Informative and descriptive Abstracts. Abstracts. An abstract is a summary of a body of information. Sometimes, abstracts are in fact called summaries--sometimes, executive summaries or executive abstracts. There are different kinds of abstracts.
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Abstracts • An abstract is a summary of a body of information. Sometimes, abstracts are in fact called summaries--sometimes, executive summaries or executive abstracts. There are different kinds of abstracts. • technical report uses two types: the descriptive abstract and the informative abstract.
Descriptive Abstracts • The descriptive abstract provides a description of the report's main topic and purpose as well an overview of its contents. It is very short usually a brief one- or two-sentence paragraph. • In this report design, it appears on the title page. • You may have noticed something similar to this type of abstract at the beginning of journal articles. • In this type of abstract, you don't summarize any of the facts or conclusions of the report. The descriptive abstract does not say something like this:
Descriptive abstracts are generally quite short, often no more than 100-150 words in length. • They describe the main information in the paper, including its purpose, methods and scope, but they do not describe its results or recommendations. • Only the major conclusion may be mentioned, but many descriptive abstracts do not include even that.
Informative abstracts communicate specific information from the study, including its purpose, methods and scope. Unlike descriptive abstracts, informative abstracts also list the results and major conclusions of the study, and recommendations are included as well if these are appropriate. • They are generally longer than descriptive abstracts, but an informative abstract should never be more than longer than 10% of the article or study itself.
This is the style of summarizing you find in the informative abstract. Instead, the descriptive abstract says something like this:
The descriptive abstract is little like a program teaser. • Or, to use a different analogy, it’s like major first-level headings of the table of contents have been rewritten in paragraph format. • teaser 戏弄者，喜欢戏弄别人的人
A descriptive abstract outlines the topics covered in a piece of writing so the reader can decide whether to read the entire document. In many ways, the descriptive abstract is like a table of contents in paragraph form. • Unlike reading an informative abstract, reading a descriptive abstract cannot substitute for reading the document because it does not capture the content of the piece. Nor does a descriptive abstract fulfill the other main goals of abstracts as well as informative abstracts do. For all these reasons, descriptive abstracts are less and less common. Check with your instructor or the editor of the journal to which you are submitting a paper for details on the appropriate type of abstract for your audience.
Sample Descriptive Abstract • We continue to document all major climatic variables in the uplands and floodplains at Bonanza Creek. In addition, we have documented the successional changes in microclimate in 9 successional upland and floodplain stands at Bonanza Creek (BNZ) and in four elevational locations at Caribou-Poker Creek (CPCRW). A sun photometer is operated cooperatively with NASA to estimate high-latitude atmospheric extinction coefficients for remote-sensing images. Electronic data are collected monthly and loaded into a database which produces monthly summaries. The data are checked for errors, documented, and placed on-line on the BNZ Web page. Climate data for the entire state have been summarized for the period of station records and krieged to produce maps of climate zones for Alaska based on growing-season and annual temperature and precipitation.
An informative abstract provides detail about the substance of a piece of writing because readers will sometimes rely on the abstract alone for information. Informative abstracts typically follow this format: • Identifying information (bibliographic citation or other identification of the document) • Concise restatement of the main point, including the initial problem or other background • Methodology (for experimental work) and key findings • Major conclusions • Informative abstracts usually appear in indexes like Dissertation Abstracts International; however, your instructor may ask you to write one as a cover sheet to a paper as well.
Informative Abstracts • The informative abstract, as its name implies, provides information from the body of the report specifically, the key facts and conclusions. • To put it another way, this type of abstract summarizes the key information from every major section in the body of the report.
Informative abstracts communicate specific information from the study, including its purpose, methods and scope. • Unlike descriptive abstracts, informative abstracts also list the results and major conclusions of the study, and recommendations are included as well if these are appropriate. • They are generally longer than descriptive abstracts, but an informative abstract should never be more than longer than 10% of the article or study itself.
It is as if someone had taken a yellow marker and highlighted all the key points in the body of the report then vaccuumed them up into a one- or two-page document. (Of course, then some editing and rewriting would be necessary to make the abstract readable.) • Specifically, the requirements for the informative abstract are as follows:
Summarizes the key facts, conclusions, and other important information in the body of the report. • Usually about 10 percent of the length of the full report: for example, an informative abstract for a 10-page report would be 1 page. This ratio stops after about 30 pages, however. For 50- or 60-page reports, the abstract should not go over 3 to 4 pages.
Summarizes the key information from each of the main sections of the report, and proportionately so (a 3-page section of a 10-page report ought to take up about 30 percent of the informative abstract). • Phrases information in a very dense, compact way. Sentence are longer than normal and are crammed with information. The abstract tries to compact information down to that 10-percent level. • It's expected that the writing in an informative abstract will be dense and heavily worded. (However, do not omit normal words such as the, a, and an.
This last point is particularly important. People often confuse the kinds of writing expected in descriptive and informative abstracts. • Study the difference between the informative and descriptive phrasing in the following examples:
Based on an exhaustive review of currently available products, this report concludes that none of the available grammar-checking software products provides any useful function to writers. • This report provides conclusions and recommendations on the grammar-checking software that is currently available.
Informative • Based on an exhaustive review of currently available products, this report concludes that none of the available grammar-checking software products provides any useful function to writers. • Descriptive • This report provides conclusions and recommendations on the grammar-checking software that is currently available.
Sample Informative Abstract based on Non-experimental Work • On November 22, 1994, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published special rules to establish nonessential experimental populations of gray wolves (Canis lupus) in Yellowstone National Park and central Idaho. The nonessential experimental population areas include all of Wyoming, most of Idaho, and much of central and southern Montana. A close reading of the special regulations indicates that, unintentionally, the language reads as though wolf control measures apply only outside of the experimental population area. This proposed revision is intended to amend language in the special regulations so that it clearly applies within the Yellowstone nonessential experimental population area and the central Idaho nonessential experimental population area. This proposed change will not affect any of the assumptions and earlier analysis made in the environmental impact statement or other portions of the special rules. (accessed January 26, 1998)
Sample Informative Abstract based on Experimental Work • Research reported by Daly, Miller, and their colleagues suggests that writing apprehension is related to a number of factors we do not yet fully understand. This study suggests that included among those factors should be the belief that writing ability is a gift. Giftedness, as it is referred to in the study, is roughly equivalent to the Romantic notion of original genius. Results from a survey of 247 postsecondary students enrolled in introductory writing courses at two institutions indicate that higher levels of belief in giftedness are correlated with higher levels of writing apprehension, lower self-assessments of writing ability, lower levels of confidence in achieving proficiency in certain writing activities and genres, and lower self-assessments of prior experience with writing instructors. Significant differences in levels of belief in giftedness were also found among students who differed in their perceptions of the most important purpose for writing, with students who identified "to express your own feelings about something" as the most important purpose for writing having the highest mean level of belief in giftedness. Although the validity of the notion that writing ability is a special gift is not directly addressed, the results suggest that belief in giftedness may have deleterious effects on student writers.
Informative vs. Descriptive abstracts Language focus: Distinguishing between Informative and Descriptive abstracts • Purpose: The following exercise aims to help you learn to distinguish between Informative and Descriptive abstracts. • Technical: Use the back button to re-start the exercise. If you experience any problems, or have questions or comments about this exercise, please click on the icon in the left-hand corner at any time during the exercise to send an automated email message to your teacher. • Estimated time: 20 minutes. • Press the button below to enter the exercises • http://sana.tkk.fi/awe/style/reporting/exercises/abstract01x.html
Informative or descriptive? • Communication between humans consists of more than just the verbal component that we all associate with common human interaction. Nonverbal elements are essential parts of full and effective form of communication and conveyance of idea from one individual to another. Nonverbal factors include such things as facial expressions, gestures, body movements, stance, and gaze. These factors are unconsciously and unintentionally present in the communication ritual of humans, and full conveyance of a person’s ideas or emotions cannot be realized and transferred to another in absence of these factors. It is only when these nonverbal aspects of communication are represented that human social interaction can occur in its complete form. This holds true for face-to-face interactions as well as when these interactions take place over a virtual collaborative environment via a networked computer system.
This thesis explores human social interactions within the context of virtual collaborative work environments. Specifically, this thesis will examine the role of gestures in personal expression in human social interaction as it pertains to collaborative engineering environment where users or the involved parties are interested in collaborating in a geographically distributed setting to achieve a certain goal in their work process. The significance of social interaction, composed of personal expression and social feedback elements, in a collaborative interaction setting is discussed. Gestures, a specific element of nonverbal behavior that plays an integral role in communication that takes place in human interactions, is explored in particular. With the aim of enabling a more complete social interaction capability for a user of a collaborative system, a gesture expression prototype is designed. The proposed design will allow certain gestures to be made at will by the user with the effect of increasing the level of personal expression and social feedback in the virtual collaborative environment.
This is not an informative abstract. Are any results described? No! • Yes, this is a descriptive abstract! Although it describes what it will do, it does not give any specific results.
Inspection consists of two major components, visual search and decision making. Unlike the popular alternative of automated inspection devices, humans are highly adaptable inspectors and are very good at decision making. However, humans have imperfect memory and are often poor at the visual search component. This work focuses on improving human visual search behavior in order to improve inspection performance. Previous methods of improving inspection performance include training and the use of job aids. Also, the attraction of the eyes to a dynamic visual stimulus has been noted in the literature. A method of training a systematic search pattern using these previous findings is proposed using training with a job aid. The job aid consists of a small cursor that traces a systematic search pattern on the item to be inspected. • The effects of training with practice using the job aid were compared to training with practice without the job aid. Quantitative comparisons were made based on the performance measures of inspection time, mean search time, mean stopping time, and defect detection rate and on the process measures of number of fixations, fixation times, and saccade distances. None of these measures showed a significant difference between the two types of training. Although both training methods significantly improved search performance, none of these measures showed a significant difference between the two types of training. • Suggestions for further research are made such as experimenting on different inspection conditions to see if the job aid does show a significant improvement over the other training method for different tasks.
Look at the third paragraph again! Note the use of the verb "show" (=osoittaa) to introduce the findings of the study. This is an informative abstract! • Yes, this is an informative abstract! Note how specific results (shown below in blue) are described.
This thesis examines quality assurance standards and practices for the development of software systems in a geographically distributed environment. This thesis will also identify the problems that distributed software engineering teams face when collaborating on a project. It will be shown that as a software project becomes distributed, the need to verify the quality of the software process increases. A special focus will also be given to the problems that affected the performance of the Quality Assurance Engineer (QAE) in such environment. This study found that the team must be kept informed of all the events surrounding quality assurance and one way to do this is by creating a repository, such as a web site, to store all quality assurance work. Thus, every member will have access to the QAE’s work throughout the software development process, potentially increasing the performance of the whole team.
Yes, this is an informative abstract! Note how specific results (shown below in blue) are described. • Look at the text again! Note the use of the verb "find" (=havaita) to introduce the findings of the study. This is an informative abstract!
In the past twenty years, there has been a new wave of global interest in project finance as a tool for financing capital-intensive projects all around the world. The crucial elements in structuring a project finance transaction are: the risk allocation process, the determination of the best type of ownership structure, and the development of a complete and integrated set of financial and contractual arrangements. This thesis examines the ownership and financing structures in International Project Finance. Selection of the form of business organization for a project is an important step in project development and depends on a variety of business, legal, accounting, tax and regulatory factors. This thesis presents four forms of ownership structure most frequently used for developing a project and highlights the reasons of selecting one of them. • The variety of sources of funds, with a trend towards the increasing development of sophisticated capital market instruments, provides project sponsors with flexibility to select the appropriate structure to finance a project. This thesis presents the three types of capital used in project financing and details the alternatives for financing a project from its development phase to its operating phase showing that the project financing is a dynamic process. • After having developed a basic framework for structuring an international project finance transaction, this thesis ends by describing projects financed on a project-financing basis. These projects are characterized by some specific features, such as refinancing prior to project completion or use of capital market financing. • Look at the sentences again! This is not an info • Yes, this is a descriptive abstract! Although it describes what it will do, it does not give any specific results. rmative abstract. Are any results described? No!
The civil engineering community is currently moving towards the continuous monitoring of civil structures in order to forecast their unavoidable failure with enough precision. So-called smart technologies seem to be well adapted to this specific task. For a civil structure, such as a bridge or a dam, a monitoring smart system often includes a set of sensors, whose data is passed onto a controller. The latter analyzes the data and outputs commands to a set of actuators that will modify the structure properties in response to the new sensors' environment. Therefore, the structure can continuously adapt to its surrounding environment. • Artificial neural networks are electronic devices whose structure resembles the structure of the human brain. Such devices can be trained to output desired signals when fed with specific inputs. Consequently, neural networks can theoretically act as controllers in monitoring smart systems. • This thesis first presents artificial neural networks in details, since this topic remains unfamiliar in the civil engineering literature. An entire chapter is also devoted to the training of these artificial neural networks that are likely to be used in civil engineering applications. The thesis then introduces the new concept of neurocontrol, i.e. control using neural networks. Finally, a simulation run under MATLAB applies this concept of neurocontrol to a cantilever beam supporting fluctuating loads. • Look at the sentences again! This is not an informative abstract. Are any results described? No! • Yes, this is a descriptive abstract! Although it describes what it will do, it does not give any specific results.
Omits introductory explanation, unless that is the focus of the main body of the report. Definitions and other background information are omitted if they are not the major focus of the report. The informative abstract is not an introduction to the subject matter of the report梐nd it is not an introduction! • Omits citations for source borrowings. If you summarize information that you borrowed from other writers, you do not have to repeat the citation in the informative abstract (in other words, no brackets with source numbers and page numbers). • Includes key statistical detail. Don't sacrifice key numerical facts to make the informative abstract brief. One expects to see numerical data in an informative abstract. • Omits descriptive-abstract phrasing. You should not see phrasing like this: "This report presents conclusions and recommendations from a survey done on grammar-checking software." Instead, the informative abstract presents the details of those conclusions and recommendations.
How to Write a Financial Executive Summary • Writing a business plan is a necessary step to secure funds to start or maintain a business. One of the most important parts of the business plan is the financial executive summary. This usually comes at the beginning of the business plan and provides potential investors with an idea for how much money is needed and the potential investment return.
Instructions • Include a description of your company and/or business idea. This includes the products and/or services in which the company will produce. Be sure to also state your mission statement clearly with the description of your company. A mission statement is ultimately the goal of your company. • Provide a short paragraph detailing past performance during the past five years. Also provide a projection for performance over the next five years. If you are just starting out, focus on the projection. Include a graph for both past and future performance along with a brief narrative. • Sponsored Links • RightWriter Grammar Tool RightWriter solves grammar problems Write like a genius, no one knows • Right-Writer.com/Fix-Grammar-Now
Include a Sources and Uses diagram. This is a high-level summary of the money you need and where that money is coming from. For instance, if you need $100,000, potential sources are bonds, loans, stock issuance, direct investment and preferred stock. Potential uses are working capital, inventory, business start-up costs, salaries, and general business expenses. (See Resources for an example of a Sources and Uses diagram.) • Create a summary, about 100 words, of the Sources and Uses diagram. This will be particularly helpful for non-finance professionals. Use clear language free of industry jargon.
Provide a time horizon for the investment, also known as payback period. This is how long you predict it will take for the investors to get their investment monies back. Create at least three different scenarios: a best case, base case, and worst case. • Provide an estimate for the return potential in each scenario. The best case scenario must have the highest return potential and the worst case scenario will have the lowest return potential. • Create a boilerplate (regular) version of your financial executive summary for general requests. However, if asked to present to a group of potential investors, always tailor the summary to fit the needs of the audience. For instance, if you‘re going to a room full of people who want to purchase an equity stake in the company, focus on returns for equity stakeholders.