Precis Writing

Meaning and Qualities of a Good Precis

In the business world, Precis writing is considered a very important skill. It gives a good impression of your understanding and if done well lets you shine than other. That is why a good emphasis should be given to writing a precis. So let’s begin to learn all about it.

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What is Precis Writing?


Meaning and qualities of a good precis

Precis is a French word which is derived from the French word ‘precis’. It means summarizing while the process of writing it or summarizing it is called precis writing. Thus, any lengthy passage can be described in a few words without changing it’s main theme or idea while writing a precis.

It is the use of abstract and summary words that can be used in place of precis as both these words contain the same meaning. A summary is a well-presented form of the statements or notes containing headings and sub-headings which are pointed below them.

While abstract is in the paragraph form that should have the main theme of that passage or the article. So, in general, we derive that the precis should be brief, clear, and accurate.

The one important rule or aspect that one should always remember is that one should avoid using their own interpretation of the subject or the comments when it comes to precis writing. One should avoid refraining from the author’s voice and tone.

For writing style, you must be clear and effective and you should ramble while writing. It is important that you avoid the use of any unnecessary words or long sentences.

Ultimately, what matters is the coherence of the sentences that are presented in the passage and how you can relate them in a short format in precis. As the precis does not all the points, shifting of one point from another should be taken care of.

In the end, it is important that the precis you have written should be logical and make proper sense.

Browse more Topics under Precis Writing

 Learn the  Rules of precis writing

Qualities for Writing a Good Precis

A precis is the short form of a passage, but it should not be short on quality. And that is why it is important to understand what qualities must be there for writing a good precis. It must include the following points:


One should not ignore this quality instead give it utmost importance. Objectivity means how you are presenting your facts and views without it being biasing your feelings or personal opinions. In stricter terms, precis writing should be a summary of the passage or text given to you. It should not include your personal idea or opinions.


A precis is the crisp formation of the passage and it should be as crisp and clear as possible. Clarity is essentially getting your ideas loud and clear without writing it in depth. It should convey what the writer is trying to say. We can achieve clarity through the use of simple structure and simple language.


We have covered the importance of coherence above. It clearly means that ideas and views that you have presented should be logical and the interconnection of the ideas should be proper. You should well-knit all the ideas that you mention among themselves and you should not leave any gap in the ideas that you are presenting.


Although your precis is a short formation, it is equally important that you do not make any mistakes while writing it. There are many mistakes that you should avoid while writing a precis. Many such mistakes include mistakes in figures and dates, the spelling of words, punctuation mistakes, structure and grammar mistakes, and many more. These mistakes should be strictly avoided as the precis is very short and the reader wants it to be mistake-proof.


Conciseness means that the precis should contain all the information required while not mentioning it in depth. It should not be too long either too short and both of these should not have any impact while writing a precis. Avoid all the unnecessary details and write only the necessary details. Some points to achieve conciseness should include, eliminating wordy expressions, the omission of unnecessary details, avoiding the unnecessary repetition, etc.


A precis is a short form of the passage, but this does not mean that it should be incomplete. It should include as many things as possible and more importantly the facts. In fact, a good one should be able to produce all the facts while being short. A short precis does not mean avoiding important facts. Also, the important thing that you should remember is it should be a summary and not a short description of the passage.

Practice questions on Qualities of a Good Precis

Q. What is the origin of the word ‘precis’?

  1. American
  2. French
  3. Italian
  4. German

Answer. B. French

Q. For a good precis, it is important that one should have _____ it thoroughly.

  1. Understood
  2. Written
  3. Read
  4. Copy

Answer. C. Read

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