Sample: Summary Mini-Lesson

Dr. R: Let’s talk about summary. Based on the APA homework and the diagnostic rough drafts, it’s pretty clear some folks are still having difficulties discerning between summary and paraphrase. The distinction between these two is incredibly important to grasp, as your summary in your Essay 1 must be clear and concise. Note that you should be able to summarize the main argument claims of your chosen article in a single paragraph. OK, so what is a summary?

When we talk about summaries, we are usually talking about the summary of the main ideas of an entire work (although, if we’re focusing on a specific chapter or article in a larger work, we’d then be summarizing that one major component. For instance, most of us are summarizing individual articles, not the entire issue of a magazine or journal). Summary is used to “state the major ideas of an entire source or part of a source [see above] in your own words” (Faigley, 2010, p. 20). Note that the summaries are significantly shorter than the source.

Most academic guides recommend that a summary be no longer than ? the length of the original source. In other words, if you have a four page article and your summary is two pages long, that’s not an effective summary. Faigley even mentions that summaries are often “a paragraph or perhaps even a sentence” (emphasis mine] (2010, p. 631). Note the key ideas in the section above—summaries are short and they are in your own words. They only focus on the “main points, not most of the examples or supporting materials” (Faigley, 2010, p. 20).

To put this in layman’s terms for you as you check your summary work, note that this means that words like “uses examples” or “uses statistics” or “Smith discusses a man in Ireland who” are not summary appropriate—those are areas where you are actually paraphrasing supporting data/details, not summarizing the author’s main ideas. How are paraphrase and summary different? First, we tend to paraphrase specific examples or sentences. A paraphrase of a statement is often used to help clarify the ideas in that one statement, rather than to give an overview of an entire work.

We most often use paraphrase after we’ve quoted a work—you use that paraphrasing to help situate and show connection between the quoted material and your own ideas, for instance. As Faigley notes, “[w]hen you paraphrase, you represent the idea of the source in your own words at about the same length as the original” (emphasis mine] (Faigley, 2010, p. 631). Note that the main distinctions between summary and paraphrase are the length and the purpose of the tasks. Paraphrase is all about explaining a specific single idea at about the same length while summary is an overview of the entire piece that is much shorter.

What are some strategies for effective summary? One tip is to look at the overall document. Are there headings in the source? If so, those headings should directly relate to the main ideas—they are like little summary bullet points for the article, which means the author did some of the work for you! If there are not clearly marked sections of the source (which there often are not), you’re going to have to create some notes to work from. Read the article from start to finish, just reading. Then, on a second reading, read one paragraph at a time.

Once you read the paragraph over, write in the margins what the main point of that paragraph is. ( A print out of the article is great for this, but if you are paperless, you can copy the article into Word and type in your paragraph notes in a different color font or use the insert comment feature to annotate the source). Once you have created that list of notes—one phrase or sentence per paragraph—you can then take those and read through them. What main ideas are repeated that you can group together? What paragraphs seem to just list supporting examples and should be therefore excluded from your summary?

Use those notes to actually develop a single paragraph of summary—your summary should have no more sentences in it than the source has paragraphs (and in most cases, should have fewer). Common Summary Errors 1. Including supporting details or discussing data and examples from the source. 2. Adding evaluation or commentary to your own point of view. 3. Writing the summary by focusing on retelling the entire source—this is paraphrasing and can often be identified by the keywords in the long section that include things like “he begins” and “he goes on to discuss” and” having covered X, he moves on to Y. Those are phrases that indicate you’re including minor details an retelling everything, not summarizing. 4. Including quotations. 5. Incorporating additional sources (other than the thing you are summarizing). 6. Lacking signal phrasing that indicates key points. Your summary should set up the thesis/position of what is being summarized and follow with the main ideas or claims. Using signal phrasing like “Smith’s main argument is” and “one reason Smith argues X is” will help you make smoother transitions and remind the reader you are summarizing the main points only. Resources Columbia University School of Social Work (n. . ). Writing summaries. Writing Center Handouts. Retrieved from http://www. columbia. edu/cu/ssw/write/handouts/summary. html Faigley, L. (2010). Writing: A guide for college and beyond. New York: Longman. Student Development Centre (2009). Writing resources: Summary Writing. The University of Western Ontario. Retrieved from http://www. sdc. uwo. ca/writing/index. html? handouts [direct link: www. sdc. uwo. ca/writing/handouts/Summary%20Writing. pdf ] The Write Place (1997). Process for writing a summary. LEO: Literacy Education Online. Retrieved from http://leo. stcloudstate. edu/acadwrite/summary. html

Calculate the price
Make an order in advance and get the best price
Pages (550 words)
$0.00
*Price with a welcome 15% discount applied.
Pro tip: If you want to save more money and pay the lowest price, you need to set a more extended deadline.
We know how difficult it is to be a student these days. That's why our prices are one of the most affordable on the market, and there are no hidden fees.

Instead, we offer bonuses, discounts, and free services to make your experience outstanding.
How it works
Receive a 100% original paper that will pass Turnitin from a top essay writing service
step 1
Upload your instructions
Fill out the order form and provide paper details. You can even attach screenshots or add additional instructions later. If something is not clear or missing, the writer will contact you for clarification.
Pro service tips
How to get the most out of your experience with MyStudyWriters
One writer throughout the entire course
If you like the writer, you can hire them again. Just copy & paste their ID on the order form ("Preferred Writer's ID" field). This way, your vocabulary will be uniform, and the writer will be aware of your needs.
The same paper from different writers
You can order essay or any other work from two different writers to choose the best one or give another version to a friend. This can be done through the add-on "Same paper from another writer."
Copy of sources used by the writer
Our college essay writers work with ScienceDirect and other databases. They can send you articles or materials used in PDF or through screenshots. Just tick the "Copy of sources" field on the order form.
Testimonials
See why 20k+ students have chosen us as their sole writing assistance provider
Check out the latest reviews and opinions submitted by real customers worldwide and make an informed decision.
Human Resources Management (HRM)
excellent
Customer 452773, June 25th, 2023
English 101
great summery in terms of the time given. it lacks a bit of clarity but otherwise perfect.
Customer 452747, June 9th, 2021
Business and administrative studies
excellent job! got an A, thank you
Customer 452773, May 24th, 2023
History
Looks great and appreciate the help.
Customer 452675, April 26th, 2021
History
Don't really see any of sources I provided, but elsewise its great, thank you!
Customer 452697, May 8th, 2021
Business and administrative studies
Excellent job
Customer 452773, March 17th, 2023
10th grade English
very good
Customer 452773, March 26th, 2023
Business and administrative studies
Thank you for your hard work and effort. Made a 96 out of 125 points Lacked information from the rubic
Customer 452773, October 27th, 2023
BUSINESS LAW
excellent job made a 93
Customer 452773, March 22nd, 2023
Business and administrative studies
always perfect work and always completed early
Customer 452773, February 21st, 2023
Human Resources Management (HRM)
excellent, great job
Customer 452773, June 19th, 2023
Business and administrative studies
excellent paper
Customer 452773, March 3rd, 2023
11,595
Customer reviews in total
96%
Current satisfaction rate
3 pages
Average paper length
37%
Customers referred by a friend
OUR GIFT TO YOU
15% OFF your first order
Use a coupon FIRST15 and enjoy expert help with any task at the most affordable price.
Claim my 15% OFF Order in Chat
Close

Sometimes it is hard to do all the work on your own

Let us help you get a good grade on your paper. Get professional help and free up your time for more important courses. Let us handle your;

  • Dissertations and Thesis
  • Essays
  • All Assignments

  • Research papers
  • Terms Papers
  • Online Classes
Live ChatWhatsApp