Skip to Main Content
hand on paper correcting grammar with circles

Paper Format

Executive Summary

A typical Executive Summary gives a complete overview of the entire report. It should state the subject matter of the report, and it should explain the methods used to gather data. In explaining the methods, indicate what kinds of primary and secondary research were used in the paper. An Executive Summary usually also includes a brief statement of the paper's findings and conclusions. It may also include recommendations based on the findings and limitations of the research.

The Executive Summary should be written in the present tense, except when discussing the methods used and findings, which should be in the past tense.


The Executive Summary should be placed

  • on a separate page and

  • immediately after the Table of Contents and before the body.


The title of your Executive summary should be centered and bold using a level 1 heading.


The format of the Executive Summary should

  • have double spaced lines and

  • be usually no longer than one page.

Remember to check with your instructor for any specific requirements for a particular assignment.