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Never underestimate the importance of the abstract since it can play a crucial role for your whole research. In most of the cases, journal editors judge by the abstracts whether to send manuscripts for review or not. Also, your abstract can either stir up readers’ interest in reading your work or leave them completely indifferent. That’s why your abstract should present your research in the best light possible. The following pieces of advice might come in handy while writing this section of your work.
Tips for Writing the Abstract
Write the abstract after writing the paper
While some researchers tend to write their abstract right after completing their research, you might consider writing your paper first. The chances are that your research lasted for at least several months, so you might not remember every aspect of it clearly. Writing your paper will refresh your memory and help you to write a logical, well-structured abstract.
Present your aim using background information
You should make it clear for your readers why the issue you deal with in your research is worth discussing. Provide some background information which proves the topicality of your work’s subject. Then, explain how your research addresses this issue.
Describe your methods
Let the readers know about your methodology, so they could have a better understanding of your research. This subsection shouldn’t be very long. You just need to list the most important techniques you applied on all the stages of conducting your research and briefly describe how exactly you used them.
Outline your findings
You should pay a proper attention to writing this subsection. Probably, it is the most important part of your abstract. Your readers are eager to know what the results of your research are. Thus, this part should be very informative and logical. Try to avoid including unnecessary information. Instead, provide your readers with solid facts here.
Write a conclusion
In the last sentences of your abstract state a concise summary of your findings. Provide your readers with a general idea of what was revealed with the help of your research. Also, here you can write the value of your work and its theoretical or practical implications.
Proofread it carefully
When you’ve finished writing your abstract, proofread it several times to make sure that there are no obvious flaws there. Apart from grammar, spelling, and style, pay attention to the contents itself: make sure that not a sentence from the abstract contradicts your paper. Sometimes it can be different to spot mistakes in your own work, so you can ask somebody else to proofread your abstract once again.
All in all, keep in mind that with your abstract your research is basically making the first impression on readers. And it does matter.