28 April 2022

Top ten checks for editing your research summary

Blog banners. January 2022

Writing for a practitioner audience is different from communicating with your colleagues. Practitioners are a diverse audience, with varied backgrounds, educations and job roles, and communicating to them all is a challenge.

However despite differences, there is one major similarity that practitioners share – the need for reliable insight to inform decision-making.

There is less necessity for the abstract and theoretical debates, and more demand for the tangible recommendation of what theory means in practice.

The purpose of writing a summary is to translate academic knowledge into a sound recommendation that explicitly states what it means. This is why we put together ten quick questions to ensure you translate your research in the most valuable way for a practitioner audience.

Our 10 top tips

1. High-editorial standard

Is the summary well-written, free of errors, and easy to follow?

2. Written for your audience

Are the findings that you’ve presented of interest, value and usefulness to a professional audience?

3. Focus serves knowledge gaps

Does it capture the most innovative elements from your research?

Have you focused on new insights or perspectives?

4. Key points are clearly presented

The purpose of the summary is to save the professional time. They want to see the most important points with ease.

5. Recommendations are included

Have you provided meaningful advice, recommendations or outlined what the research means in practice?

If your research paper does not explicitly state what to do with the research, then we welcome your expert interpretations of what could be done.

6. Recommendations are implementable

Systems and policy may need to change, but this does not offer advice on what small step a practitioner should take first. The greatest value is when you include precise and practical direction for a practitioner to apply to their work.

7. Language is specific and accurate

Be careful with language to avoid unfounded assumptions, generalisations and claims.

8. Writing is concise

Does the summary focus on only whats important? And is unnecessary information (and words!) removed?

9. It is honest

Were the findings presented in a truthful way that does not shy from their limitations?

10. It is reliable

Are sources cited alongside stated facts? Does the content hold up to scrutiny?

Are you an academic who would like to share their research? Click here to make an account and get sharing today.