Rules Of Précis Writing

The rules of précis writing are penned down as follows;

  1. Carefully read the passage:    Before the writer starts making précis of the passage it should be read two or three times very carefully so to comprehend the passage completely
  2. Underline the main points:  After reading the passage carefully, all the important points and ideas should be underlined and the questions at the end of the passage can assist you identify the main points
  3. Chalk out a rough draft:   Put down all the main points in a sequence to get the first draft of your précis
  4. Order:   It is desirable to maintain the original order of ideas but it can be changed. However the chronological order should not be disturbed
  5. Chronological order: The writer should not change the chronological order of the original passage
  6. Length:     A good précis is almost one third of the original passage. Therefore the writer should exclude all the unnecessary details from the précis
  7. Eliminate the Outdated words: In a good précis there is no room for outdated words and phrases so they should be eliminated. It possesses current vocabulary in it
  8. Proper use of Grammar and Idioms: The writer should use grammar and idioms properly. A good précis is always in harmony with the grammar. The use of idioms makes précis more concise and useful
  9. Use Punctuation:       There should be proper and suitable use of punctuation marks where necessary. The use of punctuation marks makes the précis easy to understand and create effective feedback
  10. Use your own words:    The writer should use words of his own. He should not borrow words, phrases, and sentences from the original passage. It shows the through understanding of the writer
  11. Use Paragraph:  The writer should use paragraph if he feels necessary. He should not make loose sentences. Paragraphs should not appear to be separated in a good précis. Paragraph also shows the order of ideas
  12. Use Variety of language:  The writer should use easy words and simple sentences. He should avoid complex sentences which may create ambiguity and divergence between the thoughts of the original passage and the précis passage
  13. Maintain the Logical and natural sequence of points:        This means that sentence and ideas should follow one after the other in an unbroken chain. The main theme should run through the sentences like a thread through the beads of a necklace
  14. No Personal opinion: A good précis does not possess personal views of the précis maker. It only possesses the ideas of the writer of the original passage
  15. Use the third person pronoun: The writer should use the third case of personal pronoun in stead of using the first or the second cases of personal pronouns
  16. Use the indirect speech           A good précis is an embodiment of indirect speech. Direct speech is always avoided that is why it is not found in a good piece of précis.
  17. Final draft:      In the end there should be re-reading and re-checking of the précis to ensure that the sequence of facts and figures or thoughts and ideas is the same as it is in the original passage. .

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