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When it comes to writing academic papers, paraphrasing your sources can be one of the trickiest tasks. Whether you are trying to cite another author’s work or simply rearrange your own words, paraphrasing requires great attention to detail.
In order to ensure that your paper meets the standards laid forth by your professor, there are several citation styles that you can use.
Here, we will discuss what citation styles are best to use during paraphrasing, as well as how to use them correctly.
Why is it Important to Cite Original Sources when paraphrasing?
In academic circles and in general contexts, it is important to cite original sources when paraphrasing in order to avoid plagiarism. By citing the original source material, readers and reviewers can see that the work is based on research, rather than copied or stolen content.
It is also important to give credit becasue it ensures that the authors of the original material are given the recognition they deserve.
What Citation Styles Are Available for Paraphrasing?
When it comes to paraphrasing sources in your paper, there are several citation styles that can be used. The two most common styles are the Modern Language Association (MLA) and the American Psychological Association (APA).
The Modern Language Association (MLA)
The Modern Language Association primarily deals with literature and language, with its citation style being used for humanities papers.
It follows a format of listing the author’s last name, the title of the source (in parentheses), and then the page number. The citation style for MLA can be used for paraphrasing in academic papers.
An example of this style would look like the following: (Smith 44). This means that the quoted text can be found on page 44 of the text by author Smith.
The American Psychological Association (APA)
The American Psychological Association primarily deals with scientific and medical papers, being used mostly in the social sciences. It follows a format of listing the author’s last name, the year of the source (in parentheses), and then the page number.
APA citation style can be used for paraphrasing in academic papers as well.
An example of this style would look like the following: (Smith, 2020, p. 44). This means that the quoted text can be found on page 44 of the text by author Smith which was published in 2020.
Tips to paraphrase and cite sources correctly
Using a citation style correctly during paraphrasing is essential for correctly representing your source in your paper and giving them credit for their work.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when paraphrasing a source and citing it correctly:
1. Understand the Source
Before you begin paraphrasing a source, you must take the time to read and understand it thoroughly.
A solid understanding of what the author is saying will help you to create a more appropriate paraphrase.
2. Keep the Original Meaning
When you are paraphrasing, try to stick to the original meaning of the source.
Even though you may switch up the words, you should keep the original idea intact. This will help ensure that your paraphrase accurately reflects the source.
3. Write in Your Own Words
Your paraphrase should be in your own words. Make sure to steer clear of any copy-pasted phrases or ideas.
Writing in your own words will help to ensure that your paraphrases are accurate, as well as avoid any potential plagiarism issues.
4. Include In-Text Citations
In-text citations should be included in your paper each time you are rewriting someone’s statement. This will help your professor to easily identify who the source is and where to find it.
4. Use Relevant Citation Styles
When you are paraphrasing a source, make sure to use the appropriate citation style. As mentioned above, the two most common ones are the Modern Language Association (MLA) and the American Psychological Association (APA).
You can also consider Chicago citation style besides these two popular citation styles.
Paraphrasing sources for academic papers can be tricky. However, with the right knowledge and understanding of the source material, it does not have to be.
In order to ensure that your paper meets the standards laid forth by your professor, there are several citation styles that you can use during paraphrasing.
By following the steps outlined above, you can easily use the right citation styles and accurately paraphrase your sources.
Emma John is a writer with deep understanding of AI rewriters and paraphrasing tools. She is currently pursuing Computer Science at the University of St Andrews in the United Kingdom. She excels in writing about the advances in technology and its allied fields.