Alba English

Materials for Class

Write a Summary

You need this skill for:

What is good summary sentence?

Practice: Recognizing a good summary sentence


Here are four summaries of a book (“World Wonders”, level 2)

  1. In summary, this book described some world wonders.
  2. In summary, the author described some places from around the world - including Iguazu Falls in South America and the city Petra in Jordan - and said why he thinks they are “world wonders”.
  3. In summary, reading this book made me want to visit Brazil, because I want to see Iguazu Falls, it looks amazing!
  4. In summary, this book describes one person’s choice of eleven wonders - some of them are made by people, and others are natural - to help readers discover new places.

Task 2

RR summaries (TOEFL integrated style). These need

Below are two good summaries, two not so good. Discuss: Can you see why?

  1. In this TED talk, the speaker argued that we have to change the world into a safe and comfortable place for people with disabilities by changing schools, work, and transport (Bender, 2011, March). For example, Takahashi (2020, September 13) described two projects in train stations in Kansai - ticket gates that recognise wheelchairs, and a new smartphone app for helping blind people find their train.
  2. Writer said photo is iconic (Gabriner, n.d.). However, TED speaker said that photo effect is not only iconic but also trigger of people (Klein, 2020, February).
  3. In this talk, the speaker argued that workers telling each other how much money they make will increase fairness, and so companies should promote doing it (Burkus, 2016, January). In fact, an article in the New York Times described a research project that showed this action reduced discrimination problems in work (Herrera, 2018, August 31).
  4. An article in Pet Guide said that “facility dogs” are working animals that help people in the legal system and other institutional settings (Barrington, 2017, February 21). However, in a TED talk, Morita (2015, March) argued that there are very few facility dogs working in Japan, and this is for several reasons.