Summary Writing – The CBSE Way

Man created remote to avoid going over to the TV every time to switch a channel.

Huge articles were always there, some too huge that if we had such an article in exam; we would end up reading it all the three hours.

To tackle this, man created short notes and summaries. Why re-read huge articles again and again when you can get the gist of it in just 1/3 rd of its length? Sound’s better no?

Summaries can be of variable length depending on our requirement and the amount of detail we need in our summaries.

Steps in writing a summary

1. Make notes of the article

Make notes of the article first, usually in examinations like that conducted by CBSE, you’ll be asked to write summary using your notes.

If you are fuzzy about note making, you may follow these links to read about them.

  1. Note making – The CBSE Way (Quick read)
  2. Learn Note Making (Detailed with example)

Complete the sentences from your notes

Take each subheading of your notes, and complete the same sentences. Make sure your completed sentences are grammatically correct.

For example:

An excerpt from our note making example here:

  1. Location and Origin

    1. Small village of Somnathpur
    2. Commissioned by Soma Dandanayaka, min. of hoyasala king.

This portion can be included in our summary as follows:

The temple of Somnath is situated in a small village called Somnathpur. It was commissioned by Soma Dandanayaka, Minister of Hoyasala King.

3. Add more points from the main article

After completing sentences from your notes, you may add some other important points from the main article which you feel would add value to the summary.

4. Trim down the summary to fit word limit

Now trim down little tid-bits from the draft summary you made so as to fit into the word limit. Usually, you can limit the words to 1/3 rd of the actual word count of the article.

Some useful tips

1. Use normal English in summaries, just the way you write essays, articles, etc. Never have incomplete sentences like those in Telegrams, notes, etc.

2. Avoid long sentences, make short but complete sentences.

3. The entire paragraph should gel well when read. It shouldn’t appear disjointed.

4. Avoid lifting-off exact sentences from the article as it’ll make your summary longer. Rather, rephrase the same sentence in your own words.

5. Do not write summaries directly from the article. Make it only from the notes you made. You’ve already worked hard to strip useful content from the article in note making. This will save your precious time while summarizing.

6. Never jump the word-limit; always stick to a word-limit of 80-100 words for an article of around 450 words.


The following is the summary created from the example we published with Note making article. You can read the article along with its notes here:

The temple of Somnath, built in 1268 A.D. is situated in a small village called Somnathpur. It was commissioned by Soma Dandanayaka, Minister of Hoyasala King. It has three corridors housing three incarnations of Lord Krishna. The inner centre of temple has a Kalyana Mandapa. The temple has three Shikharas standing on a star shaped platform. The vertical panels are embedded with exquisite figures of deities and of nymphs depicting prosperity. The temple is an example of structural perfection with every inch of it covered by carvings of warriors, musicians and elephants.

(92 words)

  • Divyam Joshi

    What If we have crossed the word limit in summary..?
    Means what about the marks and its criteria..??

  • harsha

    very good

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