Unit 8: Evaluating Books & Articles
Lesson 5: Abstract
An abstract is a brief summary of the main points and conclusions of a book or article. Abstracts are listed at the beginning of a resource. Abstracts range from one to two sentences to lengthy paragraphs. Most subscription databases and some indices include abstracts in citations. Read the tips below to learn how to interpret abstracts.
- Did the author of the resource write the abstract? Abstracts written by the author are more reliable and accurate than those written by an editor or peer.
- Read the abstract to determine if the resource supports your research topic.
- If the abstract appears relevant, read the entire article or relevant book chapters.
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