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Definition: Paraphrasing

Paraphrasing refers to expressing the meaning of a text or a passage in one’s own words to distill only the most essential points of that text. It is a mere restatement of ideas as the original source and contains the same information/ details.

Paraphrasing is often used to avoid plagiarism when quoting ideas from some source and is more effective than quoting directly from the original text. It also helps in succinct representation of the idea and avoids over-quoting. At the same time, it aids in achieving a fuller understanding of the original text. It is particularly useful when one is dealing with facts and definitions and involves rewriting a short section from the source text in different words whilst keeping the same meaning.

Paraphrasing requires a person to follow certain steps starting from reading the text carefully, identifying the key words and ideas, considering the points as a whole and then re-expressing them in his own words. Another way of paraphrasing is to change the order of the main ideas in a sentence by changing the active voice to passive voice or vice versa.

Hence, this concludes the definition of Paraphrasing along with its overview.


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