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How To Write A Research Summary

Deeptanshu D

It’s a common perception that writing a research summary is a quick and easy task. After all, how hard can jotting down 300 words be? But when you consider the weight those 300 words carry, writing a research summary as a part of your dissertation, essay or compelling draft for your paper instantly becomes daunting task.

A research summary requires you to synthesize a complex research paper into an informative, self-explanatory snapshot. It needs to portray what your article contains. Thus, writing it often comes at the end of the task list.

Regardless of when you’re planning to write, it is no less of a challenge, particularly if you’re doing it for the first time. This blog will take you through everything you need to know about research summary so that you have an easier time with it.

How to write a research summary

What is a Research Summary?

A research summary is the part of your research paper that describes its findings to the audience in a brief yet concise manner. A well-curated research summary represents you and your knowledge about the information written in the research paper.

While writing a quality research summary, you need to discover and identify the significant points in the research and condense it in a more straightforward form. A research summary is like a doorway that provides access to the structure of a research paper's sections.

Since the purpose of a summary is to give an overview of the topic, methodology, and conclusions employed in a paper, it requires an objective approach. No analysis or criticism.

Research summary or Abstract. What’s the Difference?

They’re both brief, concise, and give an overview of an aspect of the research paper. So, it’s easy to understand why many new researchers get the two confused. However, a research summary and abstract are two very different things with individual purpose. To start with, a research summary is written at the end while the abstract comes at the beginning of a research paper.

A research summary captures the essence of the paper at the end of your document. It focuses on your topic, methods, and findings. More like a TL;DR, if you will. An abstract, on the other hand, is a description of what your research paper is about. It tells your reader what your topic or hypothesis is, and sets a context around why you have embarked on your research.

Getting Started with a Research Summary

Before you start writing, you need to get insights into your research’s content, style, and organization. There are three fundamental areas of a research summary that you should focus on.

  • While deciding the contents of your research summary, you must include a section on its importance as a whole, the techniques, and the tools that were used to formulate the conclusion. Additionally, there needs to be a short but thorough explanation of how the findings of the research paper have a significance.
  • To keep the summary well-organized, try to cover the various sections of the research paper in separate paragraphs. Besides, how the idea of particular factual research came up first must be explained in a separate paragraph.
  • As a general practice worldwide, research summaries are restricted to 300-400 words. However, if you have chosen a lengthy research paper, try not to exceed the word limit of 10% of the entire research paper.

How to Structure Your Research Summary

The research summary is nothing but a concise form of the entire research paper. Therefore, the structure of a summary stays the same as the paper. So, include all the section titles and write a little about them. The structural elements that a research summary must consist of are:

It represents the topic of the research. Try to phrase it so that it includes the key findings or conclusion of the task.

The abstract gives a context of the research paper. Unlike the abstract at the beginning of a paper, the abstract here, should be very short since you’ll be working with a limited word count.

Introduction

This is the most crucial section of a research summary as it helps readers get familiarized with the topic. You should include the definition of your topic, the current state of the investigation, and practical relevance in this part. Additionally, you should present the problem statement, investigative measures, and any hypothesis in this section.

Methodology

This section provides details about the methodology and the methods adopted to conduct the study. You should write a brief description of the surveys, sampling, type of experiments, statistical analysis, and the rationality behind choosing those particular methods.

Create a list of evidence obtained from the various experiments with a primary analysis, conclusions, and interpretations made upon that. In the paper research paper, you will find the results section as the most detailed and lengthy part. Therefore, you must pick up the key elements and wisely decide which elements are worth including and which are worth skipping.

This is where you present the interpretation of results in the context of their application. Discussion usually covers results, inferences, and theoretical models explaining the obtained values, key strengths, and limitations. All of these are vital elements that you must include in the summary.

Most research papers merge conclusion with discussions. However, depending upon the instructions, you may have to prepare this as a separate section in your research summary. Usually, conclusion revisits the hypothesis and provides the details about the validation or denial about the arguments made in the research paper, based upon how convincing the results were obtained.

The structure of a research summary closely resembles the anatomy of a scholarly article . Additionally, you should keep your research and references limited to authentic and  scholarly sources only.

Tips for Writing a Research Summary

The core concept behind undertaking a research summary is to present a simple and clear understanding of your research paper to the reader. The biggest hurdle while doing that is the number of words you have at your disposal. So, follow the steps below to write a research summary that sticks.

1. Read the parent paper thoroughly

You should go through the research paper thoroughly multiple times to ensure that you have a complete understanding of its contents. A 3-stage reading process helps.

a. Scan: In the first read, go through it to get an understanding of its basic concept and methodologies.

b. Read: For the second step, read the article attentively by going through each section, highlighting the key elements, and subsequently listing the topics that you will include in your research summary.

c. Skim: Flip through the article a few more times to study the interpretation of various experimental results, statistical analysis, and application in different contexts.

Sincerely go through different headings and subheadings as it will allow you to understand the underlying concept of each section. You can try reading the introduction and conclusion simultaneously to understand the motive of the task and how obtained results stay fit to the expected outcome.

2. Identify the key elements in different sections

While exploring different sections of an article, you can try finding answers to simple what, why, and how. Below are a few pointers to give you an idea:

  • What is the research question and how is it addressed?
  • Is there a hypothesis in the introductory part?
  • What type of methods are being adopted?
  • What is the sample size for data collection and how is it being analyzed?
  • What are the most vital findings?
  • Do the results support the hypothesis?

Discussion/Conclusion

  • What is the final solution to the problem statement?
  • What is the explanation for the obtained results?
  • What is the drawn inference?
  • What are the various limitations of the study?

3. Prepare the first draft

Now that you’ve listed the key points that the paper tries to demonstrate, you can start writing the summary following the standard structure of a research summary. Just make sure you’re not writing statements from the parent research paper verbatim.

Instead, try writing down each section in your own words. This will not only help in avoiding plagiarism but will also show your complete understanding of the subject. Alternatively, you can use a summarizing tool (AI-based summary generators) to shorten the content or summarize the content without disrupting the actual meaning of the article.

SciSpace Copilot is one such helpful feature! You can easily upload your research paper and ask Copilot to summarize it. You will get an AI-generated, condensed research summary. SciSpace Copilot also enables you to highlight text, clip math and tables, and ask any question relevant to the research paper; it will give you instant answers with deeper context of the article..

4. Include visuals

One of the best ways to summarize and consolidate a research paper is to provide visuals like graphs, charts, pie diagrams, etc.. Visuals make getting across the facts, the past trends, and the probabilistic figures around a concept much more engaging.

5. Double check for plagiarism

It can be very tempting to copy-paste a few statements or the entire paragraphs depending upon the clarity of those sections. But it’s best to stay away from the practice. Even paraphrasing should be done with utmost care and attention.

Also: QuillBot vs SciSpace: Choose the best AI-paraphrasing tool

6. Religiously follow the word count limit

You need to have strict control while writing different sections of a research summary. In many cases, it has been observed that the research summary and the parent research paper become the same length. If that happens, it can lead to discrediting of your efforts and research summary itself. Whatever the standard word limit has been imposed, you must observe that carefully.

7. Proofread your research summary multiple times

The process of writing the research summary can be exhausting and tiring. However, you shouldn’t allow this to become a reason to skip checking your academic writing several times for mistakes like misspellings, grammar, wordiness, and formatting issues. Proofread and edit until you think your research summary can stand out from the others, provided it is drafted perfectly on both technicality and comprehension parameters. You can also seek assistance from editing and proofreading services , and other free tools that help you keep these annoying grammatical errors at bay.

8. Watch while you write

Keep a keen observation of your writing style. You should use the words very precisely, and in any situation, it should not represent your personal opinions on the topic. You should write the entire research summary in utmost impersonal, precise, factually correct, and evidence-based writing.

9. Ask a friend/colleague to help

Once you are done with the final copy of your research summary, you must ask a friend or colleague to read it. You must test whether your friend or colleague could grasp everything without referring to the parent paper. This will help you in ensuring the clarity of the article.

Once you become familiar with the research paper summary concept and understand how to apply the tips discussed above in your current task, summarizing a research summary won’t be that challenging. While traversing the different stages of your academic career, you will face different scenarios where you may have to create several research summaries.

In such cases, you just need to look for answers to simple questions like “Why this study is necessary,” “what were the methods,” “who were the participants,” “what conclusions were drawn from the research,” and “how it is relevant to the wider world.” Once you find out the answers to these questions, you can easily create a good research summary following the standard structure and a precise writing style.

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Home » Research Summary – Structure, Examples and Writing Guide

Research Summary – Structure, Examples and Writing Guide

Table of Contents

Research Summary

Research Summary

Definition:

A research summary is a brief and concise overview of a research project or study that highlights its key findings, main points, and conclusions. It typically includes a description of the research problem, the research methods used, the results obtained, and the implications or significance of the findings. It is often used as a tool to quickly communicate the main findings of a study to other researchers, stakeholders, or decision-makers.

Structure of Research Summary

The Structure of a Research Summary typically include:

  • Introduction : This section provides a brief background of the research problem or question, explains the purpose of the study, and outlines the research objectives.
  • Methodology : This section explains the research design, methods, and procedures used to conduct the study. It describes the sample size, data collection methods, and data analysis techniques.
  • Results : This section presents the main findings of the study, including statistical analysis if applicable. It may include tables, charts, or graphs to visually represent the data.
  • Discussion : This section interprets the results and explains their implications. It discusses the significance of the findings, compares them to previous research, and identifies any limitations or future directions for research.
  • Conclusion : This section summarizes the main points of the research and provides a conclusion based on the findings. It may also suggest implications for future research or practical applications of the results.
  • References : This section lists the sources cited in the research summary, following the appropriate citation style.

How to Write Research Summary

Here are the steps you can follow to write a research summary:

  • Read the research article or study thoroughly: To write a summary, you must understand the research article or study you are summarizing. Therefore, read the article or study carefully to understand its purpose, research design, methodology, results, and conclusions.
  • Identify the main points : Once you have read the research article or study, identify the main points, key findings, and research question. You can highlight or take notes of the essential points and findings to use as a reference when writing your summary.
  • Write the introduction: Start your summary by introducing the research problem, research question, and purpose of the study. Briefly explain why the research is important and its significance.
  • Summarize the methodology : In this section, summarize the research design, methods, and procedures used to conduct the study. Explain the sample size, data collection methods, and data analysis techniques.
  • Present the results: Summarize the main findings of the study. Use tables, charts, or graphs to visually represent the data if necessary.
  • Interpret the results: In this section, interpret the results and explain their implications. Discuss the significance of the findings, compare them to previous research, and identify any limitations or future directions for research.
  • Conclude the summary : Summarize the main points of the research and provide a conclusion based on the findings. Suggest implications for future research or practical applications of the results.
  • Revise and edit : Once you have written the summary, revise and edit it to ensure that it is clear, concise, and free of errors. Make sure that your summary accurately represents the research article or study.
  • Add references: Include a list of references cited in the research summary, following the appropriate citation style.

Example of Research Summary

Here is an example of a research summary:

Title: The Effects of Yoga on Mental Health: A Meta-Analysis

Introduction: This meta-analysis examines the effects of yoga on mental health. The study aimed to investigate whether yoga practice can improve mental health outcomes such as anxiety, depression, stress, and quality of life.

Methodology : The study analyzed data from 14 randomized controlled trials that investigated the effects of yoga on mental health outcomes. The sample included a total of 862 participants. The yoga interventions varied in length and frequency, ranging from four to twelve weeks, with sessions lasting from 45 to 90 minutes.

Results : The meta-analysis found that yoga practice significantly improved mental health outcomes. Participants who practiced yoga showed a significant reduction in anxiety and depression symptoms, as well as stress levels. Quality of life also improved in those who practiced yoga.

Discussion : The findings of this study suggest that yoga can be an effective intervention for improving mental health outcomes. The study supports the growing body of evidence that suggests that yoga can have a positive impact on mental health. Limitations of the study include the variability of the yoga interventions, which may affect the generalizability of the findings.

Conclusion : Overall, the findings of this meta-analysis support the use of yoga as an effective intervention for improving mental health outcomes. Further research is needed to determine the optimal length and frequency of yoga interventions for different populations.

References :

  • Cramer, H., Lauche, R., Langhorst, J., Dobos, G., & Berger, B. (2013). Yoga for depression: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Depression and anxiety, 30(11), 1068-1083.
  • Khalsa, S. B. (2004). Yoga as a therapeutic intervention: a bibliometric analysis of published research studies. Indian journal of physiology and pharmacology, 48(3), 269-285.
  • Ross, A., & Thomas, S. (2010). The health benefits of yoga and exercise: a review of comparison studies. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 16(1), 3-12.

Purpose of Research Summary

The purpose of a research summary is to provide a brief overview of a research project or study, including its main points, findings, and conclusions. The summary allows readers to quickly understand the essential aspects of the research without having to read the entire article or study.

Research summaries serve several purposes, including:

  • Facilitating comprehension: A research summary allows readers to quickly understand the main points and findings of a research project or study without having to read the entire article or study. This makes it easier for readers to comprehend the research and its significance.
  • Communicating research findings: Research summaries are often used to communicate research findings to a wider audience, such as policymakers, practitioners, or the general public. The summary presents the essential aspects of the research in a clear and concise manner, making it easier for non-experts to understand.
  • Supporting decision-making: Research summaries can be used to support decision-making processes by providing a summary of the research evidence on a particular topic. This information can be used by policymakers or practitioners to make informed decisions about interventions, programs, or policies.
  • Saving time: Research summaries save time for researchers, practitioners, policymakers, and other stakeholders who need to review multiple research studies. Rather than having to read the entire article or study, they can quickly review the summary to determine whether the research is relevant to their needs.

Characteristics of Research Summary

The following are some of the key characteristics of a research summary:

  • Concise : A research summary should be brief and to the point, providing a clear and concise overview of the main points of the research.
  • Objective : A research summary should be written in an objective tone, presenting the research findings without bias or personal opinion.
  • Comprehensive : A research summary should cover all the essential aspects of the research, including the research question, methodology, results, and conclusions.
  • Accurate : A research summary should accurately reflect the key findings and conclusions of the research.
  • Clear and well-organized: A research summary should be easy to read and understand, with a clear structure and logical flow.
  • Relevant : A research summary should focus on the most important and relevant aspects of the research, highlighting the key findings and their implications.
  • Audience-specific: A research summary should be tailored to the intended audience, using language and terminology that is appropriate and accessible to the reader.
  • Citations : A research summary should include citations to the original research articles or studies, allowing readers to access the full text of the research if desired.

When to write Research Summary

Here are some situations when it may be appropriate to write a research summary:

  • Proposal stage: A research summary can be included in a research proposal to provide a brief overview of the research aims, objectives, methodology, and expected outcomes.
  • Conference presentation: A research summary can be prepared for a conference presentation to summarize the main findings of a study or research project.
  • Journal submission: Many academic journals require authors to submit a research summary along with their research article or study. The summary provides a brief overview of the study’s main points, findings, and conclusions and helps readers quickly understand the research.
  • Funding application: A research summary can be included in a funding application to provide a brief summary of the research aims, objectives, and expected outcomes.
  • Policy brief: A research summary can be prepared as a policy brief to communicate research findings to policymakers or stakeholders in a concise and accessible manner.

Advantages of Research Summary

Research summaries offer several advantages, including:

  • Time-saving: A research summary saves time for readers who need to understand the key findings and conclusions of a research project quickly. Rather than reading the entire research article or study, readers can quickly review the summary to determine whether the research is relevant to their needs.
  • Clarity and accessibility: A research summary provides a clear and accessible overview of the research project’s main points, making it easier for readers to understand the research without having to be experts in the field.
  • Improved comprehension: A research summary helps readers comprehend the research by providing a brief and focused overview of the key findings and conclusions, making it easier to understand the research and its significance.
  • Enhanced communication: Research summaries can be used to communicate research findings to a wider audience, such as policymakers, practitioners, or the general public, in a concise and accessible manner.
  • Facilitated decision-making: Research summaries can support decision-making processes by providing a summary of the research evidence on a particular topic. Policymakers or practitioners can use this information to make informed decisions about interventions, programs, or policies.
  • Increased dissemination: Research summaries can be easily shared and disseminated, allowing research findings to reach a wider audience.

Limitations of Research Summary

Limitations of the Research Summary are as follows:

  • Limited scope: Research summaries provide a brief overview of the research project’s main points, findings, and conclusions, which can be limiting. They may not include all the details, nuances, and complexities of the research that readers may need to fully understand the study’s implications.
  • Risk of oversimplification: Research summaries can be oversimplified, reducing the complexity of the research and potentially distorting the findings or conclusions.
  • Lack of context: Research summaries may not provide sufficient context to fully understand the research findings, such as the research background, methodology, or limitations. This may lead to misunderstandings or misinterpretations of the research.
  • Possible bias: Research summaries may be biased if they selectively emphasize certain findings or conclusions over others, potentially distorting the overall picture of the research.
  • Format limitations: Research summaries may be constrained by the format or length requirements, making it challenging to fully convey the research’s main points, findings, and conclusions.
  • Accessibility: Research summaries may not be accessible to all readers, particularly those with limited literacy skills, visual impairments, or language barriers.

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Writing an article summary.

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When writing a summary, the goal is to compose a concise and objective overview of the original article. The summary should focus only on the article's main ideas and important details that support those ideas.

Guidelines for summarizing an article:

  • State the main ideas.
  • Identify the most important details that support the main ideas.
  • Summarize in your own words.
  • Do not copy phrases or sentences unless they are being used as direct quotations.
  • Express the underlying meaning of the article, but do not critique or analyze.
  • The summary should be about one third the length of the original article. 

Your summary should include:

  • Give an overview of the article, including the title and the name of the author.
  • Provide a thesis statement that states the main idea of the article.
  • Use the body paragraphs to explain the supporting ideas of your thesis statement.
  • One-paragraph summary - one sentence per supporting detail, providing 1-2 examples for each.
  • Multi-paragraph summary - one paragraph per supporting detail, providing 2-3 examples for each.
  • Start each paragraph with a topic sentence.
  • Use transitional words and phrases to connect ideas.
  • Summarize your thesis statement and the underlying meaning of the article.

 Adapted from "Guidelines for Using In-Text Citations in a Summary (or Research Paper)" by Christine Bauer-Ramazani, 2020

Additional Resources

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How to Write a Summary - Guide & Examples  (from Scribbr.com)

Writing a Summary  (from The University of Arizona Global Campus Writing Center)

  • Next: Writing an article REVIEW >>
  • Last Updated: Mar 15, 2024 9:32 AM
  • URL: https://libguides.randolph.edu/summaries

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  • How to Write a Summary | Guide & Examples

How to Write a Summary | Guide & Examples

Published on 25 September 2022 by Shona McCombes . Revised on 12 May 2023.

Summarising , or writing a summary, means giving a concise overview of a text’s main points in your own words. A summary is always much shorter than the original text.

There are five key steps that can help you to write a summary:

  • Read the text
  • Break it down into sections
  • Identify the key points in each section
  • Write the summary
  • Check the summary against the article

Writing a summary does not involve critiquing or analysing the source. You should simply provide an accurate account of the most important information and ideas (without copying any text from the original).

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Table of contents

When to write a summary, step 1: read the text, step 2: break the text down into sections, step 3: identify the key points in each section, step 4: write the summary, step 5: check the summary against the article, frequently asked questions.

There are many situations in which you might have to summarise an article or other source:

  • As a stand-alone assignment to show you’ve understood the material
  • To keep notes that will help you remember what you’ve read
  • To give an overview of other researchers’ work in a literature review

When you’re writing an academic text like an essay , research paper , or dissertation , you’ll integrate sources in a variety of ways. You might use a brief quote to support your point, or paraphrase a few sentences or paragraphs.

But it’s often appropriate to summarize a whole article or chapter if it is especially relevant to your own research, or to provide an overview of a source before you analyse or critique it.

In any case, the goal of summarising is to give your reader a clear understanding of the original source. Follow the five steps outlined below to write a good summary.

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You should read the article more than once to make sure you’ve thoroughly understood it. It’s often effective to read in three stages:

  • Scan the article quickly to get a sense of its topic and overall shape.
  • Read the article carefully, highlighting important points and taking notes as you read.
  • Skim the article again to confirm you’ve understood the key points, and reread any particularly important or difficult passages.

There are some tricks you can use to identify the key points as you read:

  • Start by reading the abstract . This already contains the author’s own summary of their work, and it tells you what to expect from the article.
  • Pay attention to headings and subheadings . These should give you a good sense of what each part is about.
  • Read the introduction and the conclusion together and compare them: What did the author set out to do, and what was the outcome?

To make the text more manageable and understand its sub-points, break it down into smaller sections.

If the text is a scientific paper that follows a standard empirical structure, it is probably already organised into clearly marked sections, usually including an introduction, methods, results, and discussion.

Other types of articles may not be explicitly divided into sections. But most articles and essays will be structured around a series of sub-points or themes.

Now it’s time go through each section and pick out its most important points. What does your reader need to know to understand the overall argument or conclusion of the article?

Keep in mind that a summary does not involve paraphrasing every single paragraph of the article. Your goal is to extract the essential points, leaving out anything that can be considered background information or supplementary detail.

In a scientific article, there are some easy questions you can ask to identify the key points in each part.

If the article takes a different form, you might have to think more carefully about what points are most important for the reader to understand its argument.

In that case, pay particular attention to the thesis statement —the central claim that the author wants us to accept, which usually appears in the introduction—and the topic sentences that signal the main idea of each paragraph.

Now that you know the key points that the article aims to communicate, you need to put them in your own words.

To avoid plagiarism and show you’ve understood the article, it’s essential to properly paraphrase the author’s ideas. Do not copy and paste parts of the article, not even just a sentence or two.

The best way to do this is to put the article aside and write out your own understanding of the author’s key points.

Examples of article summaries

Let’s take a look at an example. Below, we summarise this article , which scientifically investigates the old saying ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’.

An article summary like the above would be appropriate for a stand-alone summary assignment. However, you’ll often want to give an even more concise summary of an article.

For example, in a literature review or research paper, you may want to briefly summarize this study as part of a wider discussion of various sources. In this case, we can boil our summary down even further to include only the most relevant information.

Citing the source you’re summarizing

When including a summary as part of a larger text, it’s essential to properly cite the source you’re summarizing. The exact format depends on your citation style , but it usually includes an in-text citation and a full reference at the end of your paper.

You can easily create your citations and references in APA or MLA using our free citation generators.

APA Citation Generator MLA Citation Generator

Finally, read through the article once more to ensure that:

  • You’ve accurately represented the author’s work
  • You haven’t missed any essential information
  • The phrasing is not too similar to any sentences in the original.

If you’re summarising many articles as part of your own work, it may be a good idea to use a plagiarism checker to double-check that your text is completely original and properly cited. Just be sure to use one that’s safe and reliable.

A summary is a short overview of the main points of an article or other source, written entirely in your own words.

Save yourself some time with the free summariser.

A summary is always much shorter than the original text. The length of a summary can range from just a few sentences to several paragraphs; it depends on the length of the article you’re summarising, and on the purpose of the summary.

With the summariser tool you can easily adjust the length of your summary.

You might have to write a summary of a source:

  • As a stand-alone assignment to prove you understand the material
  • For your own use, to keep notes on your reading
  • To provide an overview of other researchers’ work in a literature review
  • In a paper , to summarise or introduce a relevant study

To avoid plagiarism when summarising an article or other source, follow these two rules:

  • Write the summary entirely in your own words by   paraphrasing the author’s ideas.
  • Reference the source with an in-text citation and a full reference so your reader can easily find the original text.

An abstract concisely explains all the key points of an academic text such as a thesis , dissertation or journal article. It should summarise the whole text, not just introduce it.

An abstract is a type of summary , but summaries are also written elsewhere in academic writing . For example, you might summarise a source in a paper , in a literature review , or as a standalone assignment.

Cite this Scribbr article

If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the ‘Cite this Scribbr article’ button to automatically add the citation to our free Reference Generator.

McCombes, S. (2023, May 12). How to Write a Summary | Guide & Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved 25 March 2024, from https://www.scribbr.co.uk/working-sources/how-to-write-a-summary/

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Writing Article Summaries

  • Understanding Article Summaries 

Common Problems in Article Summaries

Read carefully and closely, structure of the summary, writing the summary.

  • Sample Outlines and Paragraphs

Understanding Article Summaries

An article summary is a short, focused paper about one scholarly article that is informed by a critical reading of that article. For argumentative articles, the summary identifies, explains, and analyses the thesis and supporting arguments; for empirical articles, the summary identifies, explains, and analyses the research questions, methods, findings, and implications of the study.

Although article summaries are often short and rarely account for a large portion of your grade, they are a strong indicator of your reading and writing skills. Professors ask you to write article summaries to help you to develop essential skills in critical reading, summarizing, and clear, organized writing. Furthermore, an article summary requires you to read a scholarly article quite closely, which provides a useful introduction to the conventions of writing in your discipline (e.g. Political Studies, Biology, or Anthropology).

The most common problem that students have when writing an article summary is that they misunderstand the goal of the assignment. In an article summary, your job is to write about the article, not about the actual topic of the article. For example, if you are summarizing Smith’s article about the causes of the Bubonic plague in Europe, your summary should be about Smith’s article: What does she want to find out about the plague? What evidence does she use? What is her argument? You are not writing a paper about the actual causes of Bubonic plague in Europe.

Further, as a part of critical reading, you will often consider your own position on a topic or an argument; it is tempting to include an assessment or opinion about the thesis or findings, but this is not the goal of an article summary. Rather, you must identify, explain, and analyse the main point and how it is supported.

Your key to success in writing an article summary is your understanding of the article; therefore, it is essential to read carefully and closely. The Academic Skills Centre offers helpful instruction on the steps for critical reading: pre-reading, active and analytical reading, and reflection.

Argumentative Articles

As you read an argumentative article, consider the following questions:

  • What is the topic?
  • What is the research question? In other words, what is the author trying to find out about that topic?
  • How does the author position his/her article in relation to other studies of the topic?
  • What is the thesis or position? What are the supporting arguments?
  • How are supporting arguments developed? What kind of evidence is used?
  • What is the significance of the author’s thesis? What does it help you to understand about the topic?

Empirical Articles

As you read an empirical article, consider the following questions:

  • What is the research question?
  • What are the predictions and the rationale for these predictions?
  • What methods were used (participants, sampling, materials, procedure)? What were the variables and controls?
  • What were the main results?
  • Are the findings supported by previous research?
  • What are the limitations of the study?
  • What are the implications or applications of the findings?

Create a Reverse Outline

Creating a reverse outline is one way to ensure that you fully understand the article. Pre-read the article (read the abstract, introduction, and/or conclusion). Summarize the main question(s) and thesis or findings. Skim subheadings and topic sentences to understand the organization; make notes in the margins about each section. Read each paragraph within a section; make short notes about the main idea or purpose of each paragraph. This strategy will help you to see how parts of the article connect to the main idea or the whole of the article.

A summary is written in paragraph form and generally does not include subheadings. An introduction is important to clearly identify the article, the topic, the question or purpose of the article, and its thesis or findings. The body paragraphs for a summary of an argumentative article will explain how arguments and evidence support the thesis. Alternatively, the body paragraphs of an empirical article summary may explain the methods and findings, making connections to predictions. The conclusion explains the significance of the argument or implications of the findings. This structure ensures that your summary is focused and clear.

Professors will often give you a list of required topics to include in your summary and/or explain how they want you to organize your summary. Make sure you read the assignment sheet with care and adapt the sample outlines below accordingly.

One significant challenge in writing an article summary is deciding what information or examples from the article to include. Remember, article summaries are much shorter than the article itself. You do not have the space to explain every point the author makes. Instead, you will need to explain the author’s main points and find a few excellent examples that illustrate these points.

You should also keep in mind that article summaries need to be written in your own words. Scholarly writing can use complex terminology to explain complicated ideas, which makes it difficult to understand and to summarize correctly. In the face of difficult text, many students tend to use direct quotations, saving them the time and energy required to understand and reword it. However, a summary requires you to summarize, which means “to state briefly or succinctly” (Oxford English Dictionary) the main ideas presented in a text. The brevity must come from you, in your own words, which demonstrates that you understand the article.

Sample Outlines and Paragraph

Sample outline for an argumentative article summary.

  • General topic of article
  • Author’s research question or approach to the topic
  • Author’s thesis
  • Explain some key points and how they support the thesis
  • Provide a key example or two that the author uses as evidence to support these points
  • Review how the main points work together to support the thesis?
  • How does the author explain the significance or implications of his/her article?

Sample Outline for an Empirical Article Summary

  • General topic of study
  • Author’s research question
  • Variables and hypotheses
  • Participants
  • Experiment design
  • Materials used
  • Key results
  • Did the results support the hypotheses?
  • Implications or applications of the study
  • Major limitations of the study

Sample Paragraph

The paragraph below is an example of an introductory paragraph from a summary of an empirical article:

Tavernier and Willoughby’s (2014) study explored the relationships between university students’ sleep and their intrapersonal, interpersonal, and educational development. While the authors cited many scholars who have explored these relationships, they pointed out that most of these studies focused on unidirectional correlations over a short period of time. In contrast, Tavernier and Willoughby tested whether there was a bidirectional or unidirectional association between participants’ sleep quality and duration and several psychosocial factors including intrapersonal adjustment, friendship quality, and academic achievement. Further they conducted a longitudinal study over a period of three years in order to determine whether there were changes in the strength or direction of these associations over time. They predicted that sleep quality would correlate with measures of intrapersonal adjustment, friendship quality, and academic achievement; they further hypothesized that this correlation would be bidirectional: sleep quality would predict psychosocial measures and at the same time, psychosocial measures would predict sleep quality.

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Research Summary: What is it & how to write one

research summary

The Research Summary is used to report facts about a study clearly. You will almost certainly be required to prepare a research summary during your academic research or while on a research project for your organization.

If it is the first time you have to write one, the writing requirements may confuse you. The instructors generally assign someone to write a summary of the research work. Research summaries require the writer to have a thorough understanding of the issue.

This article will discuss the definition of a research summary and how to write one.

What is a research summary?

A research summary is a piece of writing that summarizes your research on a specific topic. Its primary goal is to offer the reader a detailed overview of the study with the key findings. A research summary generally contains the article’s structure in which it is written.

You must know the goal of your analysis before you launch a project. A research overview summarizes the detailed response and highlights particular issues raised in it. Writing it might be somewhat troublesome. To write a good overview, you want to start with a structure in mind. Read on for our guide.

Why is an analysis recap so important?

Your summary or analysis is going to tell readers everything about your research project. This is the critical piece that your stakeholders will read to identify your findings and valuable insights. Having a good and concise research summary that presents facts and comes with no research biases is the critical deliverable of any research project.

We’ve put together a cheat sheet to help you write a good research summary below.

Research Summary Guide

  • Why was this research done?  – You want to give a clear description of why this research study was done. What hypothesis was being tested?
  • Who was surveyed? – The what and why or your research decides who you’re going to interview/survey. Your research summary has a detailed note on who participated in the study and why they were selected. 
  • What was the methodology? – Talk about the methodology. Did you do face-to-face interviews? Was it a short or long survey or a focus group setting? Your research methodology is key to the results you’re going to get. 
  • What were the key findings? – This can be the most critical part of the process. What did we find out after testing the hypothesis? This section, like all others, should be just facts, facts facts. You’re not sharing how you feel about the findings. Keep it bias-free.
  • Conclusion – What are the conclusions that were drawn from the findings. A good example of a conclusion. Surprisingly, most people interviewed did not watch the lunar eclipse in 2022, which is unexpected given that 100% of those interviewed knew about it before it happened.
  • Takeaways and action points – This is where you bring in your suggestion. Given the data you now have from the research, what are the takeaways and action points? If you’re a researcher running this research project for your company, you’ll use this part to shed light on your recommended action plans for the business.

LEARN ABOUT:   Action Research

If you’re doing any research, you will write a summary, which will be the most viewed and more important part of the project. So keep a guideline in mind before you start. Focus on the content first and then worry about the length. Use the cheat sheet/checklist in this article to organize your summary, and that’s all you need to write a great research summary!

But once your summary is ready, where is it stored? Most teams have multiple documents in their google drives, and it’s a nightmare to find projects that were done in the past. Your research data should be democratized and easy to use.

We at QuestionPro launched a research repository for research teams, and our clients love it. All your data is in one place, and everything is searchable, including your research summaries! 

Authors: Prachi, Anas

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  • NATURE INDEX
  • 20 March 2024

Is AI ready to mass-produce lay summaries of research articles?

  • Kamal Nahas 0

Kamal Nahas is a freelance science journalist based in Oxford, UK

You can also search for this author in PubMed   Google Scholar

AI chatbot use showing a tablet screen with language bubbles on top of it.

Generative AI might be a powerful tool in making research more accessible for scientists and the broader public alike. Credit: Getty

Thinking back to the early days of her PhD programme, Esther Osarfo-Mensah recalls struggling to keep up with the literature. “Sometimes, the wording or the way the information is presented actually makes it quite a task to get through a paper,” says the biophysicist at University College London. Lay summaries could be a time-saving solution. Short synopses of research articles written in plain language could help readers to decide which papers to focus on — but they aren’t common in scientific publishing. Now, the buzz around artificial intelligence (AI) has pushed software engineers to develop platforms that can mass produce these synopses.

Scientists are drawn to AI tools because they excel at crafting text in accessible language, and they might even produce clearer lay summaries than those written by people. A study 1 released last year looked at lay summaries published in one journal and found that those created by people were less readable than were the original abstracts — potentially because some researchers struggle to replace jargon with plain language or to decide which facts to include when condensing the information into a few lines.

AI lay-summary platforms come in a variety of forms (see ‘AI lay-summary tools’). Some allow researchers to import a paper and generate a summary; others are built into web servers, such as the bioRxiv preprint database.

AI lay-summary tools

Several AI resources have been developed to help readers glean information about research articles quickly. They offer different perks. Here are a few examples and how they work:

- SciSummary: This tool parses the sections of a paper to extract the key points and then runs those through the general-purpose large language model GPT-3.5 to transform them into a short summary written in plain language. Max Heckel, the tool’s founder, says it incorporates multimedia into the summary, too: “If it determines that a particular section of the summary is relevant to a figure or table, it will actually show that table or figure in line.”

- Scholarcy: This technology takes a different approach. Its founder, Phil Gooch, based in London, says the tool was trained on 25,000 papers to identify sentences containing verb phrases such as “has been shown to” that often carry key information about the study. It then uses a mixture of custom and open-source large language models to paraphrase those sentences in plain text. “You can actually create ten different types of summaries,” he adds, including one that lays out how the paper is related to previous publications.

- SciSpace: This tool was trained on a repository of more than 280 million data sets, including papers that people had manually annotated, to extract key information from articles. It uses a mixture of proprietary fine-tuned models and GPT-3.5 to craft the summary, says the company’s chief executive, Saikiran Chandha, based in San Francisco, California. “A user can ask questions on top of these summaries to further dig into the paper,” he notes, adding that the company plans to develop audio summaries that people can tune into on the go.

Benefits and drawbacks

Mass-produced lay summaries could yield a trove of benefits. Beyond helping scientists to speed-read the literature, the synopses can be disseminated to people with different levels of expertise, including members of the public. Osarfo-Mensah adds that AI summaries might also aid people who struggle with English. “Some people hide behind jargon because they don’t necessarily feel comfortable trying to explain it,” she says, but AI could help them to rework technical phrases. Max Heckel is the founder of SciSummary, a company in Columbus, Ohio, that offers a tool that allows users to import a paper to be summarized. The tool can also translate summaries into other languages, and is gaining popularity in Indonesia and Turkey, he says, arguing that it could topple language barriers and make science more accessible.

Despite these strides, some scientists feel that improvements are needed before we can rely on AI to describe studies accurately.

Will Ratcliff, an evolutionary biologist at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, argues that no tool can produce better text than can professional writers. Although researchers have different writing abilities, he invariably prefers reading scientific material produced by study authors over those generated by AI. “I like to see what the authors wrote. They put craft into it, and I find their abstract to be more informative,” he says.

summary of research article

Is ChatGPT making scientists hyper-productive? The highs and lows of using AI

Nana Mensah, a PhD student in computational biology at the Francis Crick Institute in London, adds that, unlike AI, people tend to craft a narrative when writing lay summaries, helping readers to understand the motivations behind each step of the study. He says, however, that one advantage of AI platforms is that they can write summaries at different reading levels, potentially broadening the audience. In his experience, however, these synopses might still include jargon that can confuse readers without specialist knowledge.

AI tools might even struggle to turn technical language into lay versions at all. Osarfo-Mensah works in biophysics, a field with many intricate parameters and equations. She found that an AI summary of one of her research articles excluded information from a whole section. If researchers were looking for a paper with those details and consulted the AI summary, they might abandon her paper and look for other work.

Andy Shepherd, scientific director at global technology company Envision Pharma Group in Horsham, UK, has in his spare time compared the performances of several AI tools to see how often they introduce blunders. He used eight text generators, including general ones and some that had been optimized to produce lay summaries. He then asked people with different backgrounds, such as health-care professionals and the public, to assess how clear, readable and useful lay summaries were for two papers.

“All of the platforms produced something that was coherent and read like a reasonable study, but a few of them introduced errors, and two of them actively reversed the conclusion of the paper,” he says. It’s easy for AI tools to make this mistake by, for instance, omitting the word ‘not’ in a sentence, he explains. Ratcliff cautions that AI summaries should be viewed as a tool’s “best guess” of what a paper is about, stressing that it can’t check facts.

Broader readership

The risk of AI summaries introducing errors is one concern among many. Another is that one benefit of such summaries — that they can help to share research more widely among the public — could also have drawbacks. The AI summaries posted alongside bioRxiv preprints, research articles that have yet to undergo peer review, are tailored to different levels of reader expertise, including that of the public. Osarfo-Mensah supports the effort to widen the reach of these works. “The public should feel more involved in science and feel like they have a stake in it, because at the end of the day, science isn’t done in a vacuum,” she says.

But others point out that this comes with the risk of making unreviewed and inaccurate research more accessible. Mensah says that academics “will be able to treat the article with the sort of caution that’s required”, but he isn’t sure that members of the public will always understand when a summary refers to unreviewed work. Lay summaries of preprints should come with a “hazard warning” informing the reader upfront that the material has yet to be reviewed, says Shepherd.

Why scientists trust AI too much — and what to do about it

“We agree entirely that preprints must be understood as not peer-reviewed when posted,” says John Inglis, co-founder of bioRxiv, who is based at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York. He notes that such a disclaimer can be found on the homepage of each preprint, and if a member of the public navigates to a preprint through a web search, they are first directed to the homepage displaying this disclaimer before they can access the summary. But the warning labels are not integrated into the summaries, so there is a risk that these could be shared on social media without the disclaimer. Inglis says bioRxiv is working with its partner ScienceCast, whose technology produces the synopses, on adding a note to each summary to negate this risk.

As is the case for many other nascent generative-AI technologies, humans are still working out the messaging that might be needed to ensure users are given adequate context. But if AI lay-summary tools can successfully mitigate these and other challenges, they might become a staple of scientific publishing.

doi: https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-024-00865-4

Wen, J. & Yi, L. Scientometrics 128 , 5791–5800 (2023).

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  • Stroke rehabilitation...

Stroke rehabilitation in adults: summary of updated NICE guidance

Linked practice.

Caring is the invisible piece of the stroke recovery puzzle

  • Related content
  • Peer review
  • Eugene Tang , NIHR clinical lecturer in general practice 1 ,
  • Nicola Moran , stroke physiotherapist 2 ,
  • Mark Cadman , lay member 3 4 ,
  • Stephen Hill , lay member 3 4 ,
  • Claire Sloan , health economist 3 ,
  • Elizabeth Warburton , consultant stroke physician 3 5
  • on behalf of the guideline committee
  • 1 Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University, UK
  • 2 Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Ireland
  • 3 National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, London
  • 4 Public representative
  • 5 Cambridge University Hospitals, Cambridge
  • Correspondence to E Tang ( eugene.tang{at}newcastle.ac.uk )

What you need to know

Stroke rehabilitation total therapy time should be based on the person’s needs, with the amount increasing to at least three hours a day on at least five days a week

Fatigue is common; use a validated scale for early assessment

Offer vision and hearing assessment

Consider referral to community participation programmes suited to the person’s rehabilitation goals

Introduction

Globally, stroke is the second leading cause of death and the third leading cause of death and disability combined. 1 Around 100 000 people have strokes each year, and around 1.3 million people in the UK have survived a stroke. 2 High quality rehabilitation can minimise the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social impacts for people who have had a stroke and their carers, and yield substantial cost savings to society. 3

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) first published guidance on stroke rehabilitation in adults in 2013. 4 The guidance was updated in October 2023 to include appraisal of new evidence. 5 This guideline summary covers selected new and updated recommendations in the 2023 update, and will focus on those most relevant to primary care and community rehabilitation settings.

Recommendations

NICE recommendations are based on systematic reviews of best available evidence and explicit consideration of cost effectiveness. When minimal evidence is available, recommendations are based on the guideline development group’s experience and opinion of what constitutes good practice. Evidence levels for the recommendations are given in italics in square brackets. Evidence certainty is based on GRADE criteria ( box 1 ).

GRADE Working Group grades of evidence

High certainty—we are very confident that the true effect lies close to that of the estimate of the effect.

Moderate certainty—we are moderately confident in the effect estimate: the true effect is likely to be close to the estimate of the effect, but there is a possibility that it is substantially different.

Low certainty—our confidence in the effect estimate is limited: the true effect may be substantially different from the estimate of the effect.

Very low certainty—we have very little confidence in the effect estimate: the true effect is likely to be substantially different from the estimate of effect.

Transfer of care from hospital to community

Before the person who has had a stroke is transferred from the hospital into the community, a prompt assessment should be carried out by members of the core multidisciplinary stroke rehabilitation team ( box 2 ). 5 Offer early supported discharge from the hospital to the community when people who have had a stroke can move from a bed to a chair independently, or with assistance, as long as a safe and secure environment can be provided. 4 5 Previously, early supported discharge was recommended for select people, however this recommendation was updated because qualitative research showed that rehabilitation support after hospital is often withdrawn from people who have had a stroke even when they need more rehabilitation or when the person thought it was too early.

Core multidisciplinary stroke rehabilitation team

Stroke rehabilitation, which comprises functional task practice, motor, cognitive, and visual rehabilitation, nutritional support, and communication and swallow therapy, is commenced within acute inpatient care in hospital and continued into the community for as long as it continues to help people who have had a stroke to achieve their treatment goals.

This is delivered by core members of the multidisciplinary team:

Stroke physician(s)

Physiotherapists

Occupational therapists

Speech and language therapists

Orthoptists

Clinical psychologists

Once the person has left hospital after having a stroke, continue their care and rehabilitation for as long as it continues to help them achieve their treatment goals.

[Recommendations based on a mixed methods analysis of qualitative and mostly low quality evidence from randomised controlled trials (including a Cochrane systematic review), and on the guideline committee’s experience and expertise]

Intensity of stroke rehabilitation

Increasing evidence suggests that greater doses and intensity of therapy improve motor function and functional independence measures. Evidence reviews of individual rehabilitation therapies found that intensive physiotherapy of one to two hours a day resulted in improvements in activities of daily living, and people who have had a stroke reported faster recovery, especially within the first six months, compared with usual care.

For people receiving occupational and speech and language therapies, the committee concluded that the number of studies to determine specific minutes of intervention was limited. However, in view of how therapy is delivered (such as joint sessions) and alongside the evidence for physiotherapy, a recommendation was made for total therapy time (inclusive of physiotherapy, occupational, and speech and language therapies) of at least three hours on at least five days a week. This was supported by a health economic analysis of higher intensity physiotherapy compared with standard practice (one to two hours, five days a week compared with <45 minutes, five days a week) showing cost effectiveness, alongside long term health benefits. 5

Offer needs-based rehabilitation to people after stroke. This should be for at least three hours a day, on at least five days of the week, and cover a range of multidisciplinary therapies including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech and language therapy.

Where it is agreed with the person after stroke that they are unable, or do not wish, to participate in rehabilitation therapy for at least three hours a day, on at least five days of the week, ensure that any therapy needed is still offered for a minimum of five days per week.

[Recommendations based on very low and low quality evidence from randomised controlled trials, economic modelling results, and on the guideline committee’s experience and expertise]

Feeling tired with a lack of energy is very common following stroke, 6 and for some patients who have had a stroke, it is the most difficult issue they cope with. For most, fatigue is self-limiting (resolving within a year), however for up to 40% it persists for more than two years. 6 Some patients are also low in mood. Performing an assessment of fatigue, both in the early stages and at a six month review, is a new recommendation driven by feedback from stakeholders and patients. One of three validated scales (fatigue severity scale, fatigue assessment scale, modified fatigue impact scale) was recommended based on published work on validity and reliability.

Consider a standardised assessment of fatigue in people after stroke in the early stage of their rehabilitation programme and at their six month stroke review.

[Recommendations based on validity and reliability studies (as no assess-to-treat studies were identified) and on the guideline committee’s experience and expertise]

Sensory disturbance: vision and hearing

If visual and hearing impairments following a stroke go undetected, it can affect the person’s quality of life and ability to engage with rehabilitation. Visual problems in acute stroke can affect more than half of patients who have had a stroke. 7 Compared with the previous guideline, a stronger recommendation to perform a visual assessment urgently was made because of the potential consequences of undetected vision problems (eg, accidents related to driving, or falls). Screening patients for hearing difficulties within six weeks is a new recommendation.

Offer people who are in hospital after stroke a specialist orthoptist assessment as soon as possible. If this cannot be done before discharge, offer the person an urgent outpatient appointment.

Screen people for hearing problems within the first six weeks after stroke.

Consider the Handicap Hearing Inventory in the Elderly or Amsterdam Inventory Auditory of Disability questionnaires for screening.

During screening, ask the person, and their family members and carers, about any changes to their hearing since the stroke.

Refer people with hearing difficulties for an audiology assessment, in line with NICE’s guideline on hearing loss in adults.

[Based on the experience and opinion of the guideline development group]

Community participation programmes

Involving patients in community participation programmes as part of their rehabilitation is a new recommendation. Examples of programmes include group based physical exercise, art, and music activities. In the evidence review, a wide range of outcomes were assessed including health related quality of life (person and carer), return to work, wellbeing, psychological distress, stroke specific patient reported outcome measures, and discontinuation. Those participating in programmes, broadly, had improved quality of life compared with those who did not, but the extent of the improvement varied substantially across studies.

Consider referring people after stroke, and their families and carers (if appropriate), to community participation programmes that:

are suited to the person’s rehabilitation goals and

take into account their needs, views, and preferences in line with NICE’s guideline on patient experience in adult NHS services.

[Recommendations based on very low and low quality evidence from randomised controlled trials, and on the guideline committee’s experience and expertise]

Implementation

As part of an updated National Stroke Service model, the integrated community stroke service now coordinates the transfer of care from hospital to community settings, and provides needs based stroke rehabilitation in the community, seven days a week. 8 Recommendations around early supported discharge and treatment intensity complement this new service model. Early supported discharge is likely to vary, with some regions not having a dedicated early supported discharge coordinator, and services will need to adapt to improve equitable access for all patients. Increasing the intensity of therapy will have substantial implications for therapists who deliver the programme. A change in how therapists deliver the sessions, such as group work, semi-supervised practice, and use of technology to deliver the session remotely, may be required.

Recommendations related to objective assessment of fatigue will lead to increased use of tools as part of standardised follow-up, alongside more personalised advice and person centred support or signposting. Recommending that all patients receive regular hearing and visual assessments will lead to an increase in inpatient and outpatient referrals to orthoptist and audiology services.

Access to community participation programmes varies across the country. Demand for these programmes will increase, and patients may request healthcare professionals to signpost these programmes, for example through social prescribing link workers. Because of the differences in commissioning and delivery of these programmes at a national scale, including programmes delivered purely by charities through funding from grants, appropriate funding may not meet demand for services.

Future research

The guideline committee prioritised the following for further research:

What is the clinical and cost effectiveness of delivering rehabilitation for seven days a week compared with five days a week for people after a stroke?

What is the clinical and cost effectiveness of more intensive cognitive and psychological therapy compared with usual care for people after a stroke?

For people after stroke with communication difficulties, what is the optimal tool for assessing fatigue?

Guidelines into practice

Think about the last time you had a consultation with a patient who had a stroke. What were the rehabilitation goals and needs of the patient and how did you navigate services locally to meet them?

What community participation groups are available locally for patients?

Further information on the guidance

This guidance was developed by the Guideline Development Team in accordance with NICE guideline methodology ( www.nice.org.uk/media/default/about/what-we-do/our-programmes/developing-nice-guidelines-the-manual.pdf ). A guideline committee (GC) was established by the Guideline Development Team, which incorporated healthcare and allied healthcare professionals (one neurorehabilitation physician, one neuropsychologist, one neurophysiotherapist, one stroke physiotherapist, one stroke physician, one general practitioner, one stroke specialist nurse, two stroke specialist speech and language therapists, two stroke specialist occupational therapists, one third sector representative, two dietitians, one orthoptist, one social worker) and three lay members.

The guideline is available at https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng236 . The GC identified relevant review questions and collected and appraised clinical and cost effectiveness evidence. Quality ratings of the evidence were based on GRADE methodology ( www.gradeworkinggroup.org ). These relate to the quality of the available evidence for assessed outcomes or themes rather than the quality of the study. The GC agreed recommendations for clinical practice based on the available evidence or, when evidence was not found, based on their experience and opinion using informal consensus methods.

The scope and the draft of the guideline went through a rigorous reviewing process, in which stakeholder organisations were invited to comment; the GC took all comments into consideration when producing the final version of the guideline. NICE will conduct regular reviews after publication of the guidance, to determine whether the evidence base has progressed significantly enough to alter the current guideline recommendations and require an update.

How patients were involved in the creation of this article

Two co-authors MC and SH were lay members of the guideline committee. In addition, committee members involved in this guideline update included three lay members who contributed to the formulation of the recommendations summarised here.

Acknowledgments

The members of the Guideline Committee were (shown alphabetically): Sara Ajina (neurorehabilitation physician), Khalid Ali (stroke physician), Jacqueline Benfield (stroke specialist speech and language therapist), Jon Brown (chair), Mark Cadman (lay member), Adele Collins (dietitian), Catherine Ford (neuropsychologist), Richard Francis (third sector representative), Jeanette Grocott (stroke specialist nurse), Stephen Hill (lay member), David Hearnden (social worker), Chandrika Kaviraj (lay member), Nicola Moran (stroke physiotherapist), Rebecca Palmer (stroke specialist speech and language therapist), Sarah Paterson (neurophysiotherapist), Fiona Rowe (orthoptist), Eugene Tang (general practitioner), Elizabeth Taylor (stroke specialist occupational therapist), Lauren Turner (dietitian), Elizabeth Warburton (topic adviser) and Kaye Wood (stroke specialist occupational therapist).

The members of the NICE technical team (shown alphabetically by surname): Amber Hernaman, Bernard Higgins, Sophia Kemmis-Betty, Nancy Pursey, Joseph Runicles, Claire Sloan, David Wonderling, George Wood, and Madeleine Zucker.

Contributorship and the guarantor: All six authors confirm that they meet all four authorship criteria in the ICMJE uniform requirements. ET is the guarantor for this article. The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and not necessarily those of NICE.

Funding: No authors received specific funding from NICE to write this summary. ET (NIHR clinical lecturer) is funded by the NIHR. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR, NHS, or the UK Department of Health and Social Care.

Competing interests: We declared the following interests based on NICE’s policy on conflicts of interests ( https://www.nice.org.uk/Media/Default/About/Who-we-are/Policies-and-procedures/declaration-of-interests-policy.pdf ): The guideline authors’ full statements can be viewed at https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng236/documents/register-of-interests

Provenance and peer review: commissioned; not externally peer reviewed.

  • GBD 2019 Stroke Collaborators
  • ↵ Stroke Association. Stroke statistics. https://www.stroke.org.uk/what-is-stroke/stroke-statistics .
  • Berdunov V ,
  • Quayyum Z ,
  • Wittenberg R
  • ↵ National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Stroke rehabilitation in adults: Clinical guideline [CG162]. 2013.
  • ↵ National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Stroke rehabilitation in adults: Clinical Guideline [NG236] 2023. www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng236 .
  • Paciaroni M ,
  • Acciarresi M
  • Hepworth LR ,
  • Cheyne CP ,
  • ↵ National Health Service. National service model for an integrated community stroke service. 2022. https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/stroke-integrated-community-service-february-2022.pdf .

summary of research article

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Left: Scanning electron microscope and X-ray (EDX) images of microbe consortia (yellow) and silica (blue). Right: transmission electron microscope image of microbe consortia with silica spheres of silica.

The Science

Communities of microbes that live in ocean sediments can consume methane. In oxygen-deprived sediments these microbes form clusters, called aggregates, that can have deposits of silica on their surfaces. It is not clear if these silica deposits result from the activity of methane consuming aggregates, or if their formation is unrelated to biological processes. This study showed that silica rich nanoparticles formed on cell aggregates in culture, even when the chemical composition of water should have prevented it. It suggests that microbial activity is involved in their formation.

Microbes called anaerobic methanotrophic archaea form communities with sulfate reducing bacteria. These communities can consume methane without the need for oxygen. Processes associated with these microbes can create silica deposits that appear to entomb the communities. Silica deposition helps to preserve aggregates in the geological record. This discovery connects the way microbes process methane with the transformation of silica. It will aid scientists in identifying fossil evidence for this ancient microbial activity in the rock record.

Minerals can preserve microbial biosignatures in the rock record, where they serve as diagnostic indicators of ancient microbial processes like methane oxidation. In modern methane-rich environments, partnerships between anaerobic methane-oxidizing archaea (ANME) and sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) link the microbial cycling of carbon, sulfur, iron, and nitrogen through their metabolic activities. However, their potential impact on the silica cycle has been largely overlooked. This study offers new insights on how ANME-SRB consortia contribute to biologically induced silica precipitation. Researchers used enrichment cultures of ANME-SRB consortia to investigate this phenomenon under controlled laboratory conditions and observed the formation of silica-rich spheres (~200 nm) within the exopolymer-rich matrix of the consortia. These silica-rich particles formed in artificial seawater media that was undersaturated with respect to crystalline and amorphous silica, suggestive of biological influence on their formation. Mineral stability modeling suggested this form was likely an amorphous form of kaolinite clay associated with the organic matrix.

Using correlative fluorescence in situ hybridization, scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, and nanoscale secondary ion mass spectrometry, researchers expanded this study to the field, testing for the occurrence of Si-rich minerals associated with uncultured anaerobic methane-oxidizing consortia in authigenic carbonates and sediments. These analyses revealed silica-rich phases on consortia like those observed in the enrichment cultures. Microbially-induced precipitation not only contributes to silica transformation in methane-rich environments, but also may enhance the preservation of ANME-SRB consortia as microfossils. The intimate association between these consortia and silica offers a potential mineralogical signature for fossilized methane oxidizing communities, helping to identify them in ancient methane cycling ecosystems.

Victoria J. Orphan California Institute of Technology  [email protected]

Funding for this work was provided by the Department of Energy Office of Science, the National Science Foundation, a Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Marine Microbiology Investigator grant, the Simons Collaboration for the Origin of Life, the Center for Environmental Microbial Interactions at California Institute of Technology, a Schlanger Ocean Drilling Fellowship, and the CIFAR Earth 4D program.

Publications

Osorio-Rodriguez, D., et al. , Microbially induced precipitation of silica by anaerobic methane-oxidizing consortia and implications for microbial fossil preservation . Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 120 , 51 (2023). [DOI: 10.1073/pnas.23021561]

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In this week's summary of ratings views: Resilient economies curtail recession fears, but inflation risks may delay rate cuts. Credit conditions improving, but labor cost, real estate and geopolitical risks still loom. Higher rates continue to pressure commercial real estate asset valuations. Also: U.S. regional banks, U.S. transportation, Altice, synthetic fuels.

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FACT SHEET: President   Biden Issues Executive Order and Announces New Actions to Advance Women’s Health Research and   Innovation

In his State of the Union address, President Biden laid out his vision for transforming women’s health research and improving women’s lives all across America. The President called on Congress to make a bold, transformative investment of $12 billion in new funding for women’s health research. This investment would be used to create a Fund for Women’s Health Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to advance a cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research agenda and to establish a new nationwide network of research centers of excellence and innovation in women’s health—which would serve as a national gold standard for women’s health research across the lifespan.

It is long past time to ensure women get the answers they need when it comes to their health—from cardiovascular disease to autoimmune diseases to menopause-related conditions. To pioneer the next generation of discoveries, the President and the First Lady launched the first-ever White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research , which aims to fundamentally change how we approach and fund women’s health research in the United States.

Today, President Biden is signing a new Executive Order that will direct the most comprehensive set of executive actions ever taken to expand and improve research on women’s health. These directives will ensure women’s health is integrated and prioritized across the federal research portfolio and budget, and will galvanize new research on a wide range of topics, including women’s midlife health.

The President and First Lady are also announcing more than twenty new actions and commitments by federal agencies, including through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Department of Defense (DoD), the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and the National Science Foundation (NSF). This includes the launch of a new NIH-wide effort that will direct key investments of $200 million in Fiscal Year 2025 to fund new, interdisciplinary women’s health research—a first step towards the transformative central Fund on Women’s Health that the President has called on Congress to invest in. These actions also build on the First Lady’s announcement last month of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H) Sprint for Women’s Health , which committed $100 million towards transformative research and development in women’s health.

Today, the President is issuing an Executive Order that will:

  • Integrate Women’s Health Across the Federal Research Portfolio . The Executive Order directs the Initiative’s constituent agencies to develop and strengthen research and data standards on women’s health across all relevant research and funding opportunities, with the goal of helping ensure that the Administration is better leveraging every dollar of federal funding for health research to improve women’s health. These actions will build on the NIH’s current policy to ensure that research it funds considers women’s health in the development of study design and in data collection and analysis. Agencies will take action to ensure women’s health is being considered at every step in the research process—from the applications that prospective grantees submit to the way that they report on grant implementation.
  • Prioritize Investments in Women’s Health Research . The Executive Order directs the Initiative’s constituent agencies to prioritize funding for women’s health research and encourage innovation in women’s health, including through ARPA-H and multi-agency initiatives such as the Small Business Innovation Research Program and the Small Business Technology Transfer Program. These entities are dedicated to high-impact research and innovation, including through the support of early-stage small businesses and entrepreneurs engaged in research and innovation. The Executive Order further directs HHS and NSF to study ways to leverage artificial intelligence to advance women’s health research. These additional investments—across a wide range of agencies—will support innovation and open new doors to breakthroughs in women’s health.
  • Galvanize New Research on Women’s Midlife Health .  To narrow research gaps on diseases and conditions associated with women’s midlife health or that are more likely to occur after menopause, such as rheumatoid arthritis, heart attack, and osteoporosis, the President is directing HHS to: expand data collection efforts related to women’s midlife health; launch a comprehensive research agenda that will guide future investments in menopause-related research; identify ways to improve management of menopause-related issues and the clinical care that women receive; and develop new resources to help women better understand their options for menopause-related symptoms prevention and treatment. The Executive Order also directs the DoD and VA to study and take steps to improve the treatment of, and research related to, menopause for Service women and women veterans.
  • Assess Unmet Needs to Support Women’s Health Research . The Executive Order directs the Office of Management and Budget and the Gender Policy Council to lead a robust effort to assess gaps in federal funding for women’s health research and identify changes—whether statutory, regulatory, or budgetary—that are needed to maximally support the broad scope of women’s health research across the federal government. Agencies will also be required to report annually on their investments in women’s health research, as well as progress towards their efforts to improve women’s health.

Today, agencies are also announcing new actions they are taking to promote women’s health research , as part of their ongoing efforts through the White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research. Agencies are announcing actions to:

Prioritize and Increase Investments in Women’s Health Research

  • Launch an NIH-Cross Cutting Effort to Transform Women’s Health Throughout the Lifespan. NIH is launching an NIH-wide effort to close gaps in women’s health research across the lifespan. This effort—which will initially be supported by $200 million from NIH beginning in FY 2025—will allow NIH to catalyze interdisciplinary research, particularly on issues that cut across the traditional mandates of the institutes and centers at NIH. It will also allow NIH to launch ambitious, multi-faceted research projects such as research on the impact of perimenopause and menopause on heart health, brain health and bone health. In addition, the President’s FY25 Budget Request would double current funding for the NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health to support new and existing initiatives that emphasize women’s health research.

This coordinated, NIH-wide effort will be co-chaired by the NIH Office of the Director, the Office of Research on Women’s Health, and the institute directors from the National Institute on Aging; the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; the National Institute on Drug Abuse; the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; the National Institute on Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

  • Invest in Research on a Wide Range of Women’s Health Issues. The bipartisan Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP), led out of DoD, funds research on women’s health encompassing a range of diseases and conditions that affect women uniquely, disproportionately, or differently from men. While the programs and topic areas directed by Congress differ each year, CDMRP has consistently funded research to advance women’s health since its creation in 1993. In Fiscal Year 2022, DoD implemented nearly $490 million in CDMRP investments towards women’s health research projects ranging from breast and ovarian cancer to lupus to orthotics and prosthetics in women.  In Fiscal Year 2023, DoD anticipates implementing approximately $500 million in CDMRP funding for women’s health research, including in endometriosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and chronic fatigue.
  • Call for New Proposals on Emerging Women’s Health Issues . Today, NSF is calling for new research and education proposals to advance discoveries and innovations related to women’s health. To promote multidisciplinary solutions to women’s health disparities, NSF invites applications that would improve women’s health through a wide range of disciplines—from computational research to engineering biomechanics. This is the first time that NSF has broadly called for novel and transformative research that is focused entirely on women’s health topics, and proposals will be considered on an ongoing basis.
  • Increase Research on How Environmental Factors Affect Women’s Health. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is updating its grant solicitations and contracts to ensure that applicants prioritize, as appropriate, the consideration of women’s exposures and health outcomes. These changes will help ensure that women’s health is better accounted for across EPA’s research portfolio and increase our knowledge of women’s environmental health—from endocrine disruption to toxic exposure.
  • Create a Dedicated, One-Stop Shop for NIH Funding Opportunities on Women’s Health. Researchers are often unaware of existing opportunities to apply for federal funding. To help close this gap, NIH is issuing a new Notice of Special Interest that identifies current, open funding opportunities related to women’s health research across a wide range of health conditions and all Institutes, Centers, and Offices. The NIH Office of Research on Women’s Health will build on this new Notice by creating a dedicated one-stop shop on open funding opportunities related to women’s health research. This will make it easier for researchers and institutions to find and apply for funding—instead of having to search across each of NIH’s 27 institutes for funding opportunities.

Foster Innovation and Discovery in Women’s Health

  • Accelerate Transformative Research and Development in Women’s Health. ARPA-H’s Sprint for Women’s Health launched in February 2024 commits $100 million to transformative research and development in women’s health. ARPA-H is soliciting ideas for novel groundbreaking research and development to address women’s health, as well as opportunities to accelerate and scale tools, products, and platforms with the potential for commercialization to improve women’s health outcomes.
  • Support Private Sector Innovation Through Additional Federal Investments in Women’s Health Research. The NIH’s competitive Small Business Innovation Research Program and the Small Business Technology Transfer Program is committing to further increasing—by 50 percent—its investments in supporting innovators and early-stage small businesses engaged in research and development on women’s health. These programs will solicit new proposals on promising women’s health innovation and make evidence-based investments that bridge the gap between performance of basic science and commercialization of resulting innovations. This commitment for additional funds builds on the investments the Administration has already made to increase innovation in women’s health through small businesses, including by increasing investments by sevenfold between Fiscal Year 2021 and Fiscal Year 2023.
  • Advance Initiatives to Protect and Promote the Health of Women. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seeks to advance efforts to help address gaps in research and availability of products for diseases and conditions that primarily impact women, or for which scientific considerations may be different for women, and is committed to research and regulatory initiatives that facilitate the development of safe and effective medical products for women. FDA also plans to issue guidance for industry that relates to the inclusion of women in clinical trials and conduct outreach to stakeholders to discuss opportunities to advance women’s health across the lifespan. And FDA’s Office of Women’s Health will update FDA’s framework for women’s health research and seek to fund research with an emphasis on bridging gaps in knowledge on important women’s health topics, including sex differences and conditions that uniquely or disproportionately impact women.
  • Use Biomarkers to Improve the Health of Women Through Early Detection and Treatment of Conditions, such as Endometriosis. NIH will launch a new initiative dedicated to research on biomarker discovery and validation to help improve our ability to prevent, diagnose, and treat conditions that affect women uniquely, including endometriosis. This NIH initiative will accelerate our ability to identify new pathways for diagnosis and treatment by encouraging multi-sector collaboration and synergistic research that will speed the transfer of knowledge from bench to bedside.
  • Leverage Engineering Research to Improve Women’s Health . The NSF Engineering Research Visioning Alliance (ERVA) is convening national experts to identify high-impact research opportunities in engineering that can improve women’s health. ERVA’s Transforming Women’s Health Outcomes Through Engineering visioning event will be held in June 2024, and will bring together experts from across engineering—including those in microfluidics, computational modeling, artificial intelligence/imaging, and diagnostic technologies and devices—to evaluate the landscape for new applications in women’s health. Following this event, ERVA will issue a report and roadmap on critical areas where engineering research can impact women’s health across the lifespan.
  • Drive Engineering Innovations in Women’s Health Discovery . NSF awardees at Texas A&M University will hold a conference in summer 2024 to collectively identify challenges and opportunities in improving women’s health through engineering. Biomedical engineers and scientists will explore and identify how various types of engineering tools, including biomechanics and immuno-engineering, can be applied to women’s health and spark promising new research directions.

Expand and Leverage Data Collection and Analysis Related to Women’s Health

  • Help Standardize Data to Support Research on Women’s Health. NIH is launching an effort to identify and develop new common data elements related to women’s health that will help researchers share and combine datasets, promote interoperability, and improve the accuracy of datasets when it comes to women’s health. NIH will initiate this process by convening data and scientific experts across the federal government to solicit feedback on the need to develop new NIH-endorsed common data elements—which are widely used in both research and clinical settings. By advancing new tools to capture more data about women’s health, NIH will give researchers and clinicians the tools they need to enable more meaningful data collection, analysis, and reporting and comprehensively improve our knowledge of women’s health.
  • Reflect Women’s Health Needs in National Coverage Determinations. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will strengthen its review process, including through Coverage with Evidence Development guidance, to ensure that new medical services and technologies work well in women, as applicable, before being covered nationally through the Medicare program. This will help ensure that Medicare funds are used for treatments with a sufficient evidence base to show that they actually work in women, who make up more than half of the Medicare population.
  • Leverage Data and Quality Measures to Advance Women’s Health Research. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) are building on existing datasets to improve the collection, analysis, and reporting of information on women’s health. The CDC is expanding the collection of key quality measures across a woman’s lifespan, including to understand the link between pregnancy and post-partum hypertension and heart disease, and plans to release the Million Hearts Hypertension in Pregnancy Change Package. This resource will feature a menu of evidence-informed strategies by which clinicians can change care processes. Each strategy includes tested tools and resources to support related clinical quality improvement. HRSA is modernizing its Uniform Data System in ways that will improve the ability to assess how women are being served through HRSA-funded health centers. By improving the ability to analyze data on key clinical quality measures, CDC and HRSA can help close gaps in women’s health care access and identify new opportunities for high-impact research.  

Strengthen Coordination, Infrastructure, and Training to Support Women’s Health Research

  • Launch New Joint Collaborative to Improve Women’s Health Research for Service Members and Veterans. DoD and VA are launching a new Women’s Health Research collaborative to explore opportunities that further promote joint efforts to advance women’s health research and improve evidence-based care for Service members and veterans. The collaborative will increase coordination with the goal of helping improve care across the lifespan for women in the military and women veterans. The Departments will further advance research on key women’s health issues and develop a roadmap to close pressing research gaps, including those specifically affecting Service women and women veterans.
  • Coordinate Research to Advance the Health of Women in the Military. DoD will invest $10 million, contingent on available funds, in the Military Women’s Health Research Partnership. This Partnership is led by the Uniformed Services University and advances and coordinates women’s health research across the Department. The Partnership is supporting research in a wide range of health issues affecting women in the military, including cancers, mental and behavioral health, and the unique health care needs of Active Duty Service Women. In addition, the Uniformed Services University established a dedicated Director of Military Women’s Health Research Program, a role that is responsible for identifying research gaps, fostering collaboration, and coordinating and aligning a unified approach to address the evolving needs of Active Duty Service Women.
  • Support EPA-Wide Research and Dissemination of Data on Women’s Health. EPA is establishing a Women’s Health Community of Practice to coordinate research and data dissemination. EPA also plans to direct the Board of Scientific Counselors to identify ways to advance EPA’s research with specific consideration of the intersection of environmental factors and women’s health, including maternal health.
  • Expand Fellowship Training in Women’s Health Research. CDC, in collaboration with the CDC Foundation and American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, is expanding training in women’s health research and public health surveillance to OBGYNs, nurses and advanced practice nurses. Through fellowships and public health experiences with CDC, these clinicians will gain public health research skills to improve the health of women and children exposed to or affected by infectious diseases, mental health and substance use disorders. CDC will invite early career clinicians to train in public health and policy to become future leaders in women’s health research.

Improve Women’s Health Across the Lifespan

  • Create a Comprehensive Research Agenda on Menopause. To help women get the answers they need about menopause, NIH will launch its first-ever Pathways to Prevention series on menopause and the treatment of menopausal symptoms. Pathways to Prevention is an independent, evidence-based process to synthesize the current state of the evidence, identify gaps in existing research, and develop a roadmap that can be used to help guide the field forward. The report, once completed, will help guide innovation and investments in menopause-related research and care across the federal government and research community.
  • Improve Primary Care and Preventive Services for Women . The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) will issue a Notice of Intent to publish a funding opportunity announcement for research to advance the science of primary care, which will include a focus on women’s health. Through this funding opportunity, AHRQ will build evidence about key elements of primary care that influence patient outcomes and advance health equity—focusing on women of color—such as care coordination, continuity of care, comprehensiveness of care, person-centered care, and trust. The results from the funding opportunity will shed light on vital targets for improvements in the delivery of primary healthcare across a woman’s lifespan, including women’s health preventive services, prevention and management of multiple chronic diseases, perinatal care, transition from pediatric to adult care, sexual and reproductive health, and care of older adults.
  • Promote the Health of American Indian and Alaska Native Women. The Indian Health Service is launching a series of engagements, including focus groups, to better understand tribal beliefs related to menopause in American Indian and Alaska Native Women. This series will inform new opportunities to expand culturally informed patient care and research as well as the development of new resources and educational materials.
  • Connect Research to Real-World Outcomes to Improve Women’s Mental and Behavioral Health. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is supporting a range of health care providers to address the unique needs of women with or at risk for mental health and substance use disorders. Building on its current efforts to provide technical assistance through various initiatives , SAMHSA intends, contingent on available funds, to launch a new comprehensive Women’s Behavioral Health Technical Assistance Center. This center will identify and improve the implementation of best practices in women’s behavioral health across the life span; identify and fill critical gaps in knowledge of and resources for women’s behavioral health; and provide learning opportunities, training, and technical assistance for healthcare providers.
  • Support Research on Maternal Health Outcomes. USDA will fund research to help recognize early warning signs of maternal morbidity and mortality in recipients of Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), and anticipates awarding up to $5 million in Fiscal Year 2023 to support maternal health research through WIC. In addition, research being conducted through the Agricultural Research Service’s Human Nutrition Research Centers is focusing on women’s health across the lifespan, including the nutritional needs of pregnant and breastfeeding women and older adults.

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What the data says about abortion in the u.s..

Pew Research Center has conducted many surveys about abortion over the years, providing a lens into Americans’ views on whether the procedure should be legal, among a host of other questions.

In a  Center survey  conducted nearly a year after the Supreme Court’s June 2022 decision that  ended the constitutional right to abortion , 62% of U.S. adults said the practice should be legal in all or most cases, while 36% said it should be illegal in all or most cases. Another survey conducted a few months before the decision showed that relatively few Americans take an absolutist view on the issue .

Find answers to common questions about abortion in America, based on data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Guttmacher Institute, which have tracked these patterns for several decades:

How many abortions are there in the U.S. each year?

How has the number of abortions in the u.s. changed over time, what is the abortion rate among women in the u.s. how has it changed over time, what are the most common types of abortion, how many abortion providers are there in the u.s., and how has that number changed, what percentage of abortions are for women who live in a different state from the abortion provider, what are the demographics of women who have had abortions, when during pregnancy do most abortions occur, how often are there medical complications from abortion.

This compilation of data on abortion in the United States draws mainly from two sources: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Guttmacher Institute, both of which have regularly compiled national abortion data for approximately half a century, and which collect their data in different ways.

The CDC data that is highlighted in this post comes from the agency’s “abortion surveillance” reports, which have been published annually since 1974 (and which have included data from 1969). Its figures from 1973 through 1996 include data from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and New York City – 52 “reporting areas” in all. Since 1997, the CDC’s totals have lacked data from some states (most notably California) for the years that those states did not report data to the agency. The four reporting areas that did not submit data to the CDC in 2021 – California, Maryland, New Hampshire and New Jersey – accounted for approximately 25% of all legal induced abortions in the U.S. in 2020, according to Guttmacher’s data. Most states, though,  do  have data in the reports, and the figures for the vast majority of them came from each state’s central health agency, while for some states, the figures came from hospitals and other medical facilities.

Discussion of CDC abortion data involving women’s state of residence, marital status, race, ethnicity, age, abortion history and the number of previous live births excludes the low share of abortions where that information was not supplied. Read the methodology for the CDC’s latest abortion surveillance report , which includes data from 2021, for more details. Previous reports can be found at  stacks.cdc.gov  by entering “abortion surveillance” into the search box.

For the numbers of deaths caused by induced abortions in 1963 and 1965, this analysis looks at reports by the then-U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, a precursor to the Department of Health and Human Services. In computing those figures, we excluded abortions listed in the report under the categories “spontaneous or unspecified” or as “other.” (“Spontaneous abortion” is another way of referring to miscarriages.)

Guttmacher data in this post comes from national surveys of abortion providers that Guttmacher has conducted 19 times since 1973. Guttmacher compiles its figures after contacting every known provider of abortions – clinics, hospitals and physicians’ offices – in the country. It uses questionnaires and health department data, and it provides estimates for abortion providers that don’t respond to its inquiries. (In 2020, the last year for which it has released data on the number of abortions in the U.S., it used estimates for 12% of abortions.) For most of the 2000s, Guttmacher has conducted these national surveys every three years, each time getting abortion data for the prior two years. For each interim year, Guttmacher has calculated estimates based on trends from its own figures and from other data.

The latest full summary of Guttmacher data came in the institute’s report titled “Abortion Incidence and Service Availability in the United States, 2020.” It includes figures for 2020 and 2019 and estimates for 2018. The report includes a methods section.

In addition, this post uses data from StatPearls, an online health care resource, on complications from abortion.

An exact answer is hard to come by. The CDC and the Guttmacher Institute have each tried to measure this for around half a century, but they use different methods and publish different figures.

The last year for which the CDC reported a yearly national total for abortions is 2021. It found there were 625,978 abortions in the District of Columbia and the 46 states with available data that year, up from 597,355 in those states and D.C. in 2020. The corresponding figure for 2019 was 607,720.

The last year for which Guttmacher reported a yearly national total was 2020. It said there were 930,160 abortions that year in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, compared with 916,460 in 2019.

  • How the CDC gets its data: It compiles figures that are voluntarily reported by states’ central health agencies, including separate figures for New York City and the District of Columbia. Its latest totals do not include figures from California, Maryland, New Hampshire or New Jersey, which did not report data to the CDC. ( Read the methodology from the latest CDC report .)
  • How Guttmacher gets its data: It compiles its figures after contacting every known abortion provider – clinics, hospitals and physicians’ offices – in the country. It uses questionnaires and health department data, then provides estimates for abortion providers that don’t respond. Guttmacher’s figures are higher than the CDC’s in part because they include data (and in some instances, estimates) from all 50 states. ( Read the institute’s latest full report and methodology .)

While the Guttmacher Institute supports abortion rights, its empirical data on abortions in the U.S. has been widely cited by  groups  and  publications  across the political spectrum, including by a  number of those  that  disagree with its positions .

These estimates from Guttmacher and the CDC are results of multiyear efforts to collect data on abortion across the U.S. Last year, Guttmacher also began publishing less precise estimates every few months , based on a much smaller sample of providers.

The figures reported by these organizations include only legal induced abortions conducted by clinics, hospitals or physicians’ offices, or those that make use of abortion pills dispensed from certified facilities such as clinics or physicians’ offices. They do not account for the use of abortion pills that were obtained  outside of clinical settings .

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A line chart showing the changing number of legal abortions in the U.S. since the 1970s.

The annual number of U.S. abortions rose for years after Roe v. Wade legalized the procedure in 1973, reaching its highest levels around the late 1980s and early 1990s, according to both the CDC and Guttmacher. Since then, abortions have generally decreased at what a CDC analysis called  “a slow yet steady pace.”

Guttmacher says the number of abortions occurring in the U.S. in 2020 was 40% lower than it was in 1991. According to the CDC, the number was 36% lower in 2021 than in 1991, looking just at the District of Columbia and the 46 states that reported both of those years.

(The corresponding line graph shows the long-term trend in the number of legal abortions reported by both organizations. To allow for consistent comparisons over time, the CDC figures in the chart have been adjusted to ensure that the same states are counted from one year to the next. Using that approach, the CDC figure for 2021 is 622,108 legal abortions.)

There have been occasional breaks in this long-term pattern of decline – during the middle of the first decade of the 2000s, and then again in the late 2010s. The CDC reported modest 1% and 2% increases in abortions in 2018 and 2019, and then, after a 2% decrease in 2020, a 5% increase in 2021. Guttmacher reported an 8% increase over the three-year period from 2017 to 2020.

As noted above, these figures do not include abortions that use pills obtained outside of clinical settings.

Guttmacher says that in 2020 there were 14.4 abortions in the U.S. per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44. Its data shows that the rate of abortions among women has generally been declining in the U.S. since 1981, when it reported there were 29.3 abortions per 1,000 women in that age range.

The CDC says that in 2021, there were 11.6 abortions in the U.S. per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44. (That figure excludes data from California, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Hampshire and New Jersey.) Like Guttmacher’s data, the CDC’s figures also suggest a general decline in the abortion rate over time. In 1980, when the CDC reported on all 50 states and D.C., it said there were 25 abortions per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44.

That said, both Guttmacher and the CDC say there were slight increases in the rate of abortions during the late 2010s and early 2020s. Guttmacher says the abortion rate per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44 rose from 13.5 in 2017 to 14.4 in 2020. The CDC says it rose from 11.2 per 1,000 in 2017 to 11.4 in 2019, before falling back to 11.1 in 2020 and then rising again to 11.6 in 2021. (The CDC’s figures for those years exclude data from California, D.C., Maryland, New Hampshire and New Jersey.)

The CDC broadly divides abortions into two categories: surgical abortions and medication abortions, which involve pills. Since the Food and Drug Administration first approved abortion pills in 2000, their use has increased over time as a share of abortions nationally, according to both the CDC and Guttmacher.

The majority of abortions in the U.S. now involve pills, according to both the CDC and Guttmacher. The CDC says 56% of U.S. abortions in 2021 involved pills, up from 53% in 2020 and 44% in 2019. Its figures for 2021 include the District of Columbia and 44 states that provided this data; its figures for 2020 include D.C. and 44 states (though not all of the same states as in 2021), and its figures for 2019 include D.C. and 45 states.

Guttmacher, which measures this every three years, says 53% of U.S. abortions involved pills in 2020, up from 39% in 2017.

Two pills commonly used together for medication abortions are mifepristone, which, taken first, blocks hormones that support a pregnancy, and misoprostol, which then causes the uterus to empty. According to the FDA, medication abortions are safe  until 10 weeks into pregnancy.

Surgical abortions conducted  during the first trimester  of pregnancy typically use a suction process, while the relatively few surgical abortions that occur  during the second trimester  of a pregnancy typically use a process called dilation and evacuation, according to the UCLA School of Medicine.

In 2020, there were 1,603 facilities in the U.S. that provided abortions,  according to Guttmacher . This included 807 clinics, 530 hospitals and 266 physicians’ offices.

A horizontal stacked bar chart showing the total number of abortion providers down since 1982.

While clinics make up half of the facilities that provide abortions, they are the sites where the vast majority (96%) of abortions are administered, either through procedures or the distribution of pills, according to Guttmacher’s 2020 data. (This includes 54% of abortions that are administered at specialized abortion clinics and 43% at nonspecialized clinics.) Hospitals made up 33% of the facilities that provided abortions in 2020 but accounted for only 3% of abortions that year, while just 1% of abortions were conducted by physicians’ offices.

Looking just at clinics – that is, the total number of specialized abortion clinics and nonspecialized clinics in the U.S. – Guttmacher found the total virtually unchanged between 2017 (808 clinics) and 2020 (807 clinics). However, there were regional differences. In the Midwest, the number of clinics that provide abortions increased by 11% during those years, and in the West by 6%. The number of clinics  decreased  during those years by 9% in the Northeast and 3% in the South.

The total number of abortion providers has declined dramatically since the 1980s. In 1982, according to Guttmacher, there were 2,908 facilities providing abortions in the U.S., including 789 clinics, 1,405 hospitals and 714 physicians’ offices.

The CDC does not track the number of abortion providers.

In the District of Columbia and the 46 states that provided abortion and residency information to the CDC in 2021, 10.9% of all abortions were performed on women known to live outside the state where the abortion occurred – slightly higher than the percentage in 2020 (9.7%). That year, D.C. and 46 states (though not the same ones as in 2021) reported abortion and residency data. (The total number of abortions used in these calculations included figures for women with both known and unknown residential status.)

The share of reported abortions performed on women outside their state of residence was much higher before the 1973 Roe decision that stopped states from banning abortion. In 1972, 41% of all abortions in D.C. and the 20 states that provided this information to the CDC that year were performed on women outside their state of residence. In 1973, the corresponding figure was 21% in the District of Columbia and the 41 states that provided this information, and in 1974 it was 11% in D.C. and the 43 states that provided data.

In the District of Columbia and the 46 states that reported age data to  the CDC in 2021, the majority of women who had abortions (57%) were in their 20s, while about three-in-ten (31%) were in their 30s. Teens ages 13 to 19 accounted for 8% of those who had abortions, while women ages 40 to 44 accounted for about 4%.

The vast majority of women who had abortions in 2021 were unmarried (87%), while married women accounted for 13%, according to  the CDC , which had data on this from 37 states.

A pie chart showing that, in 2021, majority of abortions were for women who had never had one before.

In the District of Columbia, New York City (but not the rest of New York) and the 31 states that reported racial and ethnic data on abortion to  the CDC , 42% of all women who had abortions in 2021 were non-Hispanic Black, while 30% were non-Hispanic White, 22% were Hispanic and 6% were of other races.

Looking at abortion rates among those ages 15 to 44, there were 28.6 abortions per 1,000 non-Hispanic Black women in 2021; 12.3 abortions per 1,000 Hispanic women; 6.4 abortions per 1,000 non-Hispanic White women; and 9.2 abortions per 1,000 women of other races, the  CDC reported  from those same 31 states, D.C. and New York City.

For 57% of U.S. women who had induced abortions in 2021, it was the first time they had ever had one,  according to the CDC.  For nearly a quarter (24%), it was their second abortion. For 11% of women who had an abortion that year, it was their third, and for 8% it was their fourth or more. These CDC figures include data from 41 states and New York City, but not the rest of New York.

A bar chart showing that most U.S. abortions in 2021 were for women who had previously given birth.

Nearly four-in-ten women who had abortions in 2021 (39%) had no previous live births at the time they had an abortion,  according to the CDC . Almost a quarter (24%) of women who had abortions in 2021 had one previous live birth, 20% had two previous live births, 10% had three, and 7% had four or more previous live births. These CDC figures include data from 41 states and New York City, but not the rest of New York.

The vast majority of abortions occur during the first trimester of a pregnancy. In 2021, 93% of abortions occurred during the first trimester – that is, at or before 13 weeks of gestation,  according to the CDC . An additional 6% occurred between 14 and 20 weeks of pregnancy, and about 1% were performed at 21 weeks or more of gestation. These CDC figures include data from 40 states and New York City, but not the rest of New York.

About 2% of all abortions in the U.S. involve some type of complication for the woman , according to an article in StatPearls, an online health care resource. “Most complications are considered minor such as pain, bleeding, infection and post-anesthesia complications,” according to the article.

The CDC calculates  case-fatality rates for women from induced abortions – that is, how many women die from abortion-related complications, for every 100,000 legal abortions that occur in the U.S .  The rate was lowest during the most recent period examined by the agency (2013 to 2020), when there were 0.45 deaths to women per 100,000 legal induced abortions. The case-fatality rate reported by the CDC was highest during the first period examined by the agency (1973 to 1977), when it was 2.09 deaths to women per 100,000 legal induced abortions. During the five-year periods in between, the figure ranged from 0.52 (from 1993 to 1997) to 0.78 (from 1978 to 1982).

The CDC calculates death rates by five-year and seven-year periods because of year-to-year fluctuation in the numbers and due to the relatively low number of women who die from legal induced abortions.

In 2020, the last year for which the CDC has information , six women in the U.S. died due to complications from induced abortions. Four women died in this way in 2019, two in 2018, and three in 2017. (These deaths all followed legal abortions.) Since 1990, the annual number of deaths among women due to legal induced abortion has ranged from two to 12.

The annual number of reported deaths from induced abortions (legal and illegal) tended to be higher in the 1980s, when it ranged from nine to 16, and from 1972 to 1979, when it ranged from 13 to 63. One driver of the decline was the drop in deaths from illegal abortions. There were 39 deaths from illegal abortions in 1972, the last full year before Roe v. Wade. The total fell to 19 in 1973 and to single digits or zero every year after that. (The number of deaths from legal abortions has also declined since then, though with some slight variation over time.)

The number of deaths from induced abortions was considerably higher in the 1960s than afterward. For instance, there were 119 deaths from induced abortions in  1963  and 99 in  1965 , according to reports by the then-U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, a precursor to the Department of Health and Human Services. The CDC is a division of Health and Human Services.

Note: This is an update of a post originally published May 27, 2022, and first updated June 24, 2022.

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Key facts about the abortion debate in America

Public opinion on abortion, three-in-ten or more democrats and republicans don’t agree with their party on abortion, partisanship a bigger factor than geography in views of abortion access locally, do state laws on abortion reflect public opinion, most popular.

About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research. Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts .

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    Table of contents. When to write a summary. Step 1: Read the text. Step 2: Break the text down into sections. Step 3: Identify the key points in each section. Step 4: Write the summary. Step 5: Check the summary against the article. Other interesting articles. Frequently asked questions about summarizing.

  3. How To Write A Research Summary

    So, follow the steps below to write a research summary that sticks. 1. Read the parent paper thoroughly. You should go through the research paper thoroughly multiple times to ensure that you have a complete understanding of its contents. A 3-stage reading process helps.

  4. Research Summary

    Conference presentation: A research summary can be prepared for a conference presentation to summarize the main findings of a study or research project. Journal submission: Many academic journals require authors to submit a research summary along with their research article or study. The summary provides a brief overview of the study's main ...

  5. PDF Summary and Analysis of Scientific Research Articles

    The summary section of your paper shows that you understood the basic facts of the research. The analysis shows that you can evaluate the evidence presented in the research and explain why the research could be important. Summary. The summary portion of the paper should be written with enough detail so that a reader would not have to look at ...

  6. Article Summaries, Reviews & Critiques

    The summary should be about one third the length of the original article. Your summary should include: Introduction. Give an overview of the article, including the title and the name of the author. ... Adapted from "Guidelines for Using In-Text Citations in a Summary (or Research Paper)" by Christine Bauer-Ramazani, 2020. Additional Resources ...

  7. Finding and Summarizing Research Articles

    Introduction. Writing a summary or abstract teaches you how to condense information and how to read an article more effectively and with better understanding. Research articles usually contain these parts: Title/Author Information, Abstract, Introduction, Methodology, Result or Findings, Discussion or Conclusion, and References.

  8. How to Write a Summary

    An article summary like the above would be appropriate for a stand-alone summary assignment. However, you'll often want to give an even more concise summary of an article. For example, in a literature review or research paper, you may want to briefly summarize this study as part of a wider discussion of various sources. In this case, we can ...

  9. Research Paper Summary: How to Write a Summary of a Research ...

    A summary must be coherent and cogent and should make sense as a stand-alone piece of writing. It is typically 5% to 10% of the length of the original paper; however, the length depends on the length and complexity of the article and the purpose of the summary. Accordingly, a summary can be several paragraphs or pages, a single paragraph, or ...

  10. How to Summarize Any Research Article Better: Proven Tips Outlined

    Focus is vital, as some sections of a research article are more relevant to your strategy than others. For example, a summary crafted for a school project or a university may focus on the experiment itself. In contrast, the article's results and discussion sections may be more relevant to consumer marketing or for a business model.

  11. Article Summarizer

    Scholarcy's AI summarization tool is designed to generate accurate, reliable article summaries. Our summarizer tool is trained to identify key terms, claims, and findings in academic papers. These insights are turned into digestible Summary Flashcards. The knowledge extraction and summarization methods we use focus on accuracy.

  12. Writing Article Summaries

    An article summary is a short, focused paper about one scholarly article that is informed by a critical reading of that article. For argumentative articles, the summary identifies, explains, and analyses the thesis and supporting arguments; for empirical articles, the summary identifies, explains, and analyses the research questions, methods ...

  13. Research Summary- Structure, Examples, and Writing tips

    A research summary is a type of paper designed to provide a brief overview of a given study - typically, an article from a peer-reviewed academic journal. It is a frequent type of task encountered in US colleges and universities, both in humanitarian and exact sciences, which is due to how important it is to teach students to properly interact ...

  14. Research Summary: What is it & how to write one

    A research summary is a piece of writing that summarizes your research on a specific topic. Its primary goal is to offer the reader a detailed overview of the study with the key findings. A research summary generally contains the article's structure in which it is written. You must know the goal of your analysis before you launch a project.

  15. A Guide to Writing a Research Summary: Steps, Structure, and Tips

    A research summary or a research article comprehensively covers a topic. It is a brief overview of a study typically from a peer-reviewed journal. Many universities and colleges give such assignments and assess the students' performance based on how they interpret the scientific knowledge and data presented in the written academic article. If ...

  16. Free Text Summarizer

    100% free: Generate unlimited summaries without paying a penny Accurate: Get a reliable and trustworthy summary of your original text without any errors No signup: Use it without giving up any personal data Secure: No summary data is stored, guaranteeing your privacy Speed: Get an accurate summary within seconds, thanks to AI Flexible: Adjust summary length to get more (or less) detailed summaries

  17. Use AI To Summarize Scientific Articles

    SciSummary uses GPT-3.5 and GPT-4 models to provide summaries of any scientific articles or research papers. The technology learns as it goes as our team of PhDs analyze requested summaries and guides the training of the model. SciSummary makes it easy to stay up-to-date with the latest scientific breakthroughs and research findings, without ...

  18. Is AI ready to mass-produce lay summaries of research articles?

    She found that an AI summary of one of her research articles excluded information from a whole section. If researchers were looking for a paper with those details and consulted the AI summary ...

  19. Writing an Article Critique

    A summary of a research article requires you to share the key points of the article so your reader can get a clear picture of what the article is about. A critique may include a brief summary, but the main focus should be on your evaluation and analysis of the research itself.

  20. Summary of Research Articles

    This collection contains Summary of Research Articles (SRAs) published in the journal. An SRA is a standalone summary of a source article previously published in an Adis journal, or in a journal from another publisher. Articles (9 in this collection) Summary of Research: Overall Survival with Osimertinib in Resected EGFR-Mutated NSCLC ...

  21. PDF Summarizing a Research Article

    Like an abstract in a published research article, the purpose of an article summary is to give the reader a brief, structured overview of the study. To write a good summary, identify what information is important and condense that information for your reader. The better you understand a subject, the easier it is to explain it thoroughly and ...

  22. Bibliate

    Bibliate's summaries do a nice job breaking down complex studies i need to read. They help make research articles more digestable, which as a graduate student is extremely helpful. This app gives me the ability to generate a summary for any research article I want! I would highly recommend Bibliate for anyone who needs to read research articles ...

  23. TLDR This

    TLDR This is a Free online text summarizing tool that automatically condenses long articles, documents, essays, or papers into key summary paragraphs using state-of-the-art AI. ... TLDR This is for anyone who just needs to get the gist of a long article. You can read this summary, then go read the original article if you want to. Students. ...

  24. SMMRY

    Summarize my text in sentences. SMMRY summarizes text to save you time. Paste an article, text or essay in this box and hit summarize; we'll return a shortened copy for you to read. You can also summarize PDF and TXT documents by uploading a file or summarize online articles and webpages by pasting the URL below...

  25. Stroke rehabilitation in adults: summary of updated NICE guidance

    Introduction. Globally, stroke is the second leading cause of death and the third leading cause of death and disability combined.1 Around 100 000 people have strokes each year, and around 1.3 million people in the UK have survived a stroke.2 High quality rehabilitation can minimise the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social impacts for people who have had a stroke and their carers, and ...

  26. Scientists Confirm that Methane-Processing Microbes Produce a Fossil

    Summary Minerals can preserve microbial biosignatures in the rock record, where they serve as diagnostic indicators of ancient microbial processes like methane oxidation. In modern methane-rich environments, partnerships between anaerobic methane-oxidizing archaea (ANME) and sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) link the microbial cycling of carbon ...

  27. The Ratings View: Mar. 28, 2024

    In this week's summary of ratings views: Resilient economies curtail recession fears, but inflation risks may delay rate cuts. Credit conditions improving, but labor cost, real estate and geopolitical risks still loom. Higher rates continue to pressure commercial real estate asset valuations. Also: U.S. regional banks, U.S. transportation, Altice, synthetic fuels.

  28. FACT SHEET: President Biden Issues Executive Order and Announces New

    Coordinate Research to Advance the Health of Women in the Military. DoD will invest $10 million, contingent on available funds, in the Military Women's Health Research Partnership. This ...

  29. FactSet Research Systems: ASV Growth Will Likely Be Weak In FY 2024

    Summary. FactSet Research Systems is facing growth challenges due to layoffs in the banking sector and a weak market in private equity. FactSet competes with Bloomberg, Capital IQ, and Refinitiv ...

  30. What the data says about abortion in the U.S.

    The latest full summary of Guttmacher data came in the institute's report titled "Abortion Incidence and Service Availability in the United States, ... About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling ...