Proper paraphrasing isn’t as simple as rewording the content from top-to-bottom. Instead, the purpose of paraphrasing is to render the content in a new light and make it a lot better—or original.
However, the intention of avoiding plagiarism while paraphrasing is just as important as paraphrasing properly. Today, we’re exploring a few such tactics to paraphrase paragraphs without plagiarizing. So, let’s get started.
Why Is Paraphrasing Important To Avoid Plagiarism?
Paraphrasing is important because it helps avoid plagiarism. It also makes your content more readable and easier to understand. When you paraphrase, you are putting your own words in the place of someone else’s words.
This is in contrast with quotes which means that you are using the exact same words that someone else has used before. The most common reason for paraphrasing is to avoid plagiarism.
Plagiarizing another person’s work can also result in infringement lawsuits, often with receiving a cease and desist letter asking you to stop engaging in the violation. If you fail to respond to a cease and desist letter, you may receive a notice of non-compliance which could mean the plaintiff is prepared to file a lawsuit against you.
Plagiarism can come in many forms, such as:
- copying someone else’s work word-for-word;
- or using their ideas without giving them credit.
Thus, one of the best ways to avoid plagiarism is by paraphrasing your work and not quoting it directly from anyone else’s writing or speech. This can also make your content more readable and easier to understand for your readers too!
4 Ways To Paraphrase Paragraphs Without Plagiarizing
Paraphrasing is one of the key aspects of writing plagiarism-free content. In this section, we’re talking about four practices that’ll help you paraphrase to avoid plagiarism in paragraphs. So, let’s begin.
1. Use The Right Synonyms
Synonyms are your best friends in avoiding plagiarism. The meaning or definition of a synonym is a word that expresses something using another term, word, or phrase. For the words that are present within a content, it’s your responsibility to find what else they’re synonymous with. Here’s how:
- Use Google to find synonyms;
- Use major dictionaries like Merriam-Webster, Oxford, or Cambridge;
- Replace the difficult synonyms with the easier ones;
- Avoid using the same synonyms as in the original content.
An example of using a synonym in a sentence is:
“He’s a very rebellious leader!”
“He’s a very defiant leader!”
Now, nothing besides the main word has changed. However, it’s only ideal for smaller sentences like this. You can check the word count of the small sentences to make sure you are paraphrasing your content without exceeding the sentence word limit.
Using it on a grander scale might earn you the brand of plagiarism. That’s something you don’t want, so it’s important to use synonyms responsibly in all your writing.
2. Avoid Structuring The Sentence In The Same Way
The structure of your sentence is something that determines the originality of your writing. Remember, the structure of any text also determines the style of writing employed by a particular writer. As well as their content tone.
So, it’s important to not only devise your own structuring style but also necessary. But how exactly do you do that in paraphrasing? Let’s take a sentence, for example:
“The boat-rowing adventure went quite well. It was a good weekend for both sides.”
Now, these are two simple sentences. You can try to replace synonyms, but that won’t be effective in avoiding plagiarism. That’s why it’s necessary for us to restructure these sentences. Or merge them into one. Here’s how:
“The weekend was quite a treat for either side. Mainly because their boat-rowing adventure turned out quite amusing.”
Do you see how the subject of boat-rowing is now in the second sentence? Doing that alone made us restructure this sentence efficiently and avoid plagiarism. But, had we used the same structure and synonyms, it would have been patchwork plagiarism.
To avoid that, we restructured the text instead of using an alternative synonym, like “Boating adventure” or something—you get the idea.
3. Rephrase For Citation
Rewording and rephrasing are two of the most dependable ways of avoiding plagiarism. However, they’re only effective if you’re rephrasing or rewording with the intention of citing the original author. You see, the main reason plagiarism causes many issues is the lack of citations.
So, how exactly do you rephrase for a citation? Here’s an example of an original sentence:
“The law clearly states that these methods were against the ethical human norms.”
And here’s how you can rephrase this text for easier citation or hyperlinking:
“In a research conducted/text written by ‘Author Name‘ clearly stated that these tactics were “against the ethical norms,” which tells us why we should avoid it.”
As you can see, the underlined words determine two things:
- The author’s name;
- And the text or work you’re citing.
So, rephrasing with the intention of giving a writer their full credit allows you to rephrase more efficiently and saves you from unwanted trouble. Thus, you need to ensure that you’re paraphrasing with the intention of citing the source.
4. Use Quotes Whenever Necessary
Quotes are one of the most viable ways of avoiding plagiarism. While quoting is vastly different from citation, you can use quotes as a viable way to steer away from plagiarism. Let’s say you wish to use a sentence from the plagiarized section.
And, you have the source for citation. Here’s how you’d do it:
“The law also states that any and all proceedings shall go to the families of the affected.”
“In their argument, this particular writer also claims something bold about the law. They said, “The law also states that any and all proceedings shall go to the families of the affected, “which is factual. And, you can actually find more information on this in your local law.”
As you can see in the paraphrased quotation, all we did was agree with the original writer. Instead of paraphrasing or rewriting it, we used their quote and gave them their due credit. This is one of the most viable ways to avoid plagiarism in a paragraph.
These are the four key methods of paraphrasing a paragraph to avoid plagiarism. Remember, it’s important to rewrite your content to make your text original. Therefore, not only do you need to rewrite certain aspects, but you also need to restructure your content. This will allow you to comfortably avoid plagiarism and its consequences.