Susan Yackzan, PhD, APRN, MSN, AOCN®  
Congress Content Planning Team Member 

The call for abstract submissions for the ONS 45th Annual Congress begins on August 12. This is the time to share your expertise, innovations, ideas, and research with your fellow oncology nurses.  We hope you will answer the call! 

What is an abstract? 

An abstract is a concise summary of a project. The summary is written to convey important aspects of a project so your colleagues can understand why you did something, how you did it, and what you found out.  Your colleagues can learn about your project and relate it to their own oncology nursing work. ONS Congress abstracts can be submitted in seven categories: Clinical Practice, Research, Leadership/Management/Education, Industry-Supported, International, and Quality Improvement.  

New in 2020

Two changes will be introduced for the 45th Annual Congress regarding abstracts: 

  • In addition to submitting an abstract in one of seven categories, authors will also choose a subtopic.  The Congress Content Planning Team established subtopics based on ILNA categories, trends in practice, and information from previous Congress evaluations. Authors submitting abstracts in the Research category will also choose a subtopic, however Research subtopics were based on the 2019–2022 Oncology Nursing Research Priorities.   
  • Research abstract and scoring criteria have been revised and expanded to more fully describe the research process of a study. Check the abstract submission portal for more details.

How do you write an abstract? 

Start by looking up the abstract submission instructions.  All abstracts must be submitted electronically by September 19, 2020.  Abstracts must be written in a prescribed sequence and have a specific word limit.  In general, when you write an abstract, you will be asked to concisely describe important points such as: purpose, problem or question, design, methods, findings, and conclusions. 

What can you write about? 

Think about the issues you experience in your daily work and the ways in which you and your colleagues have created solutions. Nurses are researchers, innovators, and leaders; you know how to set priorities to efficiently move through a day while providing safe, high-quality care. You know how to work with people in other disciplines, and you know how to mobilize resources. You educate yourself, your colleagues, and your patients. You screen, detect, manage, and strategize. Best of all, you know how to keep care centered on your patients, prioritizing their needs and values.

Here are some additional things to keep in mind! 

  • Be sure to check grammar and spelling – ask someone you trust to read your abstract and check for errors.  Spell-check may not catch everything.
  • Do not go over the allotted word count.
  • Make sure you have something written for each part of the abstract (follow the sequence!) 

Are there any resources to help write an abstract? 

ONS has a mentor program for new abstract writers. Submit this form to be paired with an experienced abstract writer for guidance. You can also view the 2019 accepted poster and podium abstract submissions, or view the 2019 ePosters to get a better idea of what is expected. 

Share your Power, Passion, and Purpose by answering the call for Abstract Submissions! 

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