An abstract is a summary of a piece of writing such as a paper, article, or book. It appears at the beginning of the document. The main ideas from the content should be covered in the abstract. The length of this introduction should be no more than 10% of the length of the document, typically a paragraph about 125 words in length. The reader is introduced to the document's chief content in the abstract. The reader will often decide whether or not to read on after scanning the abstract.

A good abstract will include the purpose, scope, method (if appropriate), results, recommendations, and conclusions of an article or other document. The abstract is located directly after the title page on its own page. The heading at the top of the page is "Abstract."

The paragraph should not be indented.

An example of an effective abstract is:

This paper examines the organizational culture at Newport Business Institute in western Pennsylvania. Newport Business Institute is a privately owned online educational institution that has developed an organizational culture that contributes to achieving its mission. Complimentary to Newport Business Institute's mission statement is a set of objectives or values that set the tone for the educational organizational culture. The institute meets its mission and objectives through an open systems approach and through empowering faculty and students. Politics play a minor role at Newport Business Institute; however, social values, culture, and ethics play a large role. The institute nurtures a stable, growing educational organizational environment. (Calvano, 2011, Abstract).


Calvano, B. (2011). Organizational culture. Retrieved from University of Phoenix EDD/712 Leadership in Contemporary Organization website.