  • What is one-page summary?
  • What is the sentence summary?
  • What should a summary include? Etc.

Keep reading the blog until the end to know the answers to the above questions.

2. How To Write A Summary

For writing a perfect summary, you need to come up with the right balance covering the important points as well as supporting points and rewriting it effectively. Let's delve into the steps of writing an appropriate summary.

2.1 Read The Original Piece

The first and most important step to a well-crafted and a good summary is to read the original text. Focus on reading the text at least 2 times. Do not take notes at this point. The goal here is to become familiar with the text and understand the author's writing style and tone.

Reading the text before the writing process will help you grasp the main idea of the work without going into specific details.

2.2 Understand The Main Idea

Once you are done reading the original text, take time and try to understand what you have read. Identify the central point of the text and understand how the author has written the sequence of events. Keep in mind 5Ws (what, who, when, why, and where) of the story to identify the main elements in the text.

2.3 Reread And Take Notes

Now comes the stage of active reading. Here, you will have to read the story once again and note down the major points to include in your summary. Highlight the topic sentences, plot points, important quotes, and major events. Also, note down the points that you find difficult to understand.

2.4 Organize Your Notes

After reading and taking notes, it is time to organize them. Take your time and find a way to organize the notes as it will become a reference when you begin the actual writing process. Don't forget to elaborate on the noted information and clarify any point difficult to understand.

2.5 Craft A Thesis Statement

The important factor to a great summary is to develop a good thesis statement. It is a one-sentence claim often written in the introductory paragraph to demonstrate your understanding of the original text. The thesis is important to include especially if you are writing a book summary. It is important to identify the main idea of the text for writing a thesis statement that will highlight the main argument.

2.6 Write A Short Paragraph Summary

Now the thesis statement can be used as the first sentence of your summary and the other supporting points will go into the body paragraphs. Don't forget to include some transition words to maintain the effective flow of information in your summary.

Make sure your summary includes all the major supporting ideas into a final version that should be complete and coherent throughout.

2.7 Revise Your Summary

Once you are done with the writing, it is important to edit your work. Reread your summary a number of times make changes along the way. You can also ask someone else to read your work and provide you feedback. Make changes in your summary according to the provided feedback to come up with an effective piece of writing.

3. Summary Writing Tips

To come with a great summary, here are some important tips from experts that you can keep in mind.

  • The length of a summary can range from two sentences to even several pages. In any case, write complete sentences to describe the main points of the author.
  • To summarize the main argument of the author, use the present tense.
  • Do not include information that is not in the original text. Also do not include your own opinion or ideas.
  • It is important to refer to several source material especially, for research summaries. So, information can be considered to present and explain the main idea to a number of references discussing the same subject.
  • If you are using the author's original words, don't forget to put quotation marks to show that the quoted information does not belong to you.

3.1 Summary Example

If you have been assigned to write a summary and you have no idea where to start. Follow the above guidelines as well as a summary example from an expert writer below to understand the whole summary writing process better.

Summary Example (PDF)

Writing a summary has its challenges but becoming familiar with its structure, writing techniques, and following the recommending guidelines will help you smoothly go through it. Still, if you need help, better get help online from our writing service.

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