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A Quick Guide on How To Summarize an Article on Mac

Summaries are very common in academic writing, whereby students are expected to digest an excerpt’s contents and rewrite them in their own words. You might also find a summary useful when explaining a text and demonstrating that you understand the central theme and key points.

However, summarizing a text is easier said than done, especially when dealing with lengthy paragraphs. Technology has given rise to tools that can do the job within minutes. This article will discuss the various ways to summarize an article on Mac.

mac summarize text

How To Summarize an Article on Mac

Perhaps you are new to using Mac devices or haven’t gotten the time to acquaint yourself with them. We are pleased to tell you that Mac has an in-built feature that generates summaries of any text you want to shorten. This feature saves you time by eliminating the need to obtain a third-party app or software to do the job.

The Summarize feature on Apple’s MacOS has been around for a very long time. However, the summarize setting is off by default. To use it, you will first need to activate it. This feature works with almost all types of digital documents and can shrink lengthy text into shorter paragraphs without veering away from the main theme.

Here is a short guide on how to turn the feature on your Mac device.

Step 1 Go to "System Preferences" and select "Keyboard."

mac system preferences

Step 2 Navigate to the "Shortcuts" tab and look for the menu on the left side. Select "Services."

mac services icon

Step 3 On your right, you will see a list. Click on "Text."

Step 4 Look for a checkbox next to "Summarize" and click on it. Alternatively, you can use the "Option-Command-S" keyboard shortcut to activate the feature.

Now that you know how to activate the feature, let’s discuss how to summarize an article on Mac.

Step 1 Open the text document you want to summarize. You can open it within Pages, TextEdit, or AppleNotes.

Step 2 If you want to summarize everything, press the keyboard shortcut "Command-A" to highlight the entire text. Alternatively, you can click and drag with your mouse to highlight the specific areas within the text you wish to highlight.

Step 3 Press the keyboard shortcut you assigned to the Summarize feature. Alternatively, you can select the app name in the menu bar, click "Services," and select "Summarize."

textedit summarrize

Step 4 Wait for a window to appear with the shortened text. The slider at the bottom of the window will help you control the size of the summarized text. Click on it with your mouse and slide it to the right to make the text larger and vice versa to make it smaller.

Step 5 The "Sentences" and "Paragraphs" options at the bottom left of the window allow you to choose how to display the summarized text.

Alternative Way: How To Summarize PDF on Mac

Unfortunately, the Summarize feature on Mac doesn’t work on PDFs. Suppose you wanted to summarize the text within a PDF. You would have to highlight the text within the PDF, copy it, and paste it into a blank document. What if we told you there was a simpler way to summarize your PDF on Mac? An excellent example of a tool you can use is the HiPDF online tool.

The "Chat with PDF" tool is very nifty and uses artificial technology to automate document comprehension and summarize your text quickly. Once you upload your document to the platform, the AI will extract essential information from the text, allowing you to find what you need quickly and efficiently.

You might be apprehensive about the security of your documents once you upload them to this public online platform. HiPDF keeps your files secure by deleting them within 60 minutes of summarizing and processing. Use this simple guide below to help you learn how to summarize text on mac using HiPDF online tool.

Step 1 Visit HiPDF Chat with PDF on your browser and upload the PDF you want to summarize to the platform. Click on "Choose File" to upload.

hipdf summarize pdf online on mac

Step 2 Wait for the platform to analyze your document and extract key sentences relevant to the main theme.

hipdf summarize pdf online on mac

Step 3 Use the Chat with PDF tool by asking it relevant questions. You can copy and paste the answers to a separate document.

How To Summarize PDF Offline Using PDFelement

Online tools are easy to use because you don’t need to download any software to your device. They are also pretty fast, and you will have your summarized document with you within minutes. Suppose you prefer to use an offline tool on your Windows OS device. The offline alternative to the HiPDF online tool is Wondershare PDFelement - PDF Editor, an excellent tool for writing a summary.

summarrize pdf on mac

This platform also comes with a powerful AI robot known as Lumi, which is powered by ChatGPT. All you need to do is upload the document you want to summarize, and the AI will handle the rest. Within a few minutes, the robot will have comprehended your document, picked out the main theme, and summarized it to your liking.

Here is a quick guide to help you summarize your PDF online using Wondershare PDFelement.

Step 1 Launch the Wondershare PDFelement platform on your Windows OS device and click on the "Lumi PDF AI robot" icon at the bottom right corner of the page.

lumi summarize button

Step 2 Wait for a pop-up menu to appear and select "Summarize."

Step 3 Navigate to the Response box to view the output. You can then copy and paste the highlighted text to a blank document, make additional changes, and save the document.

summarized text window

Tips and Tricks of Writing a Good Summary

As good as these AI robots and platforms are, the finished product might lack the much-needed human touch. Remember, you are writing for fellow human beings, not bots. Perhaps you have a school assignment that requires you to summarize a long text, or your boss has asked you to highlight the main points in a report they sent you. Even though you have technology at your disposal, it would still be a great idea to learn how to write a good summary on your own. Here are some tips and tricks we would like to share with you on summary writing.

Read the Text More Than Once

The first step to writing a summary is perusing the article in three stages. The first stage is scanning, where you seek to understand the text's main theme and overall shape. The second step is reading to know as you carefully highlight the main ideas. The last step is skimming the article to confirm that you get the gist and fully grasp the main points.

Divide It Into Sections

Once you have understood the text, it would be wise to break it into manageable sections. Some articles might follow an empirical structure and contain an introduction, body, and conclusion. Other articles might include sub-headings, each tackling a separate theme related to the main one. During this step, ensure you single out any paragraph discussing a different theme and group together sections focusing on a similar idea.

Highlight the Main Points

Remember, the main goal of a summary is to bring any information you consider essential to the reader’s attention. Therefore, it would help to exclude background information or supplementary detail that serves no real purpose. If you have trouble identifying the main points, we urge you to look for the topic sentences in each paragraph.

Draft a Summary

Once you are confident in your work so far, you are ready to write the summary. Ensure you do not plagiarize the author’s original work by writing in your own words. It would also help to ensure your words don’t distort the main theme of the text. It would not be wise to copy and paste even as little as one sentence from the original text.

Compare the Summary and the Original

The last step in summary writing is to confirm you have not strayed away from the main ideas in the original text. At this stage, it would also be wise to ascertain you haven’t committed plagiarism by using a reliable plagiarism checker.


Before we conclude this article, we would like to answer a couple of questions.

1. How To Summarize On Without Plagiarizing?

Ensure you read the article several times so you grasp the main ideas. You can then rewrite the points in your own words without repeating any sentences and phrases the author used in the original text.

2. How To Summarize an Article in the Easiest Way Possible?

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to summarize an article. You must follow all the essential steps of writing a summary, as discussed above. Start by reading and re-reading the article, divide it into smaller segments, identify the main points, and draft an outline based on your gathered facts.

3. How Long Is a Summary?

length of your summary will depend on the original text and the purpose you want it to serve. A general rule of thumb is that your summary should be shorter than the original text.


It is important to note that summary writing doesn’t entail being critical of the original text. You should only aim to represent what the author intended to say in your own words. Summaries come in handy when you need to recall what you have been reading or during a literature review to show you have understood another author’s work. We hope this article has introduced you to various tools to help you summarize lengthy text and taught you how to write an impeccable one yourself that will wow your readers.

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