What should abstracts contain?
Abstracts have a really helpful function, letting readers interested in a particular topic decide quickly if they are interested in a given study, dissertation, or thesis. An abstract may be simply described as a clear and concise summary of a written work, allowing quick orientation on what the paper contains.
The abstract may also be considered as a form of an advertisement, as well-written may effectively encourage readers to go into details, and quite the opposite, discourage them with uninteresting abstract. It is crucial though to keep objective language instead of big pampering phrases.
We may enumerate three basic roles an abstract plays. First is attracting attention, and encouraging to read the whole work. Another important and quite handy function is being a summary of the written paper. Instead of scanning the whole thesis over and over again, the reader may simply use the abstract.
Through reading the abstract, it’s quite easy to follow the writer’s thoughts and ideas, to see the big picture, and the whole idea and arguments clearly.
Creating a conference abstract
You may also be asked or recommended to create a conference abstract, which may differ from an abstract to a written paper. It may contain information about the genre of your presentation, and a few keywords that best describe the topic of your speech.
A conference abstract does not require you to create any long written form, you may simply use it later as a sketch for your presentation to follow during the conference. Remember though such an abstract has the same advertising role for the organizers and the potential audience of the conference to decide if they are interested.
How to create a good abstract?
There are some general rules which you should follow to create a good abstract, yet read the requirements of the institution you are going to submit the abstract. The first thing to remember is the length – between 1500-2500 characters or 250-350 words.
Use Times New Roman font, 12-point font size, 1.5 spacing, line spacing and normal margins, and headings to show the main points of the abstract.
The language used should definitely be objective, with consistent text, and the lingo used.
Start the abstract with the title at the top of the page which clearly states what it is about, then place your name.
It’s time for a few paragraphs starting with the introduction and objectives in the first one. The paragraph should explain the main idea of the presentation, and the reason why this particular topic has been chosen. Describe the problem, its relevancy, and possible improvements. Use about 400 characters for the first part.
Next focus on the methods and data you have used in your scientific study. mention the details connected with the study, such as the place and time, the subjects, or the software. Describe any surveys, or research used.
The longest part of your abstract, of about 600 characters, should definitely focus on the main part of your work, the results of your study, presenting the facts, figures, and data confirming your claim.
The last part is the conclusions about your work, its influence on life, and your field. Use a maximum of 600 characters.