executive summary 4


The Scenario

You have been asked to prepare an executive summary for the governor on the topic you investigated in Part 1 and Part 2 of the Applied Final Project (topic noted in attached document). Your job is to highlight the importance of your chosen topic by stating why the issue warrants public attention. Be sure to identify the scope and scale of who is impacted by your topic and then support your summary with the research you have done. Finally, take a position on what you would like to see done at the public policy level to address any gaps or shortcomings that are raised by your topic.


What is an executive summary?

An executive summary is a 1-2 page document that succinctly highlights key points and uses these points to make a recommendation to one or more stakeholders. An executive summary is usually part of a more detailed report that allows policy makers at all levels to make informed decision without having to read an entire report.


A good executive summary contains a great deal of information in just one or two pages and is concisely and efficiently written so that the reader feels that he/she has a firm grasp of the key issues after having read the summary. The writer must be convincing and definitive in his/her recommendations.



  • One to two single-spaced pages. Page length does not include the reference list.
  • The document should have one (1) inch margins on all sides as well as page numbers.
  • Although executive summaries do not usually include citations (because they are contained in the larger report), for this assignment you are expected to include in-text citations and a reference list at the end of your report. In-text citations and references should follow APA format.
  • Writing should be clear, concise, and professional. Avoid jargon and slang.

Grading of the Executive Summary


The executive summary will be scored according to the following rubric:




Points Earned

Statement of the problem

Statement of the problem

2 points: Clear and concise statement of the problem (What is the problem and why should we care?)

1 point: Problem stated, but not clearly or concisely

0 points: No statement of the problem


Scope and Scale of the problem

2: Clearly identifies the scope and scale of the problem (What are the data about who is affected? How many are affected?)

1: Scope and scale of the problem are implied, but not clearly stated

0: No indication of scope and scale of the problem


Supportive evidence

3: Effective incorporation of research (What do researchers have to say about this issue?)

2: Good incorporation of research but some details missing

1: Fair incorporation of research but many details missing

0: No incorporation of research


Policy need

2: Clear statement of the gap in policy, a problem with existing policy or a need for new policy

1: Gap in policy is implied but not clearly stated

0: Gap in policy is not mentioned



3: Clearly stated, appropriate recommendation that is consistent with the policy need

2: Appropriate recommendation for the policy need, but statement lacks clarity OR

Statement is clear, but recommendation is not consistent with the policy need

1: Recommendation is not consistent with policy need and or the recommendation is not well stated

0: No recommendation made


2: Clear rationale for making the recommendation

1: Rationale is present, but not clear

0: No rationale for recommendation



1: Adheres to format guidelines (length, margins, pagination)

0: Does not adhere to format guidelines



1: Formal, professional, written for the correct audience

0: Overly informal, unprofessional, written for incorrect audience



3: Well-written with few or no errors

2: Adequately written with a few errors that do not impact readability

1: Poorly written with several to many errors that impact readability

0: Response is incomprehensible


Citations and References

1: Correct use of APA citation style for in-text citations and references

0: Incorrect use of APA citation style







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