97 PRS Proofreading and Editing Service PhD Experts • All Academic Areas • Fast Turnaround • High Quality 6.2.2 Summing It All Up: The Abstract While covering letters are required less often with today’s online submission procedures than they once were, the need for an abstract when submitting an academic or scientific article is more common, even in disciplines that once would not have used such an initial summary of the paper to follow. So in most cases it’s best to plan on including an abstract from the beginning, regardless of your subject and field, and to recognise that a good abstract, like a good covering letter or a good introduction, requires a lot of consideration and you will likely need to return to it and make adjustments a few times before it’s finished. It’s useful to draft your abstract early in the writing process, as it can help you focus on the essential elements of your research and results as you work on your paper, but your abstract will certainly need to be edited and rewritten once your paper is finished, and probably again after you’ve had a colleague or other qualified reader look it over for you, which is highly recommended in the case of an abstract. As with your title, it’s virtually impossible to put too much time and effort into improving and polishing your abstract because it is often amidst the abstract that an editor is either won or lost, and the situation is similar after publication, when readers often decide whether to read your entire paper or not on the basis of the abstract they find through an online (or other kind of) search. So the abstract of a paper can be the most important part of an article, for good or ill. An academic or scientific abstract should summarise the contents of the paper it precedes briefly and comprehensively. It should not contain information that isn’t present in the paper and it should report, not evaluate, what can be found in the paper. Like the title, the abstract needs to be precise, concise and as engaging as possible, but it also needs to be densely packed with information. PARt III: commUnIcAtIng wItH JoURnAl edItoRs: sUBmIssIon, AccePtAnce, RevIsIon And ReJectIon