A Summary Essay provides an overview of a published work. The document would narrate the précis of the work, without any interpretations or distortions from the writer. Your tutor may ask you to prepare an outline that tells other readers what the book or article is about. As part of your academic learning, it is very important that you know how to write good abstracts. The subject or the work for which the outline is written can be a published book, an article published in a journal, a magazine or even a website. It is important to closely follow the work and reproduce the gist without arguing if the author is right or wrong. The outline college paper is usually written in a five-paragraph format and the document should be completed within the five paragraphs.
The heading should give the author name, year of publication, title of the work, city of publication, publisher name, etc. If the work appears in a journal or is part of an anthology, then give the page numbers on which the document appears and also the original publication name. You can use citation styles such as APA, Harvard, MLA, etc. The first paragraph should give details of the subject such as psychology, IT, management, marketing, etc. You can also give an overall idea of what the book covers and if it is meant for the general public, students, professionals or any other groups. In the second paragraph mention the main theme of the book and if it is a theoretical discussion or demonstrates real life cases. You can also mention the number of chapters and how they are organized.
In the third and fourth paragraphs, give more details such as ‘Chapters 1 to 4 give the theory and lay the foundation’, ‘Chapters 5 to 8 show the methodology’, ‘Chapters 9 to 12 give real life case studies’. If the number of chapters is more, then you can use two paragraphs to address all the chapters. In the final paragraph, provide a conclusion and speak of how the book would help the selected audience. To know how to write a good précis, you should have read the work and understood it. If your tutor asks you to write an outline on a journal article, then you should mention various theories covered, hypotheses that have been given, survey or lab experiments that have been conducted and so on.
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