Abstracting – Definition & Meaning

Abstracting is a term that is commonly used in various fields, including science, art, and literature. It is a process of extracting the essential features or meaning of a particular concept, idea, or object. Abstracting is an important skill that helps individuals to understand complex information and communicate it more effectively. In this article, we will explore the definition, origin, meaning, associations, synonyms, antonyms, and examples of abstracting.


Abstracting can be defined as the process of summarizing or extracting the essential features or meaning of a particular concept, idea, or object. It is a cognitive process that involves identifying the most important information and ignoring the irrelevant details. Abstracting is often used in scientific research, where researchers need to summarize the key findings of their studies.


The word “abstract” comes from the Latin word “abstrahere,” which means to draw away or remove. The term “abstracting” was first used in the 17th century to describe the process of extracting the essence of a concept or idea.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, abstracting is defined as “the process of extracting or summarizing the essential meaning or features of something.” Merriam-Webster defines abstracting as “the act of summarizing or reducing something to its essential or salient features.”


Abstracting is often associated with creativity, innovation, and critical thinking. It is a skill that is highly valued in many fields, including science, art, and literature. Abstracting allows individuals to see the big picture and identify patterns and connections that may not be immediately apparent.


Some synonyms of abstracting include summarizing, simplifying, reducing, extracting, and distilling.


Some antonyms of abstracting include elaborating, expanding, complicating, and detailing.

The same root words

Some words that share the same root as abstracting include abstraction, abstract, and abstruse.

Example Sentences

  1. The scientist spent months abstracting the key findings of her research.
  2. The artist’s work was highly abstract, with bold colors and geometric shapes.
  3. The writer’s style was characterized by its abstract language and complex imagery.
  4. The teacher encouraged her students to practice abstracting information from their textbooks.
  5. The mathematician used abstracting to simplify complex equations and make them more understandable.
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