Abstracts in simple words are a powerful, short and self-contained statement that describes your work. The components of abstract differ according to discipline. An abstract of a scientific work or social science may contain the contents, results, purpose and scope of the work. While on the other hand abstracts of humanities work may include the thesis statement, literature review and conclusion of the work.
When to write an abstract?
An abstract is written in different situations: when you are asked to write journals or online journals; when you apply for research grants; when writing a proposal for a book; when finishing the M.A. Thesis or Ph.D. dissertation; and when you are asked to write a conference paper.
Different types of abstracts:
There are two main types of abstracts, including Informative Abstracts and Descriptive Abstracts.
Both have different aims and different styles and components. Also, there is a third type, “Critical” but is rarely used. If you are confused on which type you should write better to ask your professor in order to avoid any hurdle at the end of the day.
In descriptive dissertation abstracts the writer indicates what type of information a reader found in the work. It does not make any judgment about the dissertation nor does it provides a conclusion and results of the research. Descriptive essay does incorporate keywords found in the text and may contain scope, methods and purpose of the research. This type of abstracts is usually short of about 100 or less words.
These types of abstracts are usually informative. With purpose, methods and scope of the work, it also includes conclusions and results and also the recommendation of the author. The length of dissertation abstracts varies, but is usually more than the 10% of the length of your dissertation.
How to write dissertation abstract?
The format of dissertation abstracts depends on the dissertation being abstracted. The elements of scientific research are totally different from that of the elements of a literature. However, there are several mandatory components, all abstracts share and some optional components that you can decide to include or not. When writing the dissertation abstracts keep the key points in mind, which include reason for writing; problem; research methodology; study results; and research implications.
Mandatory components of an abstract are: a full reference of the source, preceding the dissertation abstract; write the most essential information first; the same language style and type that you use in the original paper, including technical language; phrases or keywords that rapidly focus the work and identify the content; and powerful, clear and concise language.
Optional components of an abstract are: the thesis statement of the research, usually in the first sentence; literature review; and the same chronological structure as the original paper.
What not to write in an abstract?
An abstract should not be extensive and the writer should avoid adding information not contained in your final paper. An abstract should not define terms.
Writing a good dissertation abstract is not an easy task, but by following above steps you can easily write good abstract that help you write your final paper successfully.