1999 This work is provided free of charge under a creative commons License (click here to read the conditions governing use) For permission to print and use this page, please contact me by e-mail. Summary writing allows you to combine both English reading comprehension and writing into a single task that focuses on both skills. It's important to understand what summary writing is first, so you can get the most benefit from this useful tool. Summary writing is composing a summary of a piece of written material into a one or two paragraph piece that conveys the main topics and points of the original written material. The original written material can be a single chapter from a novel, an article in a magazine, or a short story. The objective is to carefully read through the content and identify what ideas are being presented. The best way to do this is to read through the material slowly and take notes. It is also beneficial to reread through the material a second time to ensure you didn't miss any important ideas.
Summary - definition and Examples of Summaries
Checking your own writing or that of your peers read the summary carefully and answer the following questions: What do you like best about your peer's summary? . How might he or she do more of it?) Is it clear what is being summarized? (i.e.: Did your peer list the source, and cite it correctly?) Is the thesis of the original essay clear in the summary? (Write out what you think that thesis.) If you have read the original source, did you identify the same thesis? (If sales not, edmund how does it differ?) Did your peer miss any key points from his or her summary? (If so, what are they?) Did your peer include any of his own opinions in his or her summary? (If so, what are they?) Did your peer include any unimportant details in his or her summary? (If so, what are they?) Where there any points in the summary where you were lost because a transition was missing? . (If so, where and how might it be fixed?) Where there any points where you were lost because some information seems to have been omitted? . (If so, where, and what seems to be missing? . Why do you think it might be important?) to print a copy of these questions as a checklist, click here sandra jamieson, Drew University.
Include one or more of the authors examples or illustrations (these will bring your summary to life. . do not include your own ideas, illustrations, metaphors, or interpretations. . look upon yourself as a summarizing machine; you are simply repeating what the source text says, in fewer words and in your own words. . But the fact that you are using your own words does not mean that you are including your own ideas. There is customarily no conclusion to a summary essay. When you have summarized the source text, your summary essay is finished. . do not add your own concluding paragraph unless your teacher specifically tells daddy you.
This thesis statement is not your book main point; it is the main point of your source. Usually, though, you have to write this statement rather than" it from the source text. . It is a one-sentence summary of the entire text that your essay summarizes. Also introduces the text to be summarized: (i) gives the title of the source (following the citation guidelines of whatever style sheet you are using (ii) Provides the name of the author of the source; (ii) Sometimes also list provides pertinent background information about the author. The introduction should not offer your own opinions or evaluation of the text you are summarizing. The body of a summary essay (one or more paragraphs This paraphrases and condenses the original piece. . In your summary, be sure that you-. . Include important data but omit minor points;. .
(Anytime you read and repeat a source, of course, you are interpreting it; but the summary essay asks you to minimize your interpretation as much as possible. . you should not add your own examples and explanations, for instance.). An alternative purpose of the summary essay, one that is very commonplace in college, is a demonstration of comprehension: teachers sometimes assign summary essays when they want to make sure that students fully understand an assigned source. . In this case, your essay does not substitute for the source, for the teacher has read the source, too. . Yet your essay will be written in the same way, with fidelity to the source. Writing the summary Essay, a summary essay should be organized so that others can understand the source or evaluate your comprehension. . The following format works well:. The introduction (usually one paragraph) -. . Contains a one-sentence thesis statement that sums up the main point of the source.
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take a notebook page and about divide it down out the middle. . Write the main points in the left hand column leaving a few lines between each. . In the right hand column, summarize the point in the left column in a few sentences. This will help you get an overall picture of the argument through the outline, and a more detailed reminder of the content via the summaries. Summaries as part of essays, most summary occurs as part of other essays-indeed, few essays use only one kind of writing. Summary is often a part of synthesis because readers need to know a little about the ideas you are pulling together. .
Similarly, you have to summarize ideas or texts before you can compare them, classify them, or divide them into their component parts. You will find that almost any texts you read in college and outside contain at least a little summary. In college you may also be asked to write another type of summary, the summary essay, which is written for an audience other than yourself. . The purpose of the summary essay is to convey to others an understanding of a text you have read, without their having to read it themselves. . Thus for your readers, your summary essay functions as a substitute for the source that you are summarizing. . you don't want to misrepresent your source or mislead your audience. . Certainly an important feature of the summary essay, then, is its fidelity to the source; you must represent your source accurately and comprehensively, with as little of your own interpretation as possible.
Similarly, when you summarize a reading you need to be able to find the important data and then present it as clearly and concisely as possible. Summary skills after college. Politicians and corporations employ people to read every newspaper and newsmagazine and summarize relevant stories and articles. The more concise the summary the better, yet if any major details are omitted the purpose of the summary is lost-its readers will be uninformed on key aspects of the news and may make embarrassing errors as a result. The summaries that you write in college are as important to your academic career as these summaries are to these politicians and business people, and accuracy and concision are just as important, too. The key features of a summary (1) it is shorter than the source, (2) it repeats the ideas of the source in different phrases and sentences.
The reader's Summary, obviously, you cannot write a good summary of a source that you do not understand. . There are reading strategies that will help you comprehend a source text as fully as possible. . One of those techniques is the readers summary, which you write for yourself, as a way of understanding the text you are reading. . read a section of the book or article, or the whole thing if it is short, and then close the text and write a summary of the key points. . When you've finished, skim the text again to make sure you didn't omit anything. . This use of summary helps you learn and helps you check what you've learned. Summary-outline notes, summary-outline notes are a form of note-taking using a divided page. .
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Summary skills in college, the ability to write an effective summary might be the most important writing skill a college student can possess. You need to be able to summarize before you can be successful at most of the other kinds of writing that will be demanded of you in college, and it is an important part of note taking, too. The links below will help you master the various kinds of summary writing that you may be called upon to complete in college. Summary skills in daily life, to answer questions such as what was the movie about? How did the game go? And what did I miss in class today? You must be able to summarize. . your questioner doesn't want to know every line and action in the movie, every play in the game, or every word from class; the question asks summary you to select the important details and summarize them. .
Read with who, what, when, where, why and how questions in mind. Do not put in your opinion of kindergarten the issue or topic discussed in the original piece. Often, instructors ask students to put their opinions in a paragraph separate from the summary. Read "The secret Life of Walter Mitty" by james Thurber. Return to the reading Lab page). Drew University On-Line resources for, writers, summary Writing. Warning: good summaries are harder to write than you may think - bad summaries are easy!
a period of about twenty minutes; during this brief time, mitty drives his wife to the hairdresser and runs errands that his wife has given him while he waits for her. In between his worrying that he is not doing what she wants him to do, he daydreams about himself as a great surgeon, brilliant repair technician, expert marksman, and brave military captain. This story shows that fantasy is often a good alternative to reality. Remember: do not rewrite the original piece. Keep your summary short. Use your own wording. Refer to the central and main ideas of the original piece.
Always read the introductory paragraph thoughtfully and look for a thesis statement. . Finding the thesis statement is like finding a key to a locked door. . Frequently, however, the thesis, or central idea, is implied or suggested. . Thus, you will have to work harder to figure out what the author wants readers to understand. Use any hints that may shed light on the meaning of database the piece: pay attention to the title and any headings and to the opening and closing lines of paragraphs. In writing the summary, let your reader know the piece that you are summarizing. Identify the title, author and source of the piece. You may want to use this formula: In "Title of the piece" (source and date of piece author shows that: central idea of the piece. . The author supports the main idea by using _ and showing that here is a sample summary: In the short story "The secret Life of Walter Mitty author James Thurber humorously presents a character who fantasizes about himself as a hero enduring incredibly challenging circumstances.
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Writing a summary, writing a summary, a summary is condensed version of a larger reading. . A summary is not a rewrite of the original piece and does not have to be long nor should it be long. . to write a summary, use your own words to express briefly the main idea and relevant details of the piece you have read. . your purpose in writing the summary is to give the basic ideas of the original reading. . What was it about and what did the author want to communicate? While reading the original work, take note of what or who is the focus and ask the usual questions that reporters use: Who? Using these questions to examine what you are reading can help you to write the summary. Sometimes, the central idea of the piece is stated mini in the introduction or first paragraph, and the supporting ideas of this central idea are presented one by one in the following paragraphs.