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Paraphrasing

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This resource provides guidelines for paraphrasing and summarizing the sources you have researched.

Whether you are writing for the workplace or for academic purposes, you will need to research and incorporate the writing of others into your own texts. Two unavoidable steps in that process are paraphrasing (changing the language into your own) and summarizing (getting rid of smaller details and leaving only the primary points). These steps are necessary for three reasons.

First, if you used the original writer’s language without any changes, it limits your own learning; by paraphrasing and summarizing, you make a piece of information your own, and you understand it better.

Second, the original writers did not write for the audiences you are targeting; there are inevitably contents and language choices that will not necessarily work for your audience. Third, what authors write is considered to be their property, just like a coat or a car; by copying it (without giving credit), you can be accused of plagiarism.

Summarizing and paraphrasing are frequently used together, but not always. The following will give you some basic information on paraphrasing and summarizing, and then you will have the chance to reflect on appropriate paraphrasing and summarizing yourself.

As explained above, paraphrasing is making different word choices and re-arranging words in such a way that maintains the same meaning, but sounds different enough that readers will not be reminded of the original writer’s words. Here is an example, followed by inadequate and adequate paraphrases:

Example: The current constitutional debate over heavy metal rock and gangsta rap music is not just about the explicit language but also advocacy, an act of incitement to violence.

Inadequate paraphrase: Today’s constitutional debate about gangsta rap and heavy metal rock is not just about obscene language but also advocacy and incitement of acts of violence.

Adequate paraphrase: Lyrics in some rap and heavy metal songs that appear to promote violence, along with concerns about obscenity, have generated a constitutional debate over popular music.

In the inadequate paraphrase, the meaning of the original is altered somewhat: it claims that the debate is about advocacy AND violence, but it is supposed to be about advocacy FOR violence. Also, too few of the words have been changed, and the order of the sentence remains essentially the same. In the second attempt at paraphrasing, enough changes have been made so that readers would not feel that they are reading somebody else’s words.

When you are paraphrasing, there are a number of strategies you can apply:

  • Locate the individual statements or major idea units in the original.
  • Change the sentence structure and the order of major ideas, while maintaining the logical connections among them. For example, if the author you are paraphrasing presents a generalization and then backs it up with an example, try using the example as a lead-in to the generalization. For an individual sentence, try to relocate a phrase from the beginning of the sentence to a position near the end, or vice versa.
  • Substitute words in the original with synonyms, making sure the language in your paraphrase is appropriate for your audience.
  • Combine or divide sentences as necessary.
  • Use direct quotations from the original sporadically, limiting yourself to quotations of the most striking or interesting language. Do not quote very plainly stated passages.
  • Compare the paraphrase to the original to ensure that the rewording is sufficient and the meaning has been preserved.
  • Weave the paraphrase into your essay.
  • Document the paraphrase—give formal credit to the original writer(s).*

* Kennedy, M.L. & Smith, H.M. (2000). Reading and Writing in the Academic Community . New York, NY: Prentice Hall College Division.

owl paraphrasing

PARAPHRASING TOOL BY PAPERSOWL

Rephrase easily to avoid plagiarism. Free and Easy to use!

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Hire a professional editor to paraphrase your essay.

How to use paraphrasing tool:

  • Paste the text you need to be reworded in the box and click the “paraphrase” button.
  • You will see a series of highlighted words in your text. Click on each to view a list of prospective synonyms with which to replace said words.
  • Replace the original word with the synonym of your choice by clicking on it.
  • Once you have changed all the words from the original text you deem necessary, click “finish.”
  • If you are satisfied with the results, copy and paste the text to your desired location.
  • If you think more changes are necessary at this point, click “retry” to start again, or the “paraphrase another text” button to repeat the process on a new text you need reworded.

(Votes: 0 )

How to avoid plagiarism?

Proper citation style.

Avoid plagiarism by always listing the source and formatting it correctly when you are note-taking. Take care of the proper formatting and citation style when using content from outside sources.

Write on your own

Avoid borrowing and overusing large pieces of the content from outside sources, especially Wikipedia. Write your own thoughts and use sources only to support your opinion (remember to cite it though!).

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Free Top Paraphrasing Tool Trusted by Students

Being a student isn't always easy, especially when there're many essays waiting to be written. Every paper requires research, a particular number of words, top-quality text that's understandable and enjoyable to read, and more. Following all those requirements isn't always simple. Plus, the text should be original. Is using an online rephraser a good idea? Sometimes, you lack inspiration or time to create the paper you want. In such situations, an essay rephraser can do miracles. Here, you'll learn about the steps to use it and more. Let's dive in.

How Does Essay Re phraser Work?

Using a parahrasing tool is effortless. Its purpose is to complete essay rephrasing and create content that'll be 100 % authentic. Again, being a student can be hard some days. When such days arrive, it's good to be ready and complete it in time. Getting an online paraphrasing tool's help is useful. Plus, it will make your life easier.

The process of getting things done requires a few minutes only. You enter the text in the desired field and then click on a Paraphrase button. Several seconds later, another area will show rephrased text. You can use a free plagiarism checker by Papersowl to check for originality and ensure the essays are authentic. When you complete all the steps, your paper will be ready!

These tools are pretty straightforward so that first-time users can handle it all simply without any fuss.

What Makes Our Free Paraphrasing Tool the Best?

There're many rephrasing tools on the market these days, but still, you should choose one carefully. After all, your goal is the best experience. You'll achieve it by selecting the top option.

Our rephrase tool is designed for those interested in text creation of any kind. Use the online paraphrase tool for:

  • Research papers
  • Other types of text

With it, you can paraphrase anything, from sentences to paragraphs, simply and effortlessly. By using the tool, you'll get original content and more. When using it regularly, you'll improve your writing skills as well.

A student can also struggle with title creation. To avoid such issues, use a free title page generator that'll help you create unique and catchy titles for your papers and articles. The tool will design the title in any style you need, from APA and MLA to Chicago, AMA, or Harvard.

A reword tool doesn't cost a thing and can help you in many ways. Having a rich vocabulary can become much easier with this simple-to-use article rewriter. You'll save many hours and a lot of energy. Yet, all your papers will be excellent. You can stop asking - can someone rephrase my essay. Instead, you'll do it yourself. One thing is guaranteed - the results will astonish you.

Papersowl's Paraphrasing Tool: When to Use?

Creating original and effective essays requires a lot of research, work, and patience. These tasks don't always go smoothly. When chasing better grades, you want everything to be fantastic, right?

You don't always feel inspired, motivated, or have enough hours or days on your hands to complete your papers, ensuring they're excellent and completely authentic. What to do?

A paraphrasing tool for essays is an option worth considering. It's ideal for many reasons. It'll help you complete the texts without changing their meaning. Plus, the content is 100 % authentic. Forget about plagiarism issues. Every single sentence will be authentic. You'll save hours, if not days. In addition, count on more energy to complete other tasks.

If you don't feel comfortable using the tool to paraphrase the original text, there's another option. That's using a custom writing essay service , which is affordable and gives impressive results. Qualified and experienced writers create content at low prices no one can beat. Plus, the authors are creative and know to structure the texts and create unique content.

The vital thing is there're many options to consider. Eventually, you'll select what's working for you. You can pick a tool. Or, get a rewriter. Both online solutions will be helpful, that's for sure.

How Does This Professional Paraphrasing Tool Work?

There's nothing complicated about it. It all goes smoothly and effortlessly. The only requirement is to follow several steps to rephrase essays easily.

  • Open the page with a rephraser
  • Enter the content you want to reword
  • Select Paraphrase by clicking on it
  • The content will feature many highlighted words
  • By clicking on each, you'll see the synonyms
  • Simply change the word you wish by clicking on offered synonym of your choice

Once the changes have been made, end the task by clicking on Finish and copying the content to any desired location.

That's it! The content is rephrased! There's nothing simpler than this.

If you want additional changes, you can start again by clicking on Retry. You can continue rewording other texts as well. You can complete tasks the way it suits you, by alternating sentences or paragraphs, at the pace that works for you.

When working using the paraphrase generator, there's no need to spend hours searching for synonyms. All are presented right there. Thus, you won't waste a minute. Plus, more ideas and words will flow.

Difference Between Rephrasing & Plagiarism

Understanding the difference between these two terms isn't complicated. As you know, when working on articles or another type of content for school or college, it's vital to deliver 100 % authentic textual content that is plagiarism-free. It means that copying isn't an option. That's where the reword option comes. When you reword the content, you'll ensure it is plagiarism-free. The PapersOwl designed a word changer to allow everyone to complete their tasks and deliver originality.

Getting around the sentence rephraser is straightforward. Even first-time users can complete the tasks in minutes. Avoiding copying issues has never been easier. Everything can be managed through the tool that suggests suitable synonyms, and all texts will be authentic and plagiarism-free.

Wrapping It Up

If you struggle with creating articles or essays for school or college and need help, use a PapersOwl rephraser. It's the top option that doesn't require some special skills to be used. The content will look and sound completely different in just a few clicks. Plus, it'll be 100 % authentic. Yet, the meaning of the content will remain the same. Get everything done much faster and easier. Let's not forget to mention the service won't cost you a cent. You can basically paraphrase an essay in minutes. You'll have lots of fun doing this. Simultaneously, you'll improve your vocabulary and textual content creation skills.

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How Does Paraphrasing Tool Work?

  • Copy the desired text or manually enter the text you need to paraphrase. Click on the button, and the artificial intelligence algorithm will define the series of words in the text for you. The result will appear on your screen instantly.
  • Click on the words highlighted in blue to change them to synonyms. Two lines will appear under the text window. The first one is the source word, and the second one is the suggested alternatives. Choose the synonyms that seem most relevant to you and click on them. This place will automatically change in the text. Modify the source text until you are satisfied with the result. Once you have completed editing the text, hit the finish button.
  • After the editing stage, the window's initial text will be changed. If you like the final version, copy the ready text into your document. If you want to edit the text or start the rewriting process again, click on the retry button. You can check it for plagiarism at the end for free. To start rewording a new text, click on the paraphrase button.
  • The last stage is optional. You can get assistance from experts if you have difficulties with the rewrite or don't like your final version. To do this, click on the "I need expert help" button. You can place your order there by specifying the deadline and the number of pages and providing detailed instructions.
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Advantages Of Paraphrasing Tool By PapersOwl

Why choose us? Our excellent paraphrasing tool will help you optimize both your input research data and your considerations to obtain an authentic and smartly compiled paper. Let’s see what miracles our essay rephraser can do with your essay:

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We don't want to weigh you down forcing you to explore complex educational tools. Our experts elaborated on a simple yet efficient tool. No special knowledge is needed for fast and quality paraphrasing of your papers

Being a student is not always easy, and when you are short of time you can resort to a rephrasing instrument. In a couple of minutes, you will have a powerful and unique paper you can be proud of.

Combining the requirements provided for a paper and creative component uniquely isn’t always easy. That’s what our paraphrasing tool can do to your best advantage delivering a quality plagiarism-free essay.

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owl paraphrasing

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Touro University Writing Center

Paraphrase: Write It in Your Own Words

Learn to borrow from a source without plagiarizing .

A Paraphrase is...

  • your own rendition of essential information and ideas expressed by someone else, presented in a new form.
  • one legitimate way (when accompanied by accurate documentation) to borrow from a source.
  • a more detailed restatement than a summary, which focuses concisely on a single main idea.

Paraphrasing is a valuable skill because...

  • it is better than quoting information from an undistinguished passage.
  • it helps you control the temptation to quote too much.
  • the mental process required for successful paraphrasing helps you to grasp the full meaning of the original.

Six Steps to Effective Paraphrasing

  • Reread the original passage until you understand its full meaning.
  • Set the original aside, and write your paraphrase on a note card.
  • Jot down a few words below your paraphrase to remind you later how you envision using this material. At the top of the note card, write a key word or phrase to indicate the subject of your paraphrase.
  • Check your rendition with the original to make sure that your version accurately expresses all the essential information in a new form.
  • Use quotation marks to identify any unique term or phraseology you have borrowed exactly from the source.
  • Record the source (including the page) on your note card so that you can credit it easily if you decide to incorporate the material into your paper.

Some examples to compare:

The original passage:.

Students frequently overuse direct quotation in taking notes, and as a result they overuse quotations in the final [research] paper. Probably only about 10% of your final manuscript should appear as directly quoted matter. Therefore, you should strive to limit the amount of exact transcribing of source materials while taking notes.

A legitimate paraphrase:

In research papers students often quote excessively, failing to keep quoted material down to a desirable level. Since the problem usually originates during note taking, it is essential to minimize the material recorded verbatim.

An acceptable summary:

Students should take just a few notes in direct quotation from sources to help minimize the amount of quoted material in a research paper.

A plagiarized version:

Students often use too many direct quotations when they take notes, resulting in too many of them in the final research paper. In fact, probably only about 10% of the final copy should consist of directly quoted material. So it is important to limit the amount of source material copied while taking notes.

Paraphrasing Exercise

Directions: On a separate piece of paper, write a paraphrase of each of the following passages. Try not to look back at the original passage.

  • "The Antarctic is the vast source of cold on our planet, just as the sun is the source of our heat, and it exerts tremendous control on our climate," [Jacques] Cousteau told the camera. "The cold ocean water around Antarctica flows north to mix with warmer water from the tropics, and its upwellings help to cool both the surface water and our atmosphere. Yet the fragility of this regulating system is now threatened by human activity."
  • The twenties were the years when drinking was against the law, and the law was a bad joke because everyone knew of a local bar where liquor could be had. They were the years when organized crime ruled the cities, and the police seemed powerless to do anything against it. Classical music was forgotten while jazz spread throughout the land, and men like Bix Beiderbecke, Louis Armstrong, and Count Basie became the heroes of the young. The flapper was born in the twenties, and with her bobbed hair and short skirts, she symbolized, perhaps more than anyone or anything else, America's break with the past.
  • Of the more than 1000 bicycling deaths each year, three-fourths are caused by head injuries. Half of those killed are school-age children. One study concluded that wearing a bike helmet can reduce the risk of head injury by 85 percent. In an accident, a bike helmet absorbs the shock and cushions the head.
  • Matisse is the best painter ever at putting the viewer at the scene. He's the most realistic of all modern artists, if you admit the feel of the breeze as necessary to a landscape and the smell of oranges as essential to a still life. "The Casbah Gate" depicts the well-known gateway Bab el Aassa, which pierces the southern wall of the city near the sultan's palace. With scrubby coats of ivory, aqua, blue, and rose delicately fenced by the liveliest gray outline in art history, Matisse gets the essence of a Tangier afternoon, including the subtle presence of the bowaab, the sentry who sits and surveys those who pass through the gate.
  • While the Sears Tower is arguably the greatest achievement in skyscraper engineering so far, it's unlikely that architects and engineers have abandoned the quest for the world's tallest building. The question is: Just how high can a building go? Structural engineer William LeMessurier has designed a skyscraper nearly one-half mile high, twice as tall as the Sears Tower. And architect Robert Sobel claims that existing technology could produce a 500-story building.

Paraphrasing Exercise: Possible Answers

Here are sample answers for the paraphrasing exercise:

  • According to Jacques Cousteau, the activity of people in Antarctica is jeopardizing a delicate natural mechanism that controls the earth's climate. He fears that human activity could interfere with the balance between the sun, the source of the earth's heat, and the important source of cold from Antarctic waters that flow north and cool the oceans and atmosphere.
  • During the twenties lawlessness and social nonconformity prevailed. In cities organized crime flourished without police interference, and in spite of nationwide prohibition of liquor sales, anyone who wished to buy a drink knew where to get one. Musicians like Louis Armstrong become favorites, particularly among young people, as many turned away from highly respectable classical music to jazz. One of the best examples of the anti-traditional trend was the proliferation of young "flappers," women who rebelled against custom by cutting off their hair and shortening their skirts.
  • The use of a helmet is the key to reducing bicycling fatalities, which are due to head injuries 75% of the time. By cushioning the head upon impact, a helmet can reduce accidental injury by as much as 85%, saving the lives of hundreds of victims annually, half of whom are school children.
  • Matisse paintings are remarkable in giving the viewer the distinct sensory impressions of one experiencing the scene first hand. For instance, "The Casbah Gate" takes one to the walled city of Tangier and the Bab el Aassa gateway near the Sultan's palace, where one can imagine standing on an afternoon, absorbing the splash of colors and the fine outlines. Even the sentry, the bowaab vaguely eyeing those who come and go through the gate, blends into the scene as though real..
  • How much higher skyscrapers of the future will rise than the present world marvel, the Sears Tower, is unknown. However, the design of one twice as tall is already on the boards, and an architect, Robert Sobel, thinks we currently have sufficient know-how to build a skyscraper with over 500 stories.

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Quoting and paraphrasing

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One of the primary features of academic writing is using books, journal articles, websites, and other outside sources (“the literature”) to support your ideas. This requires you to read widely in order to seek out the different sides of a debate within a particular field of inquiry.

Your writing should demonstrate how and where you have drawn on the literature in support of your point. You must also ensure that your writing connects with the literature. The best assignments move fluidly between the outside evidence and your own interpretations, explanations, and evaluations of it. The sources are integrated within the assignment.

There are three main methods for incorporating the ideas and research of other authors into your document:

  • Quoting: copying the source information word for word
  • Paraphrasing: putting the source information into other words and phrases
  • Summarising: creating a shortened version of the source information

Whenever you use an outside source – whether you have quoted it directly, paraphrased it, or summarised it – you must always do two things:

  • connect it with the writing around it
  • credit the original author

Crediting the original author is done by referencing: see introduction to referencing for more. It is important for a number of reasons .

Connecting it with your own writing is the focus of this section.

In this section

  • Paraphrasing and summarising

Related sections

  • Introduction to referencing
  • Other referencing styles

Page authorised by Director - Centre for Learner Success Last updated on 25 October, 2012

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owl paraphrasing

Quoting & Paraphrasing

On this page, quoting sources.

Quotes are helpful and can advance an essay, but make sure every quote you use has a job to do in your paper. Too many quotes can overpower your own writing or lead to "patchwriting", a type of plagiarism .

Quotes are used when:

A. The language is unusually vivid, bold, or inventive.

B. The quote represents and emphasizes the view of an important expert.

C. The original passage cannot be paraphrased without loss of meaning.

Incorporating Quotes

To integrate a quote smoothly into a paper, introduce the quote by giving the name and credentials of the person or organization you're quoting.

Example: Barbara S. Cain, clinical supervisor at the Psychological Clinic at the University of Michigan, points out that…

Attributive Tags

Attributive tags (also called "signal phrases" or "author tags") tell us that the writer is about to quote or paraphrase someone else. In the above example, "points out that" is an attributive tag. A few more are:

According to (author), ...

Make sure you understand what each tag means before using it, and use proper formatting. Notice how the following quote is cited differently depending on whether the author is using MLA, APA, or a form of Chicago:

MLA : To make his point, Fisher writes that, “such slavish dependency on cell phones is accompanied by the demise of common social courtesies” (660).

APA : Fisher believes that, “such slavish dependency on cell phones is accompanied by the demise of common social courtesies” (2011, p. 660).

Chicago (author-date style) : Fisher (2011) believes that, “such slavish dependency on cell phones is accompanied by the demise of common social courtesies” (660).

Steps for using a Quote (Infographic):

This presentation can be adapted to any style, but uses MLA here. Presentation mode available here .

Paraquoting (video)

Paraphrasing.

While a quote is word-for-word text taken from another source, a paraphrase takes an idea from a source but changes the wording and structure. In other words, the ideas came from an outside source, but the words are your own. Paraphrases always require an in-text citation. See the examples below, borrowed from Simon Fraser University Library and presented using MLA.

Original passage:

“Wh ere mainstream sports typically refrain from displaying unapologetically violent acts, professional wrestling dives in head first. A large portion of wrestling’s cultural appeal is generated by the psychological arousal/excitement provided by witnessing highly aggressive and violent forms of physical interaction in this sphere. Wrestling takes that which is pushed behind the scenes of social life and places it in the center ring” (Atkinson p. 62-63).

Acceptable paraphrase:

Most sports do not encourage blatant acts of violence, while professional wrestling embraces the same behavior. Wrestling appeals to audiences because people enjoy watching aggressive and violent acts in the ring. What is normally not condoned in ordinary society is made acceptable in wrestling (Atkinson 62-63).

Notice how both the original wording and structure (or order) have been changed. Changing both is the key to a successful paraphrase.

Patchwriting

Patchwriting happens when a student paraphrases poorly, plagiarizing "patches" of words from an author, often using word-for-word synonyms, changes in grammar, and tense changes. Learn how to avoid this and other accidental forms of plagiarism in our Avoiding Plagiarism section.

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Paraphrasing Purdue OWL

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Whether you are writing for the workplace or for academic purposes, you will need to research and incorporate the writing of others into your own texts. Two unavoidable steps in that process are paraphrasing (changing the language into your own) and summarizing (getting rid of smaller details and leaving only the primary points). These steps are necessary for three reasons.

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Inexperienced academic writers often have difficulty understanding and implementing academic intertextual practices, i.e. interpreting, extrapolating and integrating primary and secondary sources into their own texts. To address this need, we developed a workshop with learning stations. We identified five key difficulties students face and created seven exercises that address them. In the workshop, participants move from station to station, working on the exercises at their own pace by using pre-prepared materials at the stations. In this paper, we describe how we devised the workshop based on analysis of both the problem and the contexts in which the workshop has been carried out. Detailed descriptions for each exercise as well as a dramaturgy of the workshop are included; sample texts and handouts for each station can be found in the Appendix. Based on anecdotal participant feedback, we discuss advantages and disadvantages of the different exercises and of the workshop set-up. With the information provided, readers should be able to replicate this workshop and adapt the exercises to their own educational settings.

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  4. Purdue OWL: Quoting, Paraphrasing, and Summarizing

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COMMENTS

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  13. OWL at Purdue University

    For information on paraphrasing sources, see the Purdue OWL handout Paraphrasing at http://owl.english.purdue.edu/handouts/research/r_paraphr.html.

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    Contributors:Purdue OWL. Summary: This resources discusses how to paraphrase correctly and accurately. Learn to borrow from a source without