Answered By: David Hughes
Last Updated: Dec 07, 2022     Views: 2


Paraphrasing is restating the words written by someone else in your own words, keeping the original meaning but expressing it in your own voice. Paraphrasing is preferred to direct quotation because:

  • It shows that you have read and understood the original source and can express the ideas contained in it in your own words
  • It's in your own voice and doesn't disrupt the flow of your work

Good paraphrasing involves changing the words, sentence structure and voice of the author. Bad paraphrasing involves only changing the words used, but keeping the same sentence structure and author's voice.

Good: To paraphrase well, you can't just change the words the author has used, you also need to freshen the way the sentence reads and use your personal voice. If you only just alter some of the writer's words then you're not paraphrasing properly 

Bad: Fine paraphrasing entails altering the words, word order, phrase structure and authors' tone. Poor paraphrasing means solely amending the terms utilised and also retaining the same word sequence and writer's style.

Paraphrasing is a good idea because by paraphrasing information, you demonstrate that you've been able to read, understand and communicate ideas in your own words.