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Video Transcripts

Paraphrasing Sources: Comparing Paraphrasing and Quoting

Last updated 5/18/2016


Visual: The Walden University Writing Center logo is visible at the bottom of the screen along with a pencil and notebook. “Walden University Writing Center. Your writing, grammar, and APA experts” appears in center of screen. The background changes to a bright orange text book which reads “Paraphrasing Sources" as a heading and "Comparing Paraphrasing & Quoting” as a title.

Audio: Guitar music plays.


Visual: Slide changes to a mostly gray slide with the heading: "Paraphrasing: One form of evidence." Below the heading are two blue boxes comparing quotation and paraphrase.  The blue box to the left has a Yield sign at the top which is red and an upside down triangle.  Along the side of the text box, written vertically, it reads "Quotation." Inside the box is the following text, describing quotation:

  • Identical to original
  • Narrow (1+ lines)
  • Cited
    • Quotation marks
    • Author, year, page/paragraph #

The blue box to the right has a green "Go!" Sign that is diamond shaped at the top.  Along the side of the text box, written vertically, it reads "Paraphrase."  Inside the text box is the following text, describing paraphrase:

  • Your own words & sentence structure
  • Shorter than original
  • Narrow
  • Cited
  • Author/year

Audio:  A quote is where the information is identical to the original source. So, you are using word for word the exact same thing that the original source said. In a paraphrase, you are going to change your wording, change the sentence structure, still keep the same information, but you're going to put it into your own words.

When you cite a quote, you use quotation marks, you use the author, the year, and then a page number or paragraph number. In a paraphrase, you give the author and the year, and you can choose to give a page number, but it is not required. So, there is a little bit of a difference in citation.

You will see the quotation marks have a yield sign and paraphrase has a go sign here. That is because we really want to be weary of using direct quotations too often. When you use a direct quotation, you're parroting someone else's information, kind of like a little parrot copies and imitates people's words. That is in essence what we're doing. When we use a direct quotation, we're not using our own words, we're using someone else's. It can be helpful to use someone else's words, but to do that often shows we're not critically engaging with the information. We're not really diving in and understanding necessarily. I could copy and paste multiple quotes out of the book, but if I don't explain them, integrate them, or use them in any sort of way, why would anyone want to read my work, right? They would want to go back to the original book. It would be much easier. Be aware that quotations can be helpful, but you do really want to be weary of using them too often.

Paraphrases, however, are always going to be stronger. When you can take information and put it into your own words, it really shows that you are critically using that text. You're understanding it and are able to rearticulate it in a new and fresh way.


Visual: “Walden University Writing Center. Questions? E-mail” appears in center of screen.

Audio: Guitar music.