Every year, waec sets summary questions for its candidates.

But there is a problem.

Most candidates don’t know how to answer the summary questions.

That’s why I created this article that contains the basic tips to answer summary questions correctly in waec exam.


Summary can be defined as a brief account giving the major pont in a paragraph or passage.

It seeks to test the candidate ability to extract and pick relevant information from a longer passage and present that information in clear, concise language.

This could only be done by understanding the passage under study.

In most cases, the questions focus on different sections of the passage.

For a candidate to write a good summary that would earn him good mark, the following points should be considered:

1. Avoid Grammatical Expression: When
writing a summary, it is important to ignore all utterances that are ungrammatical. The candidate should also avoid the use of vernacular.

2. Inclusion of Irrelevant Material Should be Avoided: When writing a summary, the candidate should try as much as possible to avoid inclusion of unnecessary information even if he/she knows more than the prescribed passage.

The use of illustrations, repetition and wordy comparison should also be avoided as this may lead to poor expression.

3. Answer should be in sentence and not phrases: A phrase can be defined as a group of words that has no finite verb.

This implies, that a phrase is an incomplete sentence and it makes no meaning.

When writing summary, answers should be giving in sentences so as to have reasonable meaning to the reader or the examiners. The use of phrases should be avoided.

4. Preamble should not be included: A preamble is an opening statement that must explain in details the aim of something that follows.

Illustrations or examples and repetition should not be included. The use of adjectives and poor expressions should also be avoided.

5. Avoid Giving Two Points In One Sentence: When answering summary question, it should be noted that two points can not lump in one sentence.

It should also be observed that, the inclusion of a coordinating conjunction may lead to a compound sentence and this should be avoided.

6. Do not lift your answers from verbatim: Do not lift a whole sentence from the passage. If you must do, be sensible about it.

As much as possible, try to use your own words in presenting your answers.

7. Do not write more than the required number: It would amount to ignorance if you ignore instructions.

It should be noted, that your answer should be in line with the question asked in the passage.

8. Avoid saying too many words: One reason for summary is the art of reducing several words into single words or short sentence.

To summarize simply means to reduce.

When writing a summary, the candidate should go straight to the point and avoid the use of too many words.

By using too many words, it makes the candidate to loose focus of what is required of the passage.


1 comment

  1. You are really wonderful in article writing. I really want to know-how waec tackled examination malpractice, this is what I really want to know about before sitting for waec exam. I have search through so many sites but I cloud not find what I am really looking for.

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