Research Paper Needs: Making the Abstract
Although it is not part of the research itself, the abstract does serve an important purpose. It allows others to quickly scan the gist of your paper to see whether it may be useful for their research.
But since there are so many research databases out there, it is necessary to come up with a captivating abstract so that researchers will consider reading what you have done. Here are some pointers to help you with your abstract.
1. Briefly include key points
The abstract should give a summary of what your paper contains so that readers know whether your paper will be useful to them. Thus, your abstract should have the following:
- Purpose of the study
- Significance to others
- Methods used
- Summary of results
Researchers need a glimpse of each aspect to determine if your research can contribute to theirs. Just be careful not to explain too much because that can deter people who are in a hurry from viewing your work.
2. Use “keywords” in your abstract
Similar to articles that researchers need, particular “keywords” are needed to lead people to your study. Carefully consider what these keywords may be and include them in your abstract so search engines can prioritize your research.
3. Do not include long quotations or complex figures
When other researchers view abstracts, they are not yet interested in analyzing the data or deciphering long-winded quotes. What they want to know is how your study ties in with theirs, meaning they are concerned with the whys and hows of the abstract.
But once they realize that your study is something they may need, they will then view your details.
4. Try not to use abbreviations, acronyms, or too many difficult terms.
Some people think that their study is only beneficial to researchers working in their field which is why they use terminology that their peers ought to know. This, however, is not always true. A study’s purpose, methodology, or results CAN be useful to someone researching a different field. So make sure your abstract is easy to understand. Leave acronyms, abbreviations, and such in the main paper where there is much room to explain everything clearly.
5. Double-check your work
As a synopsis to the research paper, some people do not give much importance to a final double-check. Yet this is important as it reflects on your professionalism. And sadly, some may think that an abstract filled with errors must mean that the study itself is also faulty.
So check your abstract for errors, repetitions, vagueness, and other issues so that it can successfully guide people to your research.
As the gist of your work, the abstract is an essential part of your research paper. It explains what you have done and discovered, and it allows others to know how your paper may aid them in their academic journey. Take note of the tips above so your abstract can lead many others to your research.