Writing an Abstract for Your Research Paper
Definition and Purpose of Abstracts
An abstract is a short summary of your (published or unpublished) research paper, usually about a paragraph (c. 6-7 sentences, 150-250 words) long. A well-written abstract serves multiple purposes:
- an abstract lets readers get the gist or essence of your paper or article quickly, in order to decide whether to read the full paper;
- an abstract prepares readers to follow the detailed information, analyses, and arguments in your full paper;
- and, later, an abstract helps readers remember key points from your paper.
It’s also worth remembering that search engines and bibliographic databases use abstracts, as well as the title, to identify key terms for indexing your published paper. So what you include in your abstract and in your title are crucial for helping other researchers find your paper or article.
If you are writing an abstract for a course paper, your professor may give you specific guidelines for what to include and how to organize your abstract. Similarly, academic journals often have specific requirements for abstracts. So in addition to following the advice on this page, you should be sure to look for and follow any guidelines from the course or journal you’re writing for.
The Contents of an Abstract
Abstracts contain most of the following kinds of information in brief form. The body of your paper will, of course, develop and explain these ideas much more fully. As you will see in the samples below, the proportion of your abstract that you devote to each kind of information—and the sequence of that information—will vary, depending on the nature and genre of the paper that you are summarizing in your abstract. And in some cases, some of this information is implied, rather than stated explicitly. The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association , which is widely used in the social sciences, gives specific guidelines for what to include in the abstract for different kinds of papers—for empirical studies, literature reviews or meta-analyses, theoretical papers, methodological papers, and case studies.
Here are the typical kinds of information found in most abstracts:
- the context or background information for your research; the general topic under study; the specific topic of your research
- the central questions or statement of the problem your research addresses
- what’s already known about this question, what previous research has done or shown
- the main reason(s) , the exigency, the rationale , the goals for your research—Why is it important to address these questions? Are you, for example, examining a new topic? Why is that topic worth examining? Are you filling a gap in previous research? Applying new methods to take a fresh look at existing ideas or data? Resolving a dispute within the literature in your field? . . .
- your research and/or analytical methods
- your main findings , results , or arguments
- the significance or implications of your findings or arguments.
Your abstract should be intelligible on its own, without a reader’s having to read your entire paper. And in an abstract, you usually do not cite references—most of your abstract will describe what you have studied in your research and what you have found and what you argue in your paper. In the body of your paper, you will cite the specific literature that informs your research.
When to Write Your Abstract
Although you might be tempted to write your abstract first because it will appear as the very first part of your paper, it’s a good idea to wait to write your abstract until after you’ve drafted your full paper, so that you know what you’re summarizing.
What follows are some sample abstracts in published papers or articles, all written by faculty at UW-Madison who come from a variety of disciplines. We have annotated these samples to help you see the work that these authors are doing within their abstracts.
Choosing Verb Tenses within Your Abstract
The social science sample (Sample 1) below uses the present tense to describe general facts and interpretations that have been and are currently true, including the prevailing explanation for the social phenomenon under study. That abstract also uses the present tense to describe the methods, the findings, the arguments, and the implications of the findings from their new research study. The authors use the past tense to describe previous research.
The humanities sample (Sample 2) below uses the past tense to describe completed events in the past (the texts created in the pulp fiction industry in the 1970s and 80s) and uses the present tense to describe what is happening in those texts, to explain the significance or meaning of those texts, and to describe the arguments presented in the article.
The science samples (Samples 3 and 4) below use the past tense to describe what previous research studies have done and the research the authors have conducted, the methods they have followed, and what they have found. In their rationale or justification for their research (what remains to be done), they use the present tense. They also use the present tense to introduce their study (in Sample 3, “Here we report . . .”) and to explain the significance of their study (In Sample 3, This reprogramming . . . “provides a scalable cell source for. . .”).
Sample Abstract 1
From the social sciences.
Reporting new findings about the reasons for increasing economic homogamy among spouses
Gonalons-Pons, Pilar, and Christine R. Schwartz. “Trends in Economic Homogamy: Changes in Assortative Mating or the Division of Labor in Marriage?” Demography , vol. 54, no. 3, 2017, pp. 985-1005.
Sample Abstract 2
From the humanities.
Analyzing underground pulp fiction publications in Tanzania, this article makes an argument about the cultural significance of those publications
Emily Callaci. “Street Textuality: Socialism, Masculinity, and Urban Belonging in Tanzania’s Pulp Fiction Publishing Industry, 1975-1985.” Comparative Studies in Society and History , vol. 59, no. 1, 2017, pp. 183-210.
Sample Abstract/Summary 3
From the sciences.
Reporting a new method for reprogramming adult mouse fibroblasts into induced cardiac progenitor cells
Lalit, Pratik A., Max R. Salick, Daryl O. Nelson, Jayne M. Squirrell, Christina M. Shafer, Neel G. Patel, Imaan Saeed, Eric G. Schmuck, Yogananda S. Markandeya, Rachel Wong, Martin R. Lea, Kevin W. Eliceiri, Timothy A. Hacker, Wendy C. Crone, Michael Kyba, Daniel J. Garry, Ron Stewart, James A. Thomson, Karen M. Downs, Gary E. Lyons, and Timothy J. Kamp. “Lineage Reprogramming of Fibroblasts into Proliferative Induced Cardiac Progenitor Cells by Defined Factors.” Cell Stem Cell , vol. 18, 2016, pp. 354-367.
Sample Abstract 4, a Structured Abstract
Reporting results about the effectiveness of antibiotic therapy in managing acute bacterial sinusitis, from a rigorously controlled study
Note: This journal requires authors to organize their abstract into four specific sections, with strict word limits. Because the headings for this structured abstract are self-explanatory, we have chosen not to add annotations to this sample abstract.
Wald, Ellen R., David Nash, and Jens Eickhoff. “Effectiveness of Amoxicillin/Clavulanate Potassium in the Treatment of Acute Bacterial Sinusitis in Children.” Pediatrics , vol. 124, no. 1, 2009, pp. 9-15.
“OBJECTIVE: The role of antibiotic therapy in managing acute bacterial sinusitis (ABS) in children is controversial. The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of high-dose amoxicillin/potassium clavulanate in the treatment of children diagnosed with ABS.
METHODS : This was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Children 1 to 10 years of age with a clinical presentation compatible with ABS were eligible for participation. Patients were stratified according to age (<6 or ≥6 years) and clinical severity and randomly assigned to receive either amoxicillin (90 mg/kg) with potassium clavulanate (6.4 mg/kg) or placebo. A symptom survey was performed on days 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 10, 20, and 30. Patients were examined on day 14. Children’s conditions were rated as cured, improved, or failed according to scoring rules.
RESULTS: Two thousand one hundred thirty-five children with respiratory complaints were screened for enrollment; 139 (6.5%) had ABS. Fifty-eight patients were enrolled, and 56 were randomly assigned. The mean age was 6630 months. Fifty (89%) patients presented with persistent symptoms, and 6 (11%) presented with nonpersistent symptoms. In 24 (43%) children, the illness was classified as mild, whereas in the remaining 32 (57%) children it was severe. Of the 28 children who received the antibiotic, 14 (50%) were cured, 4 (14%) were improved, 4(14%) experienced treatment failure, and 6 (21%) withdrew. Of the 28children who received placebo, 4 (14%) were cured, 5 (18%) improved, and 19 (68%) experienced treatment failure. Children receiving the antibiotic were more likely to be cured (50% vs 14%) and less likely to have treatment failure (14% vs 68%) than children receiving the placebo.
CONCLUSIONS : ABS is a common complication of viral upper respiratory infections. Amoxicillin/potassium clavulanate results in significantly more cures and fewer failures than placebo, according to parental report of time to resolution.” (9)
Some Excellent Advice about Writing Abstracts for Basic Science Research Papers, by Professor Adriano Aguzzi from the Institute of Neuropathology at the University of Zurich:
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APA Abstract (2020) | Formatting, Length, and Keywords
Published on November 6, 2020 by Raimo Streefkerk . Revised on January 3, 2022.
An APA abstract is a comprehensive summary of your paper in which you briefly address the research problem , hypotheses , methods , results , and implications of your research. It’s placed on a separate page right after the title page and is usually no longer than 250 words.
Most professional papers that are submitted for publication require an abstract. Student papers typically don’t need an abstract, unless instructed otherwise.
Table of contents
How to format the abstract, how to write an apa abstract, which keywords to use, frequently asked questions, apa abstract example.
Follow these five steps to format your abstract in APA Style:
- Insert a running head (for a professional paper—not needed for a student paper) and page number.
- Set page margins to 1 inch (2.54 cm).
- Write “Abstract” (bold and centered) at the top of the page.
- Do not indent the first line.
- Double-space the text.
- Use a legible font like Times New Roman (12 pt.).
- Limit the length to 250 words.
- Indent the first line 0.5 inches.
- Write the label “Keywords:” (italicized).
- Write keywords in lowercase letters.
- Separate keywords with commas.
- Do not use a period after the keywords.
The abstract is a self-contained piece of text that informs the reader what your research is about. It’s best to write the abstract after you’re finished with the rest of your paper.
The questions below may help structure your abstract. Try answering them in one to three sentences each.
- What is the problem? Outline the objective, research questions , and/or hypotheses .
- What has been done? Explain your research methods .
- What did you discover? Summarize the key findings and conclusions .
- What do the findings mean? Summarize the discussion and recommendations .
Check out our guide on how to write an abstract for more guidance and an annotated example.
Guide: writing an abstract
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At the end of the abstract, you may include a few keywords that will be used for indexing if your paper is published on a database. Listing your keywords will help other researchers find your work.
Choosing relevant keywords is essential. Try to identify keywords that address your topic, method, or population. APA recommends including three to five keywords.
An abstract is a concise summary of an academic text (such as a journal article or dissertation ). It serves two main purposes:
- To help potential readers determine the relevance of your paper for their own research.
- To communicate your key findings to those who don’t have time to read the whole paper.
Abstracts are often indexed along with keywords on academic databases, so they make your work more easily findable. Since the abstract is the first thing any reader sees, it’s important that it clearly and accurately summarizes the contents of your paper.
An APA abstract is around 150–250 words long. However, always check your target journal’s guidelines and don’t exceed the specified word count.
In an APA Style paper , the abstract is placed on a separate page after the title page (page 2).
Avoid citing sources in your abstract . There are two reasons for this:
- The abstract should focus on your original research, not on the work of others.
- The abstract should be self-contained and fully understandable without reference to other sources.
There are some circumstances where you might need to mention other sources in an abstract: for example, if your research responds directly to another study or focuses on the work of a single theorist. In general, though, don’t include citations unless absolutely necessary.
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Streefkerk, R. (2022, January 03). APA Abstract (2020) | Formatting, Length, and Keywords. Scribbr. Retrieved February 28, 2023, from https://www.scribbr.com/apa-style/apa-abstract/
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How to write a great abstract for your academic manuscript
You’ve collected your data, analyzed your findings, written your manuscript, and all that’s left to do before you submit your paper is to write the abstract. Quick and easy, right? But wait!
Despite the fact that abstracts are the most visible and highly-read component of nearly all academic articles, many authors treat them as an afterthought. However, a strong abstract is essential to ensuring your paper has the largest impact and readership possible, and to facilitate fast and appropriate peer review. At Social Sciences and Humanities Open, we recommend viewing your abstract as a publication in itself, where the goal is to condense the key information from your article into a clear, concise form.
We understand that for many researchers, writing a strong abstract can be a daunting ask. This resource is designed to help authors who would like to submit to Social Sciences and Humanities Open understand the importance of writing excellent abstracts, key components to include in their abstracts, and common errors to avoid when writing up.
Why should authors take the time to write a stellar abstract?
Great Abstracts Increase Readership
Researchers publish articles in order to disseminate knowledge to other academics, practitioners, and decision-makers. However, before these audiences download, read, and cite your paper, they read your abstract. In fact, the majority of readers will only read your abstract. There are hundreds of thousands of journal articles published every year, published in thousands of academic journals. To deal with this flood of information, researchers have become very discerning when choosing the articles to which they’ll devote their limited attention. Abstracts are how they decide which articles to read, and which to ignore .
Articles which feature accurate, informative, well-written abstracts are more likely to be read, shared, and cited than articles which have incomplete or careless abstracts. Think of the abstract as your chance to pitch your article to the reader: y our goal as an author is for your abstract to be so clear and compelling that readers will be excited to click through, download, read, and cite the full article.
Clearly-Outlined Abstracts Speed Up the Editorial Process
All researchers want fast, quality, and helpful peer reviews, and writing strong abstracts are a simple way authors can help enhance the editorial process. Like most journals, peer reviewers for Social Sciences and Humanities Open are invited to read your abstract— not the full article— before deciding whether they’d like to review your paper. Reviewers use your abstract to identify if your area of research, theoretical framework and methods are aligned with their own research ; failing to include this critical information in the abstract can lead to mis-matched peer reviews and less helpful feedback.
Reviewers are also more likely to accept invitations to review papers which address interesting research questions and are generally well-wr itten . Your abstract is your opportunity to demonstrate to reviewers that your research article is interesting, carefully considered, compelling, and worth their time to review. If you’re successful in writing an abstract which is enticing to reviewers, our editorial team will need to invite fewer individuals to read your paper, leading to faster turnaround times for comments and decisions.
What is included in a strong abstract?
Understanding the importance of abstracts can make writing them feel like an overwhelming task. Luckily for authors, nearly all effective abstracts contain the same information, and it is relatively simple to ensure your abstract contains the necessary components. While the expectations of abstracts vary between academic disciplines, we generally expect to see the following components in abstracts submitted to Social Sciences and Humanities Open.
We do not suggest you include these components as distinct sections or headers in your abstract. Instead, we recommend you write your abstract as a single block-style paragraph . However, when writing and proofreading your abstract, use the following checklist to ensure you have included the necessary information for your audience:
Background and research question(s)
In one or two sentences, give your readers a very broad understanding of the need-to-know background information for your study, and how your paper will contribute to this knowledge. You may want to explicitly include your research question in this section; make sure it is concise and to-the-point!
Theoretical or conc eptual framework
Readers should, upon reading your abstract, generally understand your epistemological and theoretical approach to your research problem. This is particularly important in fields which are dominated by canonical theorists! In one or two sentences, outline the theoretical or conceptual framework you use in your paper.
Research Design and Methodology
Your abstract should include an outline of how your study was conducted through a short description of your research design and methodology. Include, if relevant, your sample size, methods for analysis, and the duration of the study. Do not mention very specific details such as what statistical software was used for analysis or include citations for your methodological approach.
The majority of your audience reads abstracts because they are interested in the results of published research. As such, the results section should be the longest component of your abstract. In three to six sentences, describe the key findings of your study in the order they are discussed in the manuscript. Aim to clearly describe how your results answer your research questions(s). Include as much detail as possible and remember to report negative findings. If relevant, be sure to include p-values for statistical tests.
Provide readers a few key points regarding the implications of your study that you describe in your paper—both for your academic field, and, if applicable, for the communities your research involves. One to two sentences here is sufficient for this section.
What are some common pitfalls to avoid when writing an abstract?
Too wordy, or not detailed enough
Social Sciences and Humanities Open does not have a strict word limit for abstracts. Ideally, however, your abstract will fall between 150 and 400 words. Generally speaking, abstracts shorter than 150 words do not contain enough information to properly summarize and present the research to the audience. Abstracts longer than 400 words, on the other hand, often contain too much information, and could likely benefit from a copy-edit to remove unnecessary sentences and phrases. Refer to the list above to ensure that you are including all necessary information in your abstract, and also that you are including only necessary information.
Repeats the i ntroduction
Our editors often receive manuscripts with abstracts which are copied-and-pasted from the paper’s introduction section. Don’t be one of these authors! The requirements of an abstract are very different from the requirements of an introduction. Not only will an abstract which is copied-and-pasted from your introduction not provide the necessary information to your readers, it will suggest a lack of care to your editors and reviewers—something authors should do their best to avoid!
I ncludes r eferences, j argon, and a cronyms
The abstract should be written as a stand-alone document, and should also be understandable to non-specialist audiences. Many writers aim for their abstracts to be written at a level that would be understandable for first- or second-year undergraduate students in their fields. For this reason, it is recommended that authors exclude including references, jargon, and acronyms in their abstracts. If you feel you must include a reference (for example, if your analytical framework depends on a canonical work), try to limit the number of them, and be sure to cite the author and date. If included, acronyms should be written in full the first time they are introduced in the abstract.
Grammatical Errors and Typos
Nothing turns a prospective reader or reviewer off from your article like typos, grammatical errors, passive voice, and unclear phrasing. Authors should take as much care in ensuring their abstracts are professionally presented as they do for the rest of their manuscript. We recommend doing several rounds of copy-editing before submitting your abstract, to ensure it reads as clearly and professionally as possible.
Now, get writing that abstract!
Now that you know why you want a strong abstract, the key elements to include, and common mistakes to avoid, it’s time to write! Just as you produced several drafts of your manuscript before it was ready to submit, don’t be surprised if your abstract takes time and many rounds of edits before it’s complete. For authors unsure about the quality of their abstract, we recommend asking a non-specialist friend or colleague to read it over. Is your reader able to tell you, in broad terms, what your study was about and its contributions? Did they understand the language you used? Were all of your sentences typo-free? And, perhaps most importantly, were they interested in reading your full paper? If the answer to these questions is yes, then you’re ready to submit!
The editorial team at SSHO developed this guide to help de-mystify the requirements and process of writing a stellar abstract for researchers. We hope this tool will assist SSHO authors with producing informative and attractive abstracts that will highlight their important research contributions, and allow their research to reach large and broad audiences. We can’t wait to read your abstracts!
What this handout is about
This handout provides definitions and examples of the two main types of abstracts: descriptive and informative. It also provides guidelines for constructing an abstract and general tips for you to keep in mind when drafting. Finally, it includes a few examples of abstracts broken down into their component parts.
What is an abstract?
An abstract is a self-contained, short, and powerful statement that describes a larger work. Components vary according to discipline. An abstract of a social science or scientific work may contain the scope, purpose, results, and contents of the work. An abstract of a humanities work may contain the thesis, background, and conclusion of the larger work. An abstract is not a review, nor does it evaluate the work being abstracted. While it contains key words found in the larger work, the abstract is an original document rather than an excerpted passage.
Why write an abstract?
You may write an abstract for various reasons. The two most important are selection and indexing. Abstracts allow readers who may be interested in a longer work to quickly decide whether it is worth their time to read it. Also, many online databases use abstracts to index larger works. Therefore, abstracts should contain keywords and phrases that allow for easy searching.
Say you are beginning a research project on how Brazilian newspapers helped Brazil’s ultra-liberal president Luiz Ignácio da Silva wrest power from the traditional, conservative power base. A good first place to start your research is to search Dissertation Abstracts International for all dissertations that deal with the interaction between newspapers and politics. “Newspapers and politics” returned 569 hits. A more selective search of “newspapers and Brazil” returned 22 hits. That is still a fair number of dissertations. Titles can sometimes help winnow the field, but many titles are not very descriptive. For example, one dissertation is titled “Rhetoric and Riot in Rio de Janeiro.” It is unclear from the title what this dissertation has to do with newspapers in Brazil. One option would be to download or order the entire dissertation on the chance that it might speak specifically to the topic. A better option is to read the abstract. In this case, the abstract reveals the main focus of the dissertation:
This dissertation examines the role of newspaper editors in the political turmoil and strife that characterized late First Empire Rio de Janeiro (1827-1831). Newspaper editors and their journals helped change the political culture of late First Empire Rio de Janeiro by involving the people in the discussion of state. This change in political culture is apparent in Emperor Pedro I’s gradual loss of control over the mechanisms of power. As the newspapers became more numerous and powerful, the Emperor lost his legitimacy in the eyes of the people. To explore the role of the newspapers in the political events of the late First Empire, this dissertation analyzes all available newspapers published in Rio de Janeiro from 1827 to 1831. Newspapers and their editors were leading forces in the effort to remove power from the hands of the ruling elite and place it under the control of the people. In the process, newspapers helped change how politics operated in the constitutional monarchy of Brazil.
From this abstract you now know that although the dissertation has nothing to do with modern Brazilian politics, it does cover the role of newspapers in changing traditional mechanisms of power. After reading the abstract, you can make an informed judgment about whether the dissertation would be worthwhile to read.
Besides selection, the other main purpose of the abstract is for indexing. Most article databases in the online catalog of the library enable you to search abstracts. This allows for quick retrieval by users and limits the extraneous items recalled by a “full-text” search. However, for an abstract to be useful in an online retrieval system, it must incorporate the key terms that a potential researcher would use to search. For example, if you search Dissertation Abstracts International using the keywords “France” “revolution” and “politics,” the search engine would search through all the abstracts in the database that included those three words. Without an abstract, the search engine would be forced to search titles, which, as we have seen, may not be fruitful, or else search the full text. It’s likely that a lot more than 60 dissertations have been written with those three words somewhere in the body of the entire work. By incorporating keywords into the abstract, the author emphasizes the central topics of the work and gives prospective readers enough information to make an informed judgment about the applicability of the work.
When do people write abstracts?
- when submitting articles to journals, especially online journals
- when applying for research grants
- when writing a book proposal
- when completing the Ph.D. dissertation or M.A. thesis
- when writing a proposal for a conference paper
- when writing a proposal for a book chapter
Most often, the author of the entire work (or prospective work) writes the abstract. However, there are professional abstracting services that hire writers to draft abstracts of other people’s work. In a work with multiple authors, the first author usually writes the abstract. Undergraduates are sometimes asked to draft abstracts of books/articles for classmates who have not read the larger work.
Types of abstracts
There are two types of abstracts: descriptive and informative. They have different aims, so as a consequence they have different components and styles. There is also a third type called critical, but it is rarely used. If you want to find out more about writing a critique or a review of a work, see the UNC Writing Center handout on writing a literature review . If you are unsure which type of abstract you should write, ask your instructor (if the abstract is for a class) or read other abstracts in your field or in the journal where you are submitting your article.
A descriptive abstract indicates the type of information found in the work. It makes no judgments about the work, nor does it provide results or conclusions of the research. It does incorporate key words found in the text and may include the purpose, methods, and scope of the research. Essentially, the descriptive abstract describes the work being abstracted. Some people consider it an outline of the work, rather than a summary. Descriptive abstracts are usually very short—100 words or less.
The majority of abstracts are informative. While they still do not critique or evaluate a work, they do more than describe it. A good informative abstract acts as a surrogate for the work itself. That is, the writer presents and explains all the main arguments and the important results and evidence in the complete article/paper/book. An informative abstract includes the information that can be found in a descriptive abstract (purpose, methods, scope) but also includes the results and conclusions of the research and the recommendations of the author. The length varies according to discipline, but an informative abstract is rarely more than 10% of the length of the entire work. In the case of a longer work, it may be much less.
Here are examples of a descriptive and an informative abstract of this handout on abstracts . Descriptive abstract:
The two most common abstract types—descriptive and informative—are described and examples of each are provided.
Abstracts present the essential elements of a longer work in a short and powerful statement. The purpose of an abstract is to provide prospective readers the opportunity to judge the relevance of the longer work to their projects. Abstracts also include the key terms found in the longer work and the purpose and methods of the research. Authors abstract various longer works, including book proposals, dissertations, and online journal articles. There are two main types of abstracts: descriptive and informative. A descriptive abstract briefly describes the longer work, while an informative abstract presents all the main arguments and important results. This handout provides examples of various types of abstracts and instructions on how to construct one.
Which type should I use?
Your best bet in this case is to ask your instructor or refer to the instructions provided by the publisher. You can also make a guess based on the length allowed; i.e., 100-120 words = descriptive; 250+ words = informative.
How do I write an abstract?
The format of your abstract will depend on the work being abstracted. An abstract of a scientific research paper will contain elements not found in an abstract of a literature article, and vice versa. However, all abstracts share several mandatory components, and there are also some optional parts that you can decide to include or not. When preparing to draft your abstract, keep the following key process elements in mind:
- Reason for writing: What is the importance of the research? Why would a reader be interested in the larger work?
- Problem: What problem does this work attempt to solve? What is the scope of the project? What is the main argument/thesis/claim?
- Methodology: An abstract of a scientific work may include specific models or approaches used in the larger study. Other abstracts may describe the types of evidence used in the research.
- Results: Again, an abstract of a scientific work may include specific data that indicates the results of the project. Other abstracts may discuss the findings in a more general way.
- Implications: What changes should be implemented as a result of the findings of the work? How does this work add to the body of knowledge on the topic?
(This list of elements is adapted with permission from Philip Koopman, “How to Write an Abstract.” )
All abstracts include:
- A full citation of the source, preceding the abstract.
- The most important information first.
- The same type and style of language found in the original, including technical language.
- Key words and phrases that quickly identify the content and focus of the work.
- Clear, concise, and powerful language.
Abstracts may include:
- The thesis of the work, usually in the first sentence.
- Background information that places the work in the larger body of literature.
- The same chronological structure as the original work.
How not to write an abstract:
- Do not refer extensively to other works.
- Do not add information not contained in the original work.
- Do not define terms.
If you are abstracting your own writing
When abstracting your own work, it may be difficult to condense a piece of writing that you have agonized over for weeks (or months, or even years) into a 250-word statement. There are some tricks that you could use to make it easier, however.
This technique is commonly used when you are having trouble organizing your own writing. The process involves writing down the main idea of each paragraph on a separate piece of paper– see our short video . For the purposes of writing an abstract, try grouping the main ideas of each section of the paper into a single sentence. Practice grouping ideas using webbing or color coding .
For a scientific paper, you may have sections titled Purpose, Methods, Results, and Discussion. Each one of these sections will be longer than one paragraph, but each is grouped around a central idea. Use reverse outlining to discover the central idea in each section and then distill these ideas into one statement.
Cut and paste:
To create a first draft of an abstract of your own work, you can read through the entire paper and cut and paste sentences that capture key passages. This technique is useful for social science research with findings that cannot be encapsulated by neat numbers or concrete results. A well-written humanities draft will have a clear and direct thesis statement and informative topic sentences for paragraphs or sections. Isolate these sentences in a separate document and work on revising them into a unified paragraph.
If you are abstracting someone else’s writing
When abstracting something you have not written, you cannot summarize key ideas just by cutting and pasting. Instead, you must determine what a prospective reader would want to know about the work. There are a few techniques that will help you in this process:
Identify key terms:
Search through the entire document for key terms that identify the purpose, scope, and methods of the work. Pay close attention to the Introduction (or Purpose) and the Conclusion (or Discussion). These sections should contain all the main ideas and key terms in the paper. When writing the abstract, be sure to incorporate the key terms.
Highlight key phrases and sentences:
Instead of cutting and pasting the actual words, try highlighting sentences or phrases that appear to be central to the work. Then, in a separate document, rewrite the sentences and phrases in your own words.
Don’t look back:
After reading the entire work, put it aside and write a paragraph about the work without referring to it. In the first draft, you may not remember all the key terms or the results, but you will remember what the main point of the work was. Remember not to include any information you did not get from the work being abstracted.
Revise, revise, revise
No matter what type of abstract you are writing, or whether you are abstracting your own work or someone else’s, the most important step in writing an abstract is to revise early and often. When revising, delete all extraneous words and incorporate meaningful and powerful words. The idea is to be as clear and complete as possible in the shortest possible amount of space. The Word Count feature of Microsoft Word can help you keep track of how long your abstract is and help you hit your target length.
Example 1: Humanities abstract
Kenneth Tait Andrews, “‘Freedom is a constant struggle’: The dynamics and consequences of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement, 1960-1984” Ph.D. State University of New York at Stony Brook, 1997 DAI-A 59/02, p. 620, Aug 1998
This dissertation examines the impacts of social movements through a multi-layered study of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement from its peak in the early 1960s through the early 1980s. By examining this historically important case, I clarify the process by which movements transform social structures and the constraints movements face when they try to do so. The time period studied includes the expansion of voting rights and gains in black political power, the desegregation of public schools and the emergence of white-flight academies, and the rise and fall of federal anti-poverty programs. I use two major research strategies: (1) a quantitative analysis of county-level data and (2) three case studies. Data have been collected from archives, interviews, newspapers, and published reports. This dissertation challenges the argument that movements are inconsequential. Some view federal agencies, courts, political parties, or economic elites as the agents driving institutional change, but typically these groups acted in response to the leverage brought to bear by the civil rights movement. The Mississippi movement attempted to forge independent structures for sustaining challenges to local inequities and injustices. By propelling change in an array of local institutions, movement infrastructures had an enduring legacy in Mississippi.
Now let’s break down this abstract into its component parts to see how the author has distilled his entire dissertation into a ~200 word abstract.
What the dissertation does This dissertation examines the impacts of social movements through a multi-layered study of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement from its peak in the early 1960s through the early 1980s. By examining this historically important case, I clarify the process by which movements transform social structures and the constraints movements face when they try to do so.
How the dissertation does it The time period studied in this dissertation includes the expansion of voting rights and gains in black political power, the desegregation of public schools and the emergence of white-flight academies, and the rise and fall of federal anti-poverty programs. I use two major research strategies: (1) a quantitative analysis of county-level data and (2) three case studies.
What materials are used Data have been collected from archives, interviews, newspapers, and published reports.
Conclusion This dissertation challenges the argument that movements are inconsequential. Some view federal agencies, courts, political parties, or economic elites as the agents driving institutional change, but typically these groups acted in response to movement demands and the leverage brought to bear by the civil rights movement. The Mississippi movement attempted to forge independent structures for sustaining challenges to local inequities and injustices. By propelling change in an array of local institutions, movement infrastructures had an enduring legacy in Mississippi.
Keywords social movements Civil Rights Movement Mississippi voting rights desegregation
Example 2: Science Abstract
Luis Lehner, “Gravitational radiation from black hole spacetimes” Ph.D. University of Pittsburgh, 1998 DAI-B 59/06, p. 2797, Dec 1998
The problem of detecting gravitational radiation is receiving considerable attention with the construction of new detectors in the United States, Europe, and Japan. The theoretical modeling of the wave forms that would be produced in particular systems will expedite the search for and analysis of detected signals. The characteristic formulation of GR is implemented to obtain an algorithm capable of evolving black holes in 3D asymptotically flat spacetimes. Using compactification techniques, future null infinity is included in the evolved region, which enables the unambiguous calculation of the radiation produced by some compact source. A module to calculate the waveforms is constructed and included in the evolution algorithm. This code is shown to be second-order convergent and to handle highly non-linear spacetimes. In particular, we have shown that the code can handle spacetimes whose radiation is equivalent to a galaxy converting its whole mass into gravitational radiation in one second. We further use the characteristic formulation to treat the region close to the singularity in black hole spacetimes. The code carefully excises a region surrounding the singularity and accurately evolves generic black hole spacetimes with apparently unlimited stability.
This science abstract covers much of the same ground as the humanities one, but it asks slightly different questions.
Why do this study The problem of detecting gravitational radiation is receiving considerable attention with the construction of new detectors in the United States, Europe, and Japan. The theoretical modeling of the wave forms that would be produced in particular systems will expedite the search and analysis of the detected signals.
What the study does The characteristic formulation of GR is implemented to obtain an algorithm capable of evolving black holes in 3D asymptotically flat spacetimes. Using compactification techniques, future null infinity is included in the evolved region, which enables the unambiguous calculation of the radiation produced by some compact source. A module to calculate the waveforms is constructed and included in the evolution algorithm.
Results This code is shown to be second-order convergent and to handle highly non-linear spacetimes. In particular, we have shown that the code can handle spacetimes whose radiation is equivalent to a galaxy converting its whole mass into gravitational radiation in one second. We further use the characteristic formulation to treat the region close to the singularity in black hole spacetimes. The code carefully excises a region surrounding the singularity and accurately evolves generic black hole spacetimes with apparently unlimited stability.
Keywords gravitational radiation (GR) spacetimes black holes
We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.
Belcher, Wendy Laura. 2009. Writing Your Journal Article in Twelve Weeks: A Guide to Academic Publishing Success. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Press.
Kilborn, Judith. 1998. “Writing Abstracts.” LEO: Literacy Education Online. Last updated October 20, 1998. https://leo.stcloudstate.edu/bizwrite/abstracts.html .
Koopman, Philip. 1997. “How to Write an Abstract.” Carnegie Mellon University. October 1997. http://users.ece.cmu.edu/~koopman/essays/abstract.html .
Lancaster, F.W. 2003. Indexing And Abstracting in Theory and Practice , 3rd ed. London: Facet Publishing.
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15 Amazing Abstract Examples
What is an Abstract / Definition
An abstract is a carefully worded synopsis of an academic article or research. However, there is a lot more to a successful abstract than just writing a summary.
This article will provide you with abstract examples. These abstract examples will help you understand what an abstract is and what it is not. After reading this article, you will also be able to understand the appropriate tone, style, and length of an abstract.
These abstract examples will also show you how varied abstracts can be, depending on the subject area. An abstract for original empirical research in the sciences or social sciences will be much different than the abstract for an article in the humanities.
What is the Purpose of an Abstract?
All the abstract examples you will receive share in common several features. All abstracts are designed to encapsulate the main points of the research article.
Think of an abstract as the back cover of a book. You often judge the contents of the book by what you read on the back jacket, which then helps you to determine whether or not you want to purchase the book.
Many research articles are published in academic databases, but the reader may need to pay for the final copy. The abstract helps the reader determine whether or not to purchase the article.
In cases where you are a student or a researcher, the abstract lets you know if it is worth your time reading the entire article.
Another purpose of an abstract is to help you promote future research in your field. An abstract contains keywords , which helps you and other researchers will use to locate your article.
Writing a good abstract makes you a more professional writer, and is essential for graduate level studies.
You may use your abstract to submit your research to peer-reviewed journals or to solicit funding for a grant.
What Does an Abstract Contain?
What the abstract contains depends largely on the type of study, the research design, and the subject area. Some of the elements that an abstract might contain include a brief background statement introducing the importance of the research, a problem statement, methodologies used in the research, a synopsis of the results, and the conclusions or implications.
Although the most important thing to keep in mind when writing an abstract is brevity , you also need to fit a lot of pertinent information in a relatively small space.
When you read the following abstract examples, you will have a better understanding of how to achieve the right balance between too much information and too little.
Also, you will see how to format abstracts in different ways, depending on the requirements of your degree program, or the editorial guidelines for a publication you are submitting to.
Types of Abstract
According to the Purdue Online Writing Lab resource, there are two different types of abstract : informational and descriptive.
Although informative and descriptive abstracts seem similar, they are different in a few key ways.
An informative abstract contains all the information related to the research, including the results and the conclusion.
A descriptive abstract is typically much shorter, and does not provide as much information. Rather, the descriptive abstract just tells the reader what the research or the article is about and not much more.
The descriptive abstract is more of a tagline or a teaser, whereas the informative abstract is more like a summary.
You will find both types of abstracts in the examples below.
Informative abstract example 1.
Emotional intelligence (EQ) has been correlated with leadership effectiveness in organizations. Using a mixed-methods approach, this study assesses the importance of emotional intelligence on academic performance at the high school level. The Emotional Intelligence rating scale was used, as well as semi-structured interviews with teachers. Participant grades were collected. Emotional intelligence was found to correlate positively with academic success. Implications for pedagogical practice are discussed.
This is a typical informative abstract for empirical social sciences research. Most informative abstracts proceed in a logical fashion to reflect the organization of the main paper: with sections on the background, methods, results, and conclusions.
Informative Abstract Example 2
Social learning takes place through observations of others within a community. In diverse urban landscapes and through digital media, social learning may be qualitatively different from the social learning that takes place within families and tightly knit social circles. This study examines the differences between social learning that takes place in the home versus social learning that takes place from watching celebrities and other role models online. Results show that social learning takes place with equal efficacy. These results show that social learning does not just take place within known social circles, and that observations of others can lead to multiple types of learning.
This is a typical informative abstract for empirical social science research. After the background statement, the author discusses the problem statement or research question, followed by the results and the conclusions.
Informative Abstract Example 3
Few studies have examined the connection between visual imagery and emotional reactions to news media consumption. This study addresses the gap in the literature via the use of content analysis. Content analysis methods were used to analyze five news media television sites over the course of six months. Using the Yolanda Metrics method, the researchers ascertained ten main words that were used throughout each of the news media sites. Implications and suggestions for future research are included.
This abstract provides an informative synopsis of a quantitative study on content analysis. The author provides the background information, addresses the methods, and also outlines the conclusions of the research.
Informative Abstract Example 4
This study explores the relationship between nurse educator theoretical viewpoints and nursing outcomes. Using a qualitative descriptive study, the researchers conducted face-to-face interviews with nursing students and nurse educators. The results show that nurse educator theoretical viewpoints had a direct bearing on nurse self-concept. Nurse educators should be cognizant of their biases and theoretical viewpoints when instructing students.
This example showcases how to write an abstract for a qualitative study. Qualitative studies also have clearly defined research methods. Therefore, it is important to keep in mind the general principles of informative abstract writing. Always begin with the research question or problem statement, and proceed to offer a one-sentence description of study methods and results.
Informative Abstract Example 5
Aboriginal people have poorer health outcomes versus their counterparts from other ethnic groups. In this study, public health researchers conducted an epidemiological data analysis using results from the Transcultural Health Report. Using a chi-square test, the researchers found that there is a direct correlation between ethnicity and health status, Policymakers should consider introducing methods for reducing health disparities among minority groups.
This informative abstract details the methods used in the report. As with other informative abstracts, it is written in the past tense. The abstract provides the reader with a summary of the research that has already been conducted.
Informative Abstract Example 6
We examine the contradictions of decolonization as official state policy. Using themes related to decolonization from the literature, we discuss how oppressed people develop cogent policies that create new systems of power. Intersectionality is also discussed. Through a historical analysis, it was found that decolonization and political identity construction take place not as reactionary pathways but as deliberate means of regaining access to power and privilege. The cultivation of new political and social identities promotes social cohesion in formerly colonized nation-states, paving the way for future means of identity construction.
This abstract is informative but because it does not involve a unique empirical research design, it is written in a different manner from other informative abstracts. The researchers use tone, style, and diction that parallels that which takes place within the body of the text. The main themes are elucidated.
Informative Abstract Example 7
The implementation of a nationwide mandatory vaccination program against influenza in the country of Maconda was designed to lower rates of preventable illnesses. This study was designed to measure the cost-effectiveness of the mandatory vaccination program.
This is a cohort study designed to assess the rates of new influenza cases among both children (age > 8 years) and adults (age > 18 years). Using the National Reference Data Report of Maconda, the researchers compiled new case data (n = 2034) from 2014 to 2018.
A total of 45 new cases were reported during the years of 2014 and 2015, and after that, the number of new cases dropped by 74%.
The significant decrease in new influenza cases can be attributed to the introduction of the mandatory vaccination.
The mandatory vaccination program proves cost-effective given its efficacy in controlling the disease.
This method of writing an informative abstract divides the content into respective subject headers. This style makes the abstract easier for some readers to scan quickly.
Informative Abstract Example 8
Mindfulness-based meditation and mindfulness-based stress reduction techniques have been shown to reduce burnout and improve employee engagement. Using a pre-test/post-test design, the researchers randomly assigned nurses (n = 136) to the control and experimental groups. The Kabat-Zinn mindfulness-based stress reduction technique was used as the primary intervention for the experimental group. Quantitative findings revealed significant improvements on self-report scales for depression and anxiety. Nurse leaders and administrators should consider implementing a mindfulness-based stress reduction program to reduce burnout and improve overall nurse performance.
This abstract contains all the necessary information you would need to make an assessment of whether the research was pertinent to your study. When you are writing an informative abstract, consider taking one sentence from each of the sections in your research (introduction/background, methods, results, and conclusion).
Descriptive Abstract Example 1
What inspires individuals to become members of a new religious movement, or a “cult”? This review of literature offers some suggestions as to the psychological and sociological motivations for joining a new religious movement, offering suggestions for future research.
Unlike informative abstracts, descriptive abstracts simply alert the reader of the main gist of the article. Reading this abstract does not tell you exactly what the researchers found out about their subject, but it does let the reader know what the overall subject matter was and the methods used to conduct the research.
Descriptive Abstract Example 2
With few remaining survivors of the Holocaust, it becomes critical for historians to gather as much data that can contribute to an overall understanding of the ways trauma has been incorporated into identity. Interviews with five Holocaust survivors reveal new information about the role that art and music played in self-healing and community healing.
This descriptive abstract does not give too much information away, simply telling the reader that the researcher used interviews and a case study research design. Although it is a brief description of the study, the researchers succinctly summarize the contents and results.
Descriptive Abstract Example 3
Absurdist theater and literature have had a strong influence on playwrights in France and England. This analysis of absurdist theater addresses the primary symbols being used in absurdist literature and traces the evolution of those symbols as they parallel historical events.
As with most descriptive abstracts, this example is short. You can use descriptive abstracts to provide the reader with a summary of non-empirical research such as literary criticism.
Descriptive Abstract Example 4
The architecture of Oscar Niemeyer reflects socialist sensibilities in the urban planning of Brasilia. This research explores the philosophical underpinnings of Niemeyer’s design through an analysis of several of the main elements of the National Congress of Brazil. Implications and influences of Niemeyer’s work are also discussed.
Note how with the descriptive abstract, you are writing about the research in a more abstract and detached way than when you write an informative abstract.
Descriptive Abstract Example 5
Jacques Derrida has written extensively on the symbolism and the metonymy of September 11. In this research, we critique Derrida’s position, on the grounds that terrorism is better understood from within a neo-realist framework. Derrida’s analysis lacks coherence, is pompous and verbose, and is unnecessarily abstract when considering the need for a cogent counterterrorist strategy.
Like most descriptive abstracts, this encapsulates the main idea of the research but does not necessarily follow the same format as you might use in an informative abstract. Whereas an informative abstract follows the chronological format used in the paper you present, with introduction, methods, findings, and conclusion, a descriptive abstract only focuses on the main idea.
Descriptive Abstract Example 6
The Five Factor model of personality has been well established in the literature and is one of the most reliable and valid methods of assessing success. In this study, we use the Five Factor model to show when the qualities of neuroticism and introversion, which have been typically linked with low rates of success, are actually correlated with achievement in certain job sectors. Implications and suggestions for clinicians are discussed.
This descriptive abstract does not discuss the methodology used in the research, which is what differentiates it from an informative abstract. However, the description does include the basic elements contained in the report.
Descriptive Abstract Example 7
This is a case study of a medium-sized company, analyzing the competencies required for entering into the Indian retail market. Focusing on Mumbai and Bangalore, the expansion into these markets reveals potential challenges for European firms. A comparison case with a failed expansion into Wuhan, China is given, offering an explanation for how there are no global cross-cultural competencies that can be applied in all cases.
While this descriptive abstract shows the reader what the paper addresses, the methods and results are omitted. A descriptive abstract is shorter than an informative abstract.
Which Type of Abstract Should I Use?
Check with your professors or academic advisors, or with the editor of the peer-reviewed journal before determining which type of abstract is right for you.
If you have conducted original empirical research in the social sciences, you will most likely want to use an informative abstract.
However, when you are writing about the arts or humanities, a descriptive abstract might work best.
What Information Should I Include in An Abstract?
The information you include in the abstract will depend on the substantive content of your report.
Consider breaking down your abstract into five separate components, corresponding roughly with the structure of your original research.
You can write one or two sentences on each of these sections:
For Original Empirical Research
I. Background/Introductory Sentence
If you have conducted, or are going to conduct, an original research, then consider the following elements for your abstract:
What was your hypothesis?
What has the previous literature said about your subject?
What was the gap in the literature you are filling with your research?
What are the research questions?
What problem are you trying to solve?
What theoretical viewpoint or approach did you take?
What was your research design (qualitative, quantitative, multi-factorial, mixed-methods)?
What was the setting? Did you conduct a clinical analysis? Or did you conduct a systematic review of literature or a meta-analysis of data?
How many subjects were there?
How did you collect data?
How did you analyze the data?
What methodological weaknesses need to be mentioned?
If this was a qualitative study, what were the major findings?
If this was a quantitative study, what were the major findings? Was there an alpha coefficient? What was the standard deviation?
Were the results statistically significant?
Did the results prove or disprove the hypothesis ?
Were the results significant enough to inform future research?
How do your results link up with previous research? Does your research confirm or go beyond prior literature?
What do your results say about the research question or problem statement?
If you had to make a policy recommendation or offer suggestions to other scholars, what would you say?
Are there any concluding thoughts or overarching impressions?
Writing Abstracts for Literary Criticism and Humanities Research
Writing abstracts for research that is not empirical in nature does not involve the same steps as you might use when composing an abstract for the sciences or social sciences.
When writing an abstract for the arts and humanities, consider the following outline, writing one or two sentences for each section:
What other scholars have said before.
Why you agree or disagree.
Why this is important to study.
II. Your methods or approach
How did you conduct your research?
Did you analyze a specific text, case study, or work of art?
Are you comparing and contrasting?
What philosophical or theoretical model did you use?
What did you discover in the course of your research?
How are your findings meaningful?
What new discoveries have you made?
How does your work contribute to the discourse?
General Tips for Writing Abstracts
The best way to improve your abstract writing skills is to read more abstracts. When you read other abstracts, you will understand more about what is expected, and what you should include or leave out from the abstract.
Reading abstracts helps you become more familiar with the tone and style, as well as the structure of abstracts.
Write your abstract after you have completed your research.
Many successful abstracts actually take the first sentence from each section of your research, such as the introduction/background, review of literature, methods, results, discussion, and conclusion.
Although it is a good idea to write the results of your original research, avoid giving too much detail. Instead, focus on what really matters.
A good abstract is like an elevator pitch.
While there is no absolute rule for how long an abstract should be, a general rule of thumb is around 100-150 words. However, some descriptive abstracts may be shorter than that, and some informative abstracts could be longer.
Abstracts are even shorter versions of executive summaries. Although abstracts are brief and seem relatively easy, they can be challenging to write. If you are struggling to write your abstract, just consider the main ideas of your original research paper and pretend that you are summarizing that research for a friend.
If you would like more examples of strong abstracts in your field of research, or need help composing your abstract or conducting research, call a writing tutor.
“Abstracts,” (n.d.). The Writing Center. https://writingcenter.unc.edu/tips-and-tools/abstracts/
Koopman, P. (1997). How to write an abstract. https://users.ece.cmu.edu/~koopman/essays/abstract.html
University of Massachusetts, Amherst (n.d.). Writing an abstract.
“Writing Report Abstracts,” (n.d.). Purdue Online Writing Lab. https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/656/1/
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Abstracts in Scientific Research Papers (IMRaD)
Abstracts in Scientific Research Papers (IMRaD)
An effective abstract in an IMRaD* report provides the reader with a concise, informative summary of the entire paper . An IMRaD abstract should stand on its own; it is not a part of the introduction. The abstract should clearly preview the paper’s content, allowing the reader to decide if the information is relevant to them and whether they should read the whole report. Abstracts should contain keywords and phrases that allow for easy searching online.
An IMRaD abstract is typically a single paragraph of 150-300 words. However, abstract conventions can vary by discipline or publication venue (e.g., journal). Because the IMRaD abstract is a concise summary of the whole paper, writers draft their abstracts after they have written a full draft of their IMRaD report.
* IMRaD refers to reports with the structure Introduction-Method-Results-Discussion used in empirical research in natural and social sciences. Please refer to the Writing Center quick guide “Writing an IMRaD Report” for more explanations.
Common Moves in Abstracts
An abstract contains elements of all sections of the IMRaD report: Introduction, Method, Results, and Discussion. The table below explains
The table is adapted from Doro, K. (2013). The rhetoric structure of research article abstracts in English studies journals. Prague Journal of English Studies , 2(1), 125-26. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/80769215.pdf and Samraj, B. (2005). An exploration of a genre set: Research article abstracts and introduction in two disciplines. English for Specific Purposes, 24, 141-56.
Simple text = Establishing the context
Italics = Stating the purpose/introducing the study
Underlined = Describing methodology
Bold = Presenting the results
Bolded Italics = Discussing the findings
Teachers’ social support and classroom management are related to secondary students’ achievement, domain-specific interest, and self-concept. However, little is known about whether social support and classroom management shape secondary students’ general school adjustment beyond these domain-specific outcomes. To investigate this question, we drew on data from a large longitudinal research project (N = 5,607 secondary students, N = 227 classes). We applied student and teacher ratings of social support and classroom management to investigate their perspective-specific validities for predicting student outcomes. To measure students’ school adjustment, we assessed achievement as a domain-specific indicator and school satisfaction, truancy, and self-esteem as more general aspects . Multilevel confirmatory factor analyses showed that both teachers and students distinguished between social support and classroom management. Teacher and student ratings of classroom management largely converged, whereas their perceptions of social support were not statistically significantly associated with one another. In multilevel structural equation modeling, both perspectives uniquely predicted students’ school adjustment: Student-rated social support was linked to all outcomes at the student level and to school satisfaction and self-esteem at the class level. Classroom management showed only weak associations with outcomes at the student level, but at the class level, student-rated classroom management was related to truancy and teacher-rated classroom management was linked to school satisfaction and student achievement. These findings highlight the important role of teachers in students’ general school adjustment and show the benefit of considering different perspectives and levels of analyses. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).
From Aldrup, K., Klusmann, U., Lüdtke, O., Göllner, R., & Trautwein, U. (2018). Social support and classroom management are related to secondary students’ general school adjustment: A multilevel structural equation model using student and teacher ratings. Journal of Educational Psychology, 110 (8), 1066–1083.
We present an algorithm for simultaneous face detection, landmarks localization, pose estimation and gender recognition using deep convolutional neural networks (CNN). The proposed method called, HyperFace, fuses the intermediate layers of a deep CNN using a separate CNN followed by a multi-task learning algorithm that operates on the fused features. It exploits the synergy among the tasks which boosts up their individual performances. Additionally, we propose two variants of HyperFace: (1) HyperFace-ResNet that builds on the ResNet-101 model and achieves significant improvement in performance, and (2) Fast-HyperFace that uses a high recall fast face detector for generating region proposals to improve the speed of the algorithm. Extensive experiments show that the proposed models are able to capture both global and local information in faces and performs significantly better than many competitive algorithms for each of these four tasks.
From Ranjan, R., Patel, V. M., and Chellappa, R. (2019). Hyperface: a deep multi-task learning framework for face detection, landmark localization, pose estimation, and gender recognition. IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence , 41(1), 121-135.
As can be seen from the two examples above, different disciplines and journals use introduction moves differently. Therefore, before writing an abstract for your study, you should read published IMRaD abstracts from your field to familiarize yourself with the conventions and expectations of your discipline.
Common Problems to Avoid in IMRaD Abstracts
- The abstract provides a statement of what the paper will ask or explore rather than what it found:
X This report examines the causes of oversleeping. (What did it find out about these causes?) √ Individuals oversleep because they go to bed too late, forget to set their alarms, and keep their rooms dark.
- The abstract provides general categories rather than specific details in the findings:
X The study draws conclusions about which variables are most important in choosing a movie theater. (What, specifically, are these variables?)
√ The study concludes that the most important variables in choosing a movie theater are comfortable seats and high-quality popcorn.
Activity to Help You Prepare for Writing an IMRaD Abstract
To prepare for writing IMRaD abstracts, find several IMRaD articles from journals in your discipline, and use the following questions to analyze the abstracts:
- How many paragraphs do the abstracts consist of? How many words do they contain?
- Which moves are present in these abstracts? Which are absent?
- Do the authors include citations in the abstracts? If they do, in which moves and for which purpuses?
- Which verb tenses are used in each move?
- Do the authors include numbers and statistics? If they do, in which moves?
- How many keywords are included at the end of the abstract? How do you think the authors decided which keyword to include?
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Cambridge Working Papers in Economics - Abstracts
Buda, G., Carvalho, V. M., Corsetti, G., Duarte, J. B., Hansen, S., Moura, A. S., Ortiz, A., Rodrigo, T., Rodríguez Mora, J. V., Alves da Silva, G.
Short and variable lags.
Abstract: We study the transmission of monetary policy shocks using daily consumption, corporate sales and employment series. We find that the economy responds at both short and long lags that are variable in economically significant ways. Consumption reacts in one week, reaches a local trough in one quarter, recovers, and declines again after three quarters. Sales follow a similar pattern, but the initial drop, while delayed (one month), is deeper. In contrast, employment falls monotonically for five quarters albeit with a smaller impact reaction. We show that these short lags are masked by time aggregation at lower —quarterly— frequencies.
Keywords: Economic Activity, Event-study, High-frequency data, Local projections, Monetary Policy
JEL Codes: E31 E43 E44 E52 E58
Author links: Vasco Carvalho Giancarlo Corsetti
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An abstract is a short summary of your (published or unpublished) research paper, usually about a paragraph (c. 6-7 sentences, 150-250 words) long. A well-written abstract serves multiple purposes: an abstract lets readers get the gist or essence of your paper or article quickly, in order to decide whether to read the full paper;
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Abstract: We study the transmission of monetary policy shocks using daily consumption, corporate sales and employment series. We find that the economy responds at both short and long lags that are variable in economically significant ways.