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Summarising Correctly and Efficiently  
 
Summarising correctly

Summarising is the art of using your own words to reduce the content of a passage to include only essential information. Summaries have considerably fewer words than the original, but they still provide a clear indication of the main points made by the author. Summarising is a useful tool for effective study and an essential part of efficient notetaking.

A good summary:

  • Succinctly states the main theme or message of the passage
  • Retains any emphasis or focus placed on the topic by the author
  • Omits all unnecessary background information or detail
  • Offers no critique of the original passage.

Similar to paraphrasing, if a summary is needed to support your argument then make sure that you have included the essential elements. Be aware, however, that it is academically dishonest to change the content of a passage, or omit parts of it, to turn an unsuitable source into apparent evidence. Check the tips on summarising for more details.

Writing and Plagiarism
 
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