As a high school teacher, I have conducted a range of study skills workshops to senior students. As a casual tutor for Student Services at the University of Wollongong, I delivered lunch times study skills workshops as well as individual consultations. Many of these ideas and strategies are used by students of different abilities and learning needs – try this version of summarising to help make useful notes for assignments, or exam study.
When summarising, you should aim to reduce the information to 25% of the original. It helps to read the article or chapter several times to develop a clear understanding of the author’s ideas, meaning and details. If you record your summary in an outline format in your own words, you will find it quite easy to re-write your own sentences and avoid plagiarism.
- develop heading from topic sentence
- write bullet points using key words
- write summary directly from your points
- refer back to original to check accuracy
There is a specific exercise to practice your skills on my notetaking page.