Summaries

Objectivity

Summaries should not include the opinion of the summary writer at all, not even in the smallest phrases or through biased word choices. Because we often use value-laden words without realizing it, we can easily misrepresent an author's view or color it with our own opinions. Especially when editing, watch for any value-laden words like these:

positive negative
good bad
strong weak
conservative liberal
hard difficult
easy funny
interesting well-supported

Compare the two student-written examples closely to see how easily opinion can slip through in a seemingly straightforward summary sentence.

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Introduction