Paraphrasing: How to Paraphrase Without Plagiarism?

When writing an academic paper or blog, it is not easy to effectively paraphrase the original text without practice. Improper paraphrasing may lead to plagiarism, which could have serious consequences. This blog helps you know what paraphrasing is and how to avoid plagiarism when paraphrasing research. 

What is Paraphrasing?

Paraphrasing is expressing information and ideas in one’s own words and citing the source. Unlike a summary, a paraphrase doesn’t have to include all points given in the original text. By paraphrasing, you demonstrate your understanding of the original ideas and your ability to convey them using different words and structures while retaining the quality and original message.

Importance of Paraphrasing

Paraphrasing is a way of rewriting a message or idea of an author in your own words for a particular audience for a better understanding of it.

Rephrasing can be helpful and is essential in different ways: 

  • Paraphrasing can be an exciting way of studying a new subject or text. To paraphrase, one needs to understand the idea and message of the writer well enough to deliver the message in different words or phrases. 
  • In academic paper writing, paraphrasing is an integral part of the research. When researching a specific topic, you need to spend several hours of study and take notes on a particular topic to gain relevant knowledge. Later on, you will have to use the notes to reproduce them, which asks for paraphrasing. With rephrasing, you can produce authentic work in simple words and sentences to have the readers understand the original ideas better
  • A writer can avoid duplicate content by paraphrasing a text instead of quoting it.
  • Rewriting becomes essential when there is a need to rephrase a long, complicated sentence into a short, straightforward sentence. Using a rewriter tool, you can find alternate words and phrases for the write-ups, which helps your document to easily get through the plagiarism software. 
  • In research papers, students have to resort to paraphrasing to regenerate authentic work and avoid quoting them. They provide references to the source articles and texts from which they have used the ideas and get through the assignments in an organized way. 

Paraphrasing a Topic with the Help of Paraphrasing and Plagiarism Tools

Paraphrasing is rewriting a particular passage in your own words without changing or losing the meaning. The significance of paraphrasing is it displays the writer’s understanding of the ideas expressed by the author in the text. It also helps the writer reproduce it without any plagiarism.

Paraphrasing is different from summarizing. In paraphrasing, you write the ideas in your own words. With summarizing, you highlight the key concepts of a passage in smaller number of words. 

If a student wants to write a research paper or thesis effectively, he or she should have paraphrasing skills, rather than using free paraphrasing tools. 

Paraphrasing, Summarizing, and Quoting

When writing, especially in academics, involves incorporating ideas from other sources into your writing, paraphrasing, quoting, and summarizing help acknowledge the original sources by giving information in your own words.

With these three ways, you can avoid plagiarism and present your writing as a reliable source for readers, who can enjoy reading and enrich their knowledge.


Using paraphrasing, writers understand the author’s ideas and rephrase them creatively to attain their writing goal. Therefore, the writers who paraphrase should use their expressions, voice, and writing style.


Summarizing is to write the key points in a specific paper in a shorter way and in a writer’s own words. To summarize, one needs to extract the main points of the research or argument and express them in a short and clear way. 


By quoting, you have the author’s ideas expressed in your writing directly as expressed in the source through words, phrases, or sentences. You put them in-between quotation marks to show that you have included ideas straight from an original source.

Nevertheless, it is essential to cite the source and author in all three text types. 

What is the Difference between Paraphrasing and Plagiarism?

To understand the difference between paraphrasing and plagiarism, you should first know what plagiarism is. When you take the credit for someone’s work, idea, or thought without giving due acknowledgment, it leads to plagiarism. 

It is an act of stealing an original text or work, usually by copying and pasting the whole or parts of it and taking credit for it. Paraphrasing helps avoid plagiarism as you rephrase or reword the author’s original ideas using your own words. Moreover, you also give credit to the original source. 

In paraphrasing, writers research by reading different sources and texts, which share the same messages. They read and put them aside, and later on, write an article or academic paper without referring to the texts they read earlier. Thus, a writer expresses the ideas borrowed from the original source in his/her own words without changing their meaning.

To avoid plagiarism, you can change the structure of the text by taking only the main points and putting them in simple language. If you want to use direct quotations from the author, you should provide quotation marks. Apart from that, you have to give a proper in-text reference, along with page numbers, or else the plagiarism checkers, whether a free or paid version, will identify it as duplicate content. 

When paraphrasing becomes plagiarism?

Plagiarism is taking someone’s ideas and using them as your own. To do sufficient research and pen it down on the research paper, you need to construct multiple viewpoints and perceptions and compare their merits accordingly. It includes a method of comparing and contrasting the ideas and synthesizing them in your own words. 

The use of an article rewriter or a paraphrasing tool will not help much in this case. It will create a sloppily paraphrased text and not something that will easily give a score by the online plagiarism checker tools.

A sloppily paraphrased text is a plagiarized text. Therefore, it is better to use original words instead of copying from the master content. With a paraphrase checker, you can effectively rephrase the text using the instant results. You can find several plagiarism checkers and paraphrasing tools online to help you in this matter.

Avoid Plagiarism while Paraphrasing

To effectively paraphrase an article and avoid plagiarism, one needs to follow some strategies:

To avoid plagiarism while paraphrasing, the first step is to repeatedly read the text you want to paraphrase to gain deep knowledge of a topic. After multiple readings, it becomes an easy process.

After reading the related passage, it is advisable to write it in your own words without referring to it. It is an act of “active recall”, and it helps in understanding the topic and laying a strong foundation for the subject.

After the active recall method, the comparison of the note to the original takes place. It helps in analyzing the topic and effectively paraphrasing it. It is advisable to read and reread the work to see that it is devoid of any misinterpretation of the topic. If it is too similar to the original statement, it is better to use quotations for those parts. It is reasonable to cite the source, along with the year of publication.


Paraphrasing is an essential part of the academic sphere, and research has shown that it is helping when it comes to learning new topics. Paraphrasing is also a great tool to avoid plagiarism by merging various ideas into a single cohesive piece. However, a plagiarism checker can help you check for any copied content while paraphrasing and ensure that it is not similar to anybody’s work or idea.


Can you plagiarize by paraphrasing?

When paraphrasing, you may cause accidental plagiarism if the paraphrased text is similar or identical to the original text. The other instance is when you fail to cite the source appropriately. With the Copyleaks’ plagiarism checker, you can check and ensure whether you have paraphrased and cited the source correctly.  

How do you legally paraphrase?

Rewriting the ideas borrowed from an original source in your own words and citing the source appropriately is a legal way of paraphrasing.

What are the 4 Rs of paraphrasing?

You can practice paraphrasing by employing the 4 Rs strategy, which means Read, Restate, Recheck, and Repair. 

Is paraphrasing no better than plagiarism?

Paraphrasing is tricky. If you are successful in rephrasing the original ideas in your own words and in providing a proper citation for the source, paraphrasing is acceptable in academics, as well as writing.  

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