What I have understood till date is that abstract summarizes the work done in the research article (Journal + Conference), and so does the conclusion section.

However, the conclusion section not only summarizes the work (like abstract) but also give a hint of what results were produced?

Can someone best explain what to (and what not to) include in Abstract section? Similarly in the conclusion section


2 Answers 2


What exactly goes into the abstract depends on your field / research problem. It is helpful to remember when the abstract/conclusion is read and what purpose it should fulfill.

The abstract is normally read before the actual paper and the reader needs to decide whether or not the paper is interesting to them and if it worth to invest the time reading it. Therefore, it should include

  • the problem that was tackled (maybe with a motivation for that problem)
  • the methods used
  • what makes the paper stand out from similar work
  • what kind of results you got

The conclusion is read in the end and should sum up what you want the reader to remember about your work. A motivation is probably not necessary because they took the time to read (most of) your work so it is unlikely they were not interested. The content is similar to the abstract but more focused on the results.

  • the problem that was solved
  • the methods used
  • what makes the paper stand out from similar work
  • a more in-depth description of the results
  • limitations
  • future work

As for the abstract, it could include the following;

  • Minor background motivation
  • Short brief into existing limitation and problem
  • The objective of the paper
  • What questions have you answered
  • Approach
  • Most significant result(s)
  • Limitation.

Some of the above could be left out (such as background etc). However, your abstract should give a beautiful snap-shot of your entire work

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