How to Write a Summary of an Article

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How to write a summary of an article? Summarizing an article can be a tricky task, especially if you’re still getting used to working with sources and determining their main ideas. But don’t worry–we’re here to help! This guide will walk you through how to write a summary of an article in just a few steps.

Before You Begin: Know Your Purpose

Before you can even start thinking about how to write a summary of an article, it’s important to understand why you’re doing it in the first place. After all, there are plenty of different ways to engage with sources–summarizing is just one option. So why choose to summarize over, say, critiquing or analyzing an article?

Well, the answer to that question will help determine how you approach writing your summary. Are you writing a summary as part of an assignment? If so, your professor will likely have specific guidelines about what they’re looking for. Make sure you understand these before you start writing, as this will help guide the way you construct your summary.

On the other hand, maybe you’re not writing a summary for an assignment. Maybe you’re just trying to get a handle on a particular article so that you can incorporate it into a larger project of your own. In this case, your goal will be to distill the main ideas of the article into a form that’s easy for you to understand and work with.

Keep your purpose in mind as you read the article and take notes on its main points. This will help you determine what information is most important to include in your summary.

How to Write a Summary of an Article

Step 1: Read the Article

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s worth emphasizing because it’s so important: to write a good summary of an article, you need to have a good understanding of what the article is actually about. And the only way to get that understanding is to read–carefully and with attention to detail.

As you read, keep the following questions in mind:

  • What is the overall argument or main point of the article?
  • What supporting evidence does the author use to back up their argument?
  • Are there any counterarguments or alternative interpretations of the evidence presented in the article?
  • How does the author structure their argument? What order do they present their information in?

Annotating the article as you read can help you keep track of its main points and structure. If you’re not sure what annotating is, it just means writing down your thoughts and observations about the text as you read it. This can include things like highlighting key passages, jotting down questions or ideas that occur to you, and summarizing main points in the margins.

Step 2: Identify the Main Ideas

Once you’ve finished reading the article, it’s time to start extracting the main ideas. To do this, you can go back through your annotations and find the most important points that the author makes. Alternatively, you could also just re-read the article to identify its major takeaways.

As you identify the main ideas, it can be helpful to make a list or, even better, a mind map. This will give you a visual overview of the article’s content, which can be helpful as you start putting together your summary.

person writing on white notebook

Step 3: Write Your Summary

Now that you know what information you need to include, it’s time to start writing your summary. When you’re getting started, it can be helpful, to begin with, a basic outline of what you want to say. This doesn’t have to be anything too formal–just a few bullet points that cover the main points you want to hit.

Once you have your outline, you can start fleshing it out into a full-fledged summary. As you do this, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Use your own words as much as possible. This isn’t a time for a quotation; it’s a time for synthesis.
  • Be concise. A summary should be significantly shorter than the original article, so you’ll need to be judicious in deciding what information to include.
  • Stick to the point. Don’t try to include everything you know about the topic; focus on the information that’s most relevant to the article at hand.
  • Make sure your summary is well-organized. Just as the original article had a specific structure, your summary should too.
  • Pay attention to tone. Depending on your audience and purpose, you may want to match the tone of the original article or take a different approach altogether.

Importance of writing a summary of an article

Why is it important to write a summary of an article? Because a summary allows you to distill the main ideas of an article into a form that’s easy for you to understand and work with. A good summary will also give you a better understanding of the article itself, which can be helpful when you need to reference it later on.

In short, writing a summary of an article is a valuable skill that can help you both in your academic and professional life. So if you haven’t already, make sure to give it a try the next time you encounter a long or complex article.

Things to consider in writing a summary of an article

When writing a summary of an article, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.

  • Your summary should be considerably shorter than the original article. This means that you’ll need to be selective in what information you include.
  • Your summary should be written in your own words as much as possible. This isn’t the time for a quotation; it’s the time for synthesis.
  • Make sure that your summary is well-organized and pays attention to tone. Depending on your audience and purpose, you may want to match the tone of the original article or take a different approach altogether.

Conclusion

In short, it is important to write a summary of an article because it allows you to distill the main ideas into a form that is easy to understand and work with. A good summary will also give you a better understanding of the article itself. When writing a summary, be sure to be concise, use your own words as much as possible, and stick to the most relevant information.

Pay attention to tone as well, depending on your audience and purpose. Writing a summary of an article can be a valuable skill in both academic and professional life.

FAQ’s

How to Write a Summary of an Article

  • Start with the main idea

To write a summary of an article, you need to first read and understand the piece. After you have a grasp on the overall argument or purpose of the article, you can begin writing your summary. Begin by introducing the article with the author’s full name and the title of the piece. Then, write 1-2 sentences that briefly describe the main idea or argument of the article.

  • Include key details

After introducing the article, begin writing your summary by including key details from the piece. These details might include quotes, statistics, or other important information that supports the author’s argument. Be sure to only include information that is essential to understanding the article.

  • Use your own words

When writing your summary, be sure to use your own words as much as possible. While it is okay to include quotes from the article, you want to make sure that the majority of your summary is in your own words. This will show that you have fully understood the article and can communicate its ideas.

  • Edit and revise

Once you have finished writing your summary, take some time to edit and revise it. Make sure that your summary is clear and concise, and that it accurately represents the main ideas of the article. You may also want to have someone else read your summary to see if they understand the article after reading your summary.

What is a summary?

A summary is a brief overview or recap of an article, text, or speech. Summaries are usually shorter than the source material and can be anywhere from a few sentences to several paragraphs long.

Why do we write summaries?

Summaries are written for many different purposes. They can be used to give an overview of an argument or text, to provide a condensed version of a longer piece, or simply highlight the main points of something. Summaries can be helpful for both the writer and the reader, as they can help the writer to better understand a piece and the reader save time.

How do I write a summary?

To write a summary, you first need to read and understand the source material. Once you have a grasp of the main ideas, you can begin writing your summary. Be sure to use your own words as much as possible, and include only essential information from the source material. Once you have finished writing, take some time to edit and revise your summary.

What is the difference between a summary and an analysis?

A summary is a brief overview or recap of an article, text, or speech. An analysis is a more in-depth look at the components of something. While both summaries and analyses provide condensed versions of something, an analysis goes further by breaking down the parts and looking at their meanings.

What is the difference between a summary and an abstract?

An abstract is a summary of a research article, thesis, or book. It is usually written before the work it summarizes is finished. An abstract typically contains one or two sentences that give an overview of the main points of the work. A summary, on the other hand, is a brief overview or recap of an article, text, or speech. It is usually written after the work it summarizes is finished.

A summary of an article is a brief overview or recap of the main points. It is usually shorter than the original article and can be anywhere from a few sentences to several paragraphs long. A summary should include the most important points from the article and should use your own words as much as possible. When writing a summary, you should also take some time to edit and revise it, to make sure that it is clear and concise.

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