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A 10-step guide to make your research paper abstract more effective

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❶For studies in the humanities and social sciences, the abstract is typically descriptive. People use the abstract to decide whether to read the rest of the paper, so the abstract for such a paper is important.

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The abstract should contain the most important key words referring to method and content: Your abstract should read like an overview of your paper, not a proposal for what you intended to study or accomplish.

This paper will look at the human genome project and its goals. I will prove that scientists have ethical and moral questions about genetic engineering because of this project. Begun in , the human genome project intends to map the 23 chromosomes that provide the blueprint for the human species. The project has both scientific and ethical goals.

The scientific goals underscore the advantages of the genome project, including identifying and curing diseases and enabling people to select the traits of their offspring, among other opportunities. Ethically, however, the project raises serious questions about the morality of genetic engineering. To handle both the medical opportunities and ethical dilemmas posed by the genome project, scientists need to develop a clear set of principles for genetic engineering and to continue educating the public about the genome project.

The examples above are taken from Form and Style 10th ed. The following are specifications for an abstract in APA style, used in the social sciences, such as psychology or anthropology.

If you are in another discipline, check with your professor about the format for the abstract. Many papers in the social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering sciences follow IMRaD structure: People use the abstract to decide whether to read the rest of the paper, so the abstract for such a paper is important.

Because the abstract provides the highlights of the paper, you should draft your abstract after you have written a full draft of the paper.

Typically, an abstract for an IMRaD paper or presentation is one or two paragraphs long — words. Writers should follow a checklist consisting of: Following this checklist should increase the chance of people taking the time to obtain and read your complete paper. Now that the use of on-line publication databases is prevalent, writing a really good abstract has become even more important than it was a decade ago. Abstracts have always served the function of "selling" your work.

But now, instead of merely convincing the reader to keep reading the rest of the attached paper, an abstract must convince the reader to leave the comfort of an office and go hunt down a copy of the article from a library or worse, obtain one after a long wait through inter-library loan.

In a business context, an "executive summary" is often the only piece of a report read by the people who matter; and it should be similar in content if not tone to a journal paper abstract.

Despite the fact that an abstract is quite brief, it must do almost as much work as the multi-page paper that follows it. In a computer architecture paper, this means that it should in most cases include the following sections. Each section is typically a single sentence, although there is room for creativity. In particular, the parts may be merged or spread among a set of sentences.


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Informative abstract: Abstracts present the essential elements of a longer work in a short and powerful statement. The Word Count feature of Microsoft Word can help you keep track of how long your abstract is and help you hit your target length. Example 1: Humanities abstract The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel.

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How to Write an Abstract. Philip Koopman, Carnegie Mellon University October, Abstract. Writing an efficient abstract is hard work, but will repay you with increased impact on the world by enticing people to read your publications. Make sure that all the components of a good abstract are included in the next one you write.

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Sometimes having someone look at your abstract with fresh eyes can provide perspective and help you spot possible typos and other errors. Things to Consider When Writing an Abstract The format of your abstract also depends on the type of paper you are writing. Writing an Abstract for an IMRaD Paper Many papers in the social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering sciences follow IMRaD structure: their main sections are entitled Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion.

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This step guide will help authors prepare an effective abstract. An abstract is like a movie trailer. The complete guide to writing a brilliant research paper If you are looking for help in writing your research paper and want all the resources A step guide to make your research paper abstract more effective. Clarinda Cerejo | Oct. Writing an Abstract. What is an abstract? For help with formatting the dissertation abstract, words to words, maximum. How do I summarize the core of the paper’s topic to build a cohesive abstract? Write the abstract as the last step of the writing process. Review the .