Abstract vs. Executive Summary

Difference Between Abstract and Executive Summary

Abstract and Executive summaries are two that are very different in meaning and in how they are used. Executive is the term that is used in many business summaries and abstract is used when one is writing a research paper. This is the major difference between these two words. An abstract is a written summary as it is to let the readers know exactly what they research is about. It is an outline of a seminar or conference, and it briefly explains exactly what the discussion will be. Abstracts are for orientation purposes, as it is really condensed.

The Executive summary is written in nonprofessional terms, which anyone should be able to understand. This report should have a conclusion at the very end. An abstract should not have an ending. This is the main difference between a abstract and a summary. The executive summary should summarize or outline more than one document. The abstract should not attempt to do this. The abstract should not offer than a recommendation, which is the executive summary’s job. However, the abstract can summarize one research paper per seminar.

The executive summary is to have short and concise paragraphs as compared to the abstract.  However, both the abstract and the executive should contain short paragraphs. This factor makes these papers the same and at the same time unique.


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