The Writing Program at Benedictine

Summarizing, Paraphrasing, and Quoting

Students are often confused about the differences between summarizing, paraphrasing, and quoting.Chapter 13 of The St. Martin's Handbook (Integrating Sources into Your Writing) provides detailed information about the differences and how to cite each.

ALL THREE MUST BE CITED TO AVOID PLAGIARISM

Summarizing:This is when you use the ideas from another source, but the text is far shorter than the outside source. For example, you can summarize an entire book in one or two sentences. This is a good options when the main ideas of a source are helpful but the details are not.

Paraphrasing:
This is when you use the ideas from another source, and the text is about the same length as the outside source. This is a good option when details are important but exact words are not.
Do this paraphrasing activity for practice.

Quoting:
This is using exact words from an outside source. This is a good option when you can't improve on the exact wording.

 
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