Summary Tab Examples

The summary sheet It is a material or computer document where the main data of a subject studied is stored.

The term summary sheet It comes from the days when small-size sheets of thick paper (one-third of an A4 sheet) were used to record data. The “tab” was this paper support, which was also used to organize data from books in a library, clients or patients.

Currently the cards in their original format are not usually used in the same way. If we take notes on paper, we do not usually use index cards but notepads or blocks of paper of various sizes.

The summary cards are used to study for exams or do research for monographs, theses, articles and theses.

How is a summary sheet made?

In a summary card, a certain source is analyzed: books, magazines, interviews, databases. All sources must be specified in the file, so that it can later be included in the text.

For example, in an oral exam you can say: I take the concept of the panopticon developed by Michel Foucault.

In a written text you can write: The philosopher Michel Foucault presents the panopticon as the utopia of a type of society.

In both examples, the author is paraphrased, that is, what an author said is transmitted in his own words.

On other occasions, it is necessary to make verbatim citations of the author and for this specific cards called “citation cards” or “textual card” can be used, or the verbatim citations can be included in the summary cards.

In all cases, the page and editing data of the work from which the abstract is made must be included, in order to be able to cite appropriately in the subsequent text.

The information that a summary sheet contains will always depend on the intended use but, in general, every summary sheet must have:

  • Qualification
  • Author
  • Main ideas
  • Bibliographic references
  • Notes

For the summary sheets to be easy to use, they must always follow the same format, with the same heading to easily find each tab. Making index cards is a way of organizing information, so it will only be effective if the cards are also strictly organized.

What is a summary sheet used for?

  • To organize books in a library. If the card is used in a library to summarize the content of a book to potential readers, a mention is made of the most important contents without defining or developing them. This type of card is also called a “bibliographic card”.
  • To study for an oral exam. It contains the information that can be presented in the exam, explained with appropriate words for the exam instance and at the same time within a logical sequence that facilitates its memorization.
  • To study for a written exam. It has the same format as the previous one, but paying special attention to the correct writing of complicated words and author names.
  • As part of a thesis or monograph research. It contains a summary of the contents of the book, developing only the concepts that will be used in the subsequent thesis.

Summary card examples

Author: Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Qualification: A Chronicle of a Death Foretold

Style: Fiction. Latin American Literature

Year of publication: 1981

It narrates the events that occurred near the wedding of Bayardo San Román (a rich man and new to the town) and Ángela Vicario. At the time of the events, women were supposed to remain virgins until marriage, but Angela was not a virgin. Bayardo discovers it and returns her to her parents’ house. Angela’s brothers (Pedro and Pablo) decide to assassinate the person who took her sister’s virginity, a young man named Santiago Nasar. The whole town finds out about their intentions but nobody stops them.

Main characters:

Angela Vicario: young without too many flashy attributes, until she is chosen as a girlfriend by a rich man.

Bayardo San Román: engineer recently arrived in town, of great wealth. Choose Angela to marry her.

Santiago Nasar: 21-year-old cheerful young man. Angela’s supposed lover.

Narrator: a neighbor of the town who narrates the events as he observed them or was told.

Poncio Vicario: Angela’s father. Goldsmith before going blind.

Pura Vicario: Angela’s mother.

Pedro Vicario: Angela’s brother. 24 years old, decides to kill Santiago.

Pablo Vicario: Angela’s brother, Pedro’s twin. Help his brother kill Santiago.


Gabriel García Márquez: 1927 – 2014. 1982 Nobel Prize in Literature

Latin American boom. Magical realism.

Author: Walter Benjamin

Qualification: “The work of art at the time of its technical reproducibility”

Published in: 1936

Topics: art, politics, Marxism, industrialization.

Key concepts:

Aura: unrepeatable experience before the work of art. This originality is destroyed by the technical reproduction of the works. Reproduction disassociates the work from its place in tradition.

Politicization of art: from the loss of the aura, the very function of art changes. Its foundation ceases to be ritual to become political.

Aestheticism of political life: Fascism’s response to the loss of aura: the cult of the caudillo begins.

Notes: Benjamin belongs to the Frankfurt school: neo-Marxist current of thought.

This essay is published when Hitler is already German Chancellor.

Author: Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche. German philosophy.

Qualification: The birth of tragedy

Greek tragedy is halfway between dramatic art and ritual.

The Apollonian (of the god Apollo) and the Dionysian (of the god Dionysus) are artistic forces that spring from the same nature.

The Apollonian: World of Dream Images. Perfection independent of the intellectual value of the individual. The world as an orderly and luminous totality. It expresses harmony and clarity, an orderly and balanced position that opposes primary and instinctive forces. Rationality.

The Dionysian: drunken reality. Annihilation of the individual and dissolution into a mystical unity. Greek conception of the world before the appearance of philosophy. Represents the spirit of the earth. Aesthetic symbol of strength, music and intoxication.

Appointment: “Only as an aesthetic phenomenon is existence in the world justified.”

Nietzsche, F. (1990) The birth of tragedy, trans. A. Sánchez Pascual, Madrid: Alianza, p. 42.

Notes: It is the first book of Nietzsche.

Influences: Shopenhauer and Richard Wagner.