Answered By: Kate Holvoet
Last Updated: Jan 14, 2015     Views: 39

To paraphrase is an action where you restate in your own words a sentence, paragraph, or block of text from someone else's work.  Paraphrasing is a method to avoid plagiarism; it allows you to talk about someone's ideas and work and to not simply quote them.  Quotes are important, but if you try to take too much of the exact words from another author's work, even if you put the words in quotes and cite them, you are committing plagiarism.  Even though you have used your own words, you still need to cite the original source of the information that you paraphrased. 

There are several methods to help you parishes effectively.  They are:

  1. Using different words in your paraphrase that mean the same thing as the original - using synonyms.
    Example sentence: She wore a crimson lipstick.
    Paraphrase sentence: Her lips were dark red.
  2. Changing the order of the words in the sentence.
    Example sentence: Another problem with space flight is that the weightlessness of space is stressful for human bodies.
    Paraphrase sentence: In addition, people's bodies find low gravity environments difficult, which is a problem for space exploration.
  3. Using different grammar.
    Example sentence: Cleaning with vinegar is a cost effective method for home care.
    Paraphrase sentence: A method for caring for your home that can be cost effective is if you clean with vinegar.

For more examples of how to paraphrase (and why you should do it) please refer to the article "How to Paraphrase Effectively." Higher Score, (2007): n. pag. Web. 14 Jan. 2015.

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