b. Distinguish between main and subsidiary information.
c. Delete most details and examples, unimportant information, anecdotes, examples, illustrations, data etc.
d. Make an outline.
3. Paraphrase write in your own words .
a. Find alternative words/synonyms for words/phrases that express the main ideas - do not change specialised vocabulary and common words.
b. Identify the meaning relationships between the words/ideas - e.g. cause/effect, generalisation, contrast. Express these relationships in a different way.
c. Change the grammar of the text: rearrange words and sentences. Change nouns to verbs, adjectives to adverbs, etc., break up long sentences, combine short sentences.
d. Simplify the text. Reduce complex sentences to simple sentences, simple sentences to phrases, phrases to single words.
4. Rewrite the main ideas in complete sentences. Combine your notes into a piece of coherent writing. Use conjunctions and adverbs such as 'therefore', 'however', 'although', 'since', to show the connections between the ideas.
5. Check your work. Make sure your summary is:
a. in your own words
b. contains the main ideas
c. factually correct
d. objective: no personal ideas
Ø Reading for important points
Identifying what is important in a text depends on knowing where to look but it also depends on knowing what to look for the clues which help us to identify the important points and to separate them from less important details.
Discourse markers or signposts can be such clues. They can help you to find the important parts of a text. They can also warn you that some things in the text are not so important. Lets examine some of the signposts writers use.
1. These phrases indicate an important point:
The main I important point I conclusion I reason . . .
The point to note here . . .
Above all . . .
2. Sometimes we are told how many important points to expect. For example:
There are three major reasons . . .
1. Important points may be highlighted using italics, bold type or capitals:
Answers to questions in psychology depend very much on the way in which the questions are asked. To answer this particular question, we need to define both psychology and science.
4. 'But' and 'however' often indicate an important contrast, qualification or correction. For example:
The rising birth rate is not due to increased fertility,butto a sharp decline in the death rate.
5. Asking a question in a text is a way of highlighting the answer which follows. For example:
Why is a piped water supply so important? Disease due to contaminated water is a common cause of death in childhood.
6. A writer may repeat an important point to make sure it is understood. For example:
Death control can be achieved autonomously.In other words, the death rate can be cut without anything else changing.
7. Conclusions are usually important. Look out for signposts such as: