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How to Write a Summary for a Research Paper

Author: I. Lee
Published on: Jun 01, 2023
Updated on: Jul 26, 2023
Table of content
  • Why do you need a summary
  • How to start a summary
  • Step by step guide
  • Summary checklist

How to Write a Summary for a Research Paper
Have you written a high-quality research paper and can’t come up with a summary for it?

The summary helps you highlight the main points of the study and the reader to understand how your work will be interesting to them without reading the entire text of the study. The summary is a crucial part of the paper, but there is no single standard for writing it. The main thing is that this part of the text reflects the essence of your work and helps the reader understand what it is about.

Next, you’ll read how to write a summary so that your professor will love it.

Why do you need to write a summary of a research paper?

When you write a research paper, it is essential to include a summary that effectively communicates the main points of your work. A summary is a condensed document version, providing readers with a quick overview of the research. The purpose of a summary is to help readers understand the key findings and conclusions of the study without having to read the entire paper.

By including a well-written summary, college students can make the research more accessible and engaging for a wider audience. A clear and concise summary is essential to any research paper, whether you are writing a thesis, dissertation, or academic article.

The main task of the summary is to introduce the content of the work and highlight essential points. Therefore, in this part of the paper, there should not be anything that is not in the main text of the work. You can keep it as short as a few sentences or a summary paragraph. The main thing is to show the essence of the research paper and briefly describe the main points.

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When do you need to write a research paper summary?

When writing a research paper, summarizing your findings is an essential step. A research paper summary is a brief overview of your entire paper, providing readers with a clear understanding of your research and its significance. It is a condensed version of your research paper highlighting key points, research methods, results, and conclusions.

  • Writing a research paper summary is crucial because it allows you to present a concise overview of your research to readers who need time or expertise to read the entire paper.
  • A research paper summary can help you organize your thoughts and refine your research question, leading to a comprehensive answer.
  • When you write a research paper summary, you make an essential step in the research process that can help you to be more effective and communicate your research findings.

Students who have never written a summary make one common mistake. They begin writing their paper with this part of the work. However, this is wrong because the main goal of the summary is to summarize a research paper and highlight the main ideas of your paper.

Therefore, writing it at the end of the paper-creating process is best. After all the studies are carried out, the conclusions are written in the main part.

How to start a summary if you have no ideas?

Since there is no single structure for the summary, there are no words to start writing this part of the paper. Nevertheless, if you do not know how to start a summary, it is worth revising the text of your research paper.

  • When summarizing a research paper, it’s crucial to begin by identifying the primary points of the study.
  • Start reading through the abstract and introduction and quickly scanning the results and conclusion sections.
  • After pinpointing the key takeaways, you need to include in a summary information that accurately reflects the main findings of the research.
  • Next, choose all the most basic and write down the abstracts logically.
  • After, see what thought you could start your summary with.

It’s also essential to avoid injecting personal opinions or interpretations into the outline, as the objective is to present an unbiased and factual account of the study’s results.

How to write a good summary: step by step guide

Now let’s look at how to write a practical summary in just eight steps.

Step 1. Read the text of your work.

Before writing a summary, you must remember everything you wrote on paper. Take notes and capture all the main ideas. Write down your thoughts, main research points, and results.

Step 2. Structure your notes.

Review all the reminders you have taken and structure them. Think about what to say first and what not to say at all. Try to begin a summary with the main idea.

Step 3. Write the main part of the summary.

Tell us about the main idea of the study and what results you got. Build on the notes you made during the first step. Be specific, and add only a little information. Keep the text short but accurately reflect the essence of the paper.

Step 4. Add a research objective.

After you have written the summary’s main text, add the study’s purpose to the paper. Briefly describe each paper’s thesis and why you did the research.

Step 5. Add keywords.

Review the summary text again and add keywords from your research. Use the most common ones that best reflect the essence of the task.

Step 6. Briefly describe the findings.

Another essential part of the summary is the conclusions. They help the reader quickly understand what you have accomplished by researching. Again, do not write all your ideas. Instead, choose a few key ones.

Step 7. Remove all unnecessary information.

Review your summary and consider how important each sentence in the document is. If the document’s essence and understanding do not change without it, delete it.

Step 8. Edit the summary.

Ensure the written text meets the citation standards you need and does not contain errors or typos. After writing, take a break and read what you wrote again. You will most likely find some insidious bugs there.

Don’t be afraid to rephrase your thoughts while creating the summary. It will help you avoid accusations of plagiarism and improve the quality of your paper. If you still don’t understand how to do this part, Google “research paper summary example,” and you will find some templates to follow. But don’t copy it!

Summary writing checklist

After writing the summary, use this checklist to ensure you get everything important.

  1. Understand the main idea: Before starting to write an executive summary for a research paper, ensure you understand the main idea of the text you are summarizing. It will help you to focus on the most critical points.
  2. Identify the key points: Once you have understood the main idea, identify the key points that support it. These are the essential pieces of information that should be included in a summary.
  3. Use your own words: When writing a summary, it is essential to use your own words to convey the information. Avoid simply copying and pasting sentences from the original text.
  4. Be concise: Summaries should be brief and to the point. Avoid including unnecessary details or information irrelevant to the main idea.
  5. Check for accuracy: Before submitting your summary, ensure it accurately reflects the original text’s main idea and key points. Also, check for any errors or omissions

By following this summary writing checklist, you can create concise and accurate summaries that effectively convey the main ideas of the original text!

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