How To Write A Precis Essay

What is precis writing?

A precis is a summarized form of a lengthy passage or comprehension. Anyone can grasp the idea of original comprehension by reading this short precis as it is written concisely without excluding any important information. It conveys the essential point to the audience.

Difference between Precis and Abstract

A précis is similar to an abstract, but the main difference is that a précis will contain fewer words than an abstract. It is more concise and will contain less information than an abstract. An abstract is usually much longer than a précis because the author will go into detail to cover the information presented.

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Salient Features of a Great Precis

For a precis to be great it must possess certain features which include:

  • It is a summary of the main points of the passage written in minimal words.
  • Length is ⅓ rd of the original text.
  • Written in your own words without adding any of your assumptions and imagination.
  • It contains a suitable and appropriate title that conveys the core idea.
  • The tone and tenses used are the same as that of the passage.
  • The words used are simple and easy.
  • It does not have extra details other than that are mentioned in the original comprehension.
  • The best precis is one that has everything that is in the original passage, but not too much.

How To Write An Efficient Precis

Precis writing usually requires a lot of creativity and it needs to be very well planned. It should be precise and you must stick to the theme. To summarize the passage effectively, you should only mention the most important aspects of the article. Focus on the main information and keep away all the unnecessary details.

How to Start a Precis writing

When writing the precis, you should always be clear on what you are writing about. Read the passage carefully 1-2 times, and skim and scan all the important information. Write down basic points in a rough draft so you do not skip any necessary information while writing a precis.

Begin with basic ideas and write important points, keywords, and terms. Avoid using complex and complicated words. Don't forget to keep the same author's tone in your precis. There should be no change of subject and expression. While writing a precis, never use the question format statements.

Keep the precis coherent and its length should not be more than ⅓ rd of the passage.

Art of Writing a Rhetorical Precis

Rhetorical precis is an analytical, highly structured 4-sentence paragraph type of precis. It is used to examine and analyze the author’s arguments, author’s intention, argument’s format, and the readers.

It is always good to begin your composition by answering questions like who the target audience is and what the article is about. This is important as it makes sure that you don't write anything which the readers wouldn't understand. Remember to focus on the point of the article.

The rhetorical precis should be on-point and should end in four sentences. When it is completed, you should look for examples of a good rhetorical one.

It should have a clear purpose. This makes the readers interested in reading the rest of the article. If the purpose of the rhetorical one is clear, then it can easily pull the attention of the reader.

Also Read: How To Shorten An Essay

Cannot Write Precis - What to do?

Students are required to do lots of things at the same time in university and colleges: studies, homework, work, assignments, extracurriculars, and so on. It makes it difficult for them to deal with all of these things and they will have a hard time studying.

However, there are ways to make the process easier. There are many academic services available online to help you with your studies. These are designed to make your studies easier and to improve your grades.

For example, there are online writing services that offer essay writing services and many study services. You can use them to write essays, term papers, and coursework.

You will need to visit the website of the service provider and read the information about their services. Get registered online and avail of their essay writing services.


Precis writing is a great way to convey a big chunk of information precisely. It requires strong analytical and writing skills. You get to know what information is necessary to retain and what information is to skim.

Precis is to write a gist of the comprehension giving basic ideas and covering only important aspects.

To write correct and brief information with clarity and completeness defines a good precis. Precis writing is indeed an art and students should master it as it helps them in many competitive exams in their future.

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