Abstract Preparation

An abstract is a condensed version of a longer piece of writing. The objective of the abstract is to highlight main points while concisely describing the content and scope of the project.

Each professional journal or meeting will have its own guidelines for abstract preparation; be sure to follow these guidelines carefully!

5 Elements

Title and Author

The title should be short, but descriptive, and summarize the abstract. Following the title, the names of all authors and their institutional affiliation are listed.


The introduction is the first part of the abstract which introduces and describes the study; the introduction outlines the question addressed by the research. The final sentence of the introduction describes the purpose of the study.


The methods section summarizes how the study was designed and carried out (research design; research setting; number of patients enrolled in the study and how they were selected; a description of the intervention, if appropriate; listing of outcome variables and how they were measured). The statistical methods used to analyze the data are described within this section, as well.


The results text includes a summary of what you found, as specfically as possible.


Here you state concisely what can be summarized and moreover, the generalizable implications of these summaries.

*Of note, regarding verb tenses, the common practice is to express the work being described in the past tense.