Answered By: Jennifer Harris
Last Updated: Jul 13, 2017     Views: 160

Paraphrasing is taking the ideas and information from an original source and writing it in your own words. Because paraphrasing involves carefully thinking about the original source, it can help you understand the material better. Also, it reduces the number of direct quotations in your paper and maintains your voice throughout your writing, which gives your paper greater readability. 

Just as with direct quotations, a paraphrase must include a citation so that you can give credit to the original source.

Here are some tips to help you write your paraphrase:

  • Read through the passage you want to paraphrase several times, to fully understand its meaning.
  • Write down the main ideas and key words of the passage. Then, write down synonyms or alternate ways of conveying the same idea with different words.
  • Make note of any unique words or phrases in the original passage that would lose their meaning if you re-wrote them. You can incorporate them into your paraphrase as direct quotations, with quotation marks around them.
  • Change the sentence structure, word order and grammar used in the original source when you rewrite it in your own words. This gives your writing a different voice than the original.

For more tips and examples of successful paraphrasing, here are some additional web resources:

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