The purpose for summarizing a passage is to condense information, either to provide an overview for others to read, or for your research project.
Organization: In the first sentence include the author’s full name, the title of the article, and the author’s intent for writing the passage. Then organize the main ideas, no details, into a paragraph. Make sure to use your own words.
Usually a summary is about one-forth to one-third the length of the original work.
NOTE: Summarizing is not to be confused with paraphrasing. When we paraphrase, we take a single idea or concept from a passage. When we summarize, we take the main ideas.
How to write a summary:
- First, read the passage to get an overview of the author’s main points and how information is organized.
- Then read the passage again. This time, underline the main points, and any major details. Do not include any minor details.
- Next, using the main points, create an outline in your own words.
- Then, write a first draft without looking at the article or text. Your first draft should be approximately one-third the length of the original.
- Last, write your final draft.
- Like the one-sentence summary, you need to include the author’s full name and the title of the article in the topic sentence.
Assignment: One-Paragraph Summary
Assignment: Read the article on “School Uniforms” by Hannah Boyd, and then write a one-paragraph summary.