Abstract is the summary of a thesis which is very brief in other words the presentation or illustration should be correct, accurate and clear but complete. It lets the readers know the brief summary of a research article, thesis, review, conference proceeding or any in-depth analysis of a particular subject. It is used to help the readers quickly ascertain the paper’s purpose and acts as the point-of-entry for any given academic paper and it is always placed at the beginning.
Abstracts are aimed at compiling a body of literature for that particular subject although the terms precis or synopsis are often used to refer to the same thing but in business or management reports, an executive summary is usually used and contains more information than the abstract does.
There are usually four elements of a good, academic abstract relevant to the completed work:
(1) the research focus (i.e. statement of the problem/research issues (s) addressed;
(2) the research methods used (experimental research, case studies, questionnaires, etc.);
(3) the results/findings of the research;
(4) the main conclusions and recommendations, and
(5) the keyword(s) aimed at informing areas of research or terms as basis of thoughts needed for scientific computerization.
Abstract is written on a special page in the form of a paragraph using single space on Times New Romans 12 and the keywords should be in alphabetical order placed before the first chapter of the thesis and its length usually varies by discipline and university requirements. Some contain ranging from 200 to 500 words, but very rarely more than a page. It may or may not have the section title of abstract explicitly listed as an antecedent to content, but typically sectioned logically as an overview of what appears in the paper, with any of the following subheadings: background, introduction, objectives, methods, results, and conclusions. There are two kinds of abstracts structured abstracts and unstructured abstracts. Structured abstracts contain subheadings explicitly given while unstructured abstracts comprise only one paragraph with no explicit subheadings. Abstracts may be informative and descriptive abstracts. Informative abstracts are known as the complete abstracts which are a compendious summary of a paper’s substance including its background, purpose, methodology, results, and conclusion. It is usually between 100 and 200 words, while the descriptive abstracts summarize the paper’s structure, its major topics and key points. Descriptive abstracts are also known as limited abstracts or indicative abstracts that describe what the paper covers without delving into its substance.
In conclusion, abstract briefly summarizes a thesis or synopsis so by reading the abstract the readers can understand what is in a scientific thesis, that is why abstract should clearly, briefly, accurately and easily figured out consisting of four elements, i.e. logical arguments worth researching, approaches used to solve a problem (methods), results gained as well as the conclusion drawn.