What role does an abstract play in undergraduates’ final year project structure?

To be guided properly while tracing a map, the map reader must trust the map keys, for an organization or business report, there should be an executive summary but for most research papers - a thesis, a review, final year project, there should be an abstract. The abstract of a typical undergraduate project topic, often positioned at the entry point of a research material is usually written at the end of the entire research process. A reader or the audience of your research can decide to or not to continue reading your presentation after taking a look at your project abstract.

This is the more reason you need to understand the role an abstract plays in your research structure, the two forms of an abstract and the acceptable structure for final year project abstract.

There are two forms of abstract                            

Informative abstract

Descriptive abstract

Informative abstract: This form of abstract in research simply tells the reader what is contained in the research material without actually detailing how the researcher went about gathering the information.

Descriptive abstract:  This form of abstract does not just inform you about the information contained in the book, it points out very quickly, every step taken to realize the research outcome. This form of abstract is often recommended for undergraduate research.

Here is a format for the structure of an abstract in descending order

It is not compulsory to structure your abstract following this order but it very necessary that these information below are available in your project abstract.

  • The research purpose ( the project topic or the statement of problem)

  • The research method used (observation, experiment, survey, content analysis, case study, etc.)

  • Research findings

  • Conclusion or recommendation

Role of an abstract in undergraduates’ final year projects

  • It gives first hand, a detailed and quick analysis of the entire research so that even when you do not wish to continue reading through, you have the major picture captured.

  • An abstract is an entry point after contact with the project topic.

  • It describes in quick succession, every step taken to bring the research to bear.


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