Research Presentations: Disseminating Knowledge for Practice

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The abstract should have a title and should include the purpose and the significance of the study to the target audience, the design and procedures used for data collection, a succinct summary of the most important findings, and a brief statement of conclusion (Table 1). Careful attention should be given when constructing a title. The title should be interesting, brief, representative of the focus of the study, and attract attention to the research. Most research titles include the type of study, the variables, and the population studied (Ryan, 1989).It is important to identify whether there is a limitation on the number of words to be contained in the abstract. If there is not a limitation, follow the rule, “Never more than one typewritten page.” The abstract that is sent with a query letter to an editor of a journal does not have a word limit, but the above rule generally applies. The limit for conferences can vary from 150 to 300 words, and will be indicated in the Call for Abstracts. Use of the word count feature in a word processing program will assist in the construction of an abstract that adheres to the word count stated in the Call for Abstracts (Plaut, 1982).Specific references to the literature are included in rare instances. The language used in writing the abstract should not be highly technical. It should be clear and concise and should communicate to the reader the motive of the study, why and how the study was conducted, and what knowledge was gained from the study. Many conferences print the abstracts in the conference syllabus. A clear, concise, well-organized abstract has a greater probability of being accepted for presentation and is more likely to be well attended at a conference than one that is highly technical or disorganized.

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