What is Paraphrasing and how you can do it?

  • The first step in this process would be the reading of the text you want to paraphrase.
  • Highlight the words and phrases that are most meaningful and flexible to change.
  • Compare the paraphrased paragraph with the original text.
  • Change the semantics while keeping the original idea the same.

I will discuss the paraphrasing detail in this article, but firstly let’s talk about

What is paraphrasing?

The process of intellectual reproduction that consists of expressing in one’s own words what others have said or written.

 The main objective of paraphrasing is to convert your content that is more understandable and easy to read by the receiver.

It can be said an educational resource since paraphrasing is based on the adaption of what others have said in their own words and it can be knowledge at the same time.

Thus paraphrasing can be seen in cases like:

  • To reproduction of the text or the phrase.
  • A verse is described in another style.
  • When you translate the idea in other languages.

Types of Paraphrase

Paraphrase can be classified into two types:

1. Constructive or creative paraphrase:

This type of rephrase consists of reworking any text to obtain a different one. For example, “Generosity is the quality that I value the most” can be rephrased into “I consider sympathy to a value that is distinguished from the others”. Here you can see that the two sentences maintain the same essence and are almost the same in terms of meaning.

2. The mechanical Paraphrase:

It consists of substituting the expressions for other phrases or synonyms which assumes minor syntax change. For example, “First class tickets are very expensive, but worth every penny invested” can be rephrased into “Investing in a first-class flight pays off, even if it’s quite expensive.”

How to paraphrase a text (in detail)?

  • Read the original text, understand its meaning and intention.
  • Try to recognize the main idea or concept, which can be called the summary of the topic.
  • Identify the secondary ideas or concepts (that complement what has been said).
  • Find the words you don’t know about and use synonyms for difficult words.
  • Replace original words with others attributing their own writing.
  • It is also important to keep several words from the original concept.
  • Identify the source within the text i.e. author, year, page
  • When using phrases or words that are exact to the original text, be sure to enclose them in quotation marks.
  • Maintain the original tone of the text for example if it is humorous, try to remain on that track.
  • Imagine you are writing “Translation” of the original text.
  • Read the paraphrase and compare it with the primary one.

Additional Tips

  • Put the original text aside.
  • Review your paraphrase, sentences, and words.
  • Compare the primary and paraphrased paragraph.
  • Verify that both versions have the same meaning.
  • Contrast the paraphrase with the original to verify if there was any modification of the information.
  • Make sure that any use of the author’s original phrases, or words is correctly cited in quotation marks and attributed to the author.

Characteristics of the Paraphrasing

The main characteristics of the paraphrasing must be taken into account, which is the following:

1. Accuracy

The paraphrase must accurately reflect the original concept, tone, and focus on the topic being discussed.

2. Authenticity

The paraphrase must keep all important ideas from the original source, not just parts of it. Its construction must be completed with all the key ideas.

3. Objectivity

The paraphrase must not include personal opinions, it must reflect the thought of authentic source.

Online Paraphrasing tools

If you are comfortable putting some effort into it, then better luck to you. But if you are not much creative that you can’t do it by yourself, then you can take help from the paraphrasing tools available on the internet.

These tools are very reliable and you can use them without paying. The best online paraphrasing tool  almost does the same work as a normal human during paraphrasing.

I have given the following example so you check how these tools work. After selecting the original content, you can paste it in any paraphrasing tool available online and click on the paraphrase button.

After clicking on the button “Paraphrase”, the tool will start to rephrase your content, wait for it, and then compare both the versions to see if your is paragraph is paraphrased correctly.

You can see that synonyms of some words are changed and now they are easy to read.

Importance of Paraphrasing

The use of paraphrased is a valuable element for teaching and learning since the original text is respected but the content can be extended to make it more understandable and informative and can be useful as a study and research strategy.

It is a method for students to practice and improve their written and reading comprehension, improve their vocabulary, and develop the ability to interpret and create. It is also a resource to avoid the repetition of terms.

Paraphrasing is considered a method of text reduction along with the summary and synthesis.

Using the paraphrasing technique, it is useful to express the research work in your own words what the different authors have said about it, and therefore it is evident that they have been understood.

It is important to teach students to use this resource in translations from one idea to another, which means that the student feels free to express in his words what he understands from what he has heard or read.

And thus avoiding literal translations that are often difficult and meaningless to express meanings twisted or not contained in the original message.

Some of the paraphrased examples are the following:

  • “Choose a job that you like and you won’t have to work a day of your whole life.”  – Confucius

Paraphrase: If you like your work you will see it as a pleasure, not as an obligation.

  • “We are all very ignorant. What happens is that not all of us ignore the same things.” – Albert Einstein

Paraphrase: No person knows everything, what happens is that everyone knows different topics.

Conclusion

A paraphrase explains more simply, what a more complex text says. So, we have seen some techniques in this article, through which you can paraphrase the original idea very easily and efficiently.

 It is not explicitly about translating from another language, but explaining with simple words in a way that is better understood so that someone with less information can understand it or adapt it to another culture.

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