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UNIV 199: International Student Orientation

This guide will provide you information that will help you with the research work you will do at FHSU. It provides information on searching the library catalog, citing and evaluating resources, and tutorials.

Quoting, Paraphrasing, and Summarizing

How to Avoid Plagiarism

Explore the tabs on this box to learn how to summarize, paraphrase, and use quotations in your writing. There are writing formulas to help you incorporate another author's work into your own writing to help you focus on using your own words while crediting where the original ideas came from. Essentially, by following the steps below, you'll avoid plagiarism while following the APA citation style.

Step 1: Identify which words and/or ideas you borrowed

Insert a summary, paraphrase or quotation from your an article/book you've found to incorporate another author's words and ideas into your writing. If you use your own words to properly paraphrase or summarize another author's work, the in-text citation helps the reader identify which ideas you've borrowed and from whom you've borrowed them. If you quote another author's words in your paper, the in-text citation also helps the reader identify who and where that quotation originally came from.


Step 2: Acknowledge where it came from

Your in-text citation helps acknowledge the author and identify where the words/ideas came from.

Example of using a paraphrase from an author: 

Kearney suggested that writing notes after reading a passage can help students with paraphrasing 
and make it easier to paraphrase in many of the instances in which students instinctively want to 
quote (2019). 


Step 3: Provide detailed information about where it came from

The original work should also have a full citation in a Reference List or Works Cited page.

Kearney, V. (2019, March 26). How to teach paraphrasing, quotation and summary. Owlcation.

A summary is:

  • a way of incorporating an author's main idea by using your own words
  • summarizes the whole source, not just a section or key point
  • much shorter than the original piece


Use a summary FREQUENTLY, in cases when:

  • you need to describe the main idea of a book, article or passage
  • referring to an author's major argument
  • describing a theory you plan to apply to your work


Sentence Structure Formulas for Summarizing:

  • The purpose of author's article is to argue [insert summary in your own words] (in-text citation). 
  • Author's thesis boils down to [insert summary in your own words] (in-text citation). 
  • Numerous researchers have found [insert summary in your own words] (Author, in-text citation).
  • In summary, author argues that [insert summary in your own words] (in-text citation).



In summary, Kearney argues that students who understand how to quote, paraphrase, and summarize 
will write stronger papers and have less of a tendency to plagiarize (2019).



A paraphrase is:

  • an easier way to incorporate another author's specific points into your paper 
  • an accurate and comprehensive account of the author's ideas
  • written in your own words and uses a different sentence structure than the original work (see suggested sentence structures)


Use a paraphrase VERY FREQUENTLY, in cases when:

  • you need to describe the author's evidence and engage with his/her findings
  • referring to a short passage
  • the source is not authoritative or interesting enough to quote


Sentence Structure Formulas for Paraphrase:

  • On the one hand, author #1 argues [insert paraphrase in your own words] (in-text citation). On the other hand, author #2  believes[insert paraphrase in your own words]  (in-text citation).
  • Author suggested that [insert paraphrase in your own words]  (in-text citation). 
  • According to researchers, [insert paraphrase in your own words]  (Author, in-text citation).



Kearney suggested that writing notes after reading a passage can help students with paraphrasing 
and make it easier to paraphrase in many of the instances in which students instinctively want to 
quote (2019). 



A quotation is:

  • a way of incorporating another author's ideas using the exact words from the original source
  • included in your own sentence (see suggested sentence structures)
  • used to explain, illustrate, support, or give an example


Use a quotation INFREQUENTLY, in cases when:

  • you need to preserve vivid or technical language
  • you want to comment on a quotation
  • comparing or contrasting your point of view and the quotation
  • a paraphrase might alter the meaning


Sentence Structure Formulas for Quotations:

  • Author states, "insert quote here" (in-text citation). In other words, author believes [explain the quote in your own words].
  • According to author, "insert quote here(in-text citation)Author is supporting the argument that [explain the quote's argument in your own words]. 
  • In the book, [title of book], author maintains that "insert quote here(in-text citation). In making this comment, author urges us to [explain the quote in your own words].



According to Kearney, "even well-prepared students are often not clear about when and how to use 
summary, quotation, and paraphrase" (2019). Kearney is supporting the argument that these concepts 
can be difficult to teach and learn but practice and awareness can reduce the tendency for students 
to plagiarize someone else's work. 



Avoiding Plagiarism

Plagiarism basics

"All of the following are considered plagiarism:

  • turning in someone else's work as your own
  • copying words or ideas from someone else without giving credit
  • failing to put a quotation in quotation marks
  • giving incorrect information about the source of a quotation
  • changing words but copying the sentence structure of a source without giving credit
  • copying so many words or ideas from a source that it makes up the majority of your work, whether you give credit or not (see our section on "fair use" rules)

Most cases of plagiarism can be avoided, however, by citing sources. Simply acknowledging that certain material has been borrowed, and providing your audience with the information necessary to find that source, is usually enough to prevent plagiarism." 

Source:  What is plagiarism? (n.d.) Retrieved from <>

Review the FHSU policy on Academic Honesty.

This lesson on citations can help you avoid plagiarism. 

NLA Citations Lesson

Citations Tutorial Link

Citations are more than just a formality that protects against plagiarism. They allow individuals to participate in a scholarly conversation that is taking place among researchers in a specific field. In this lesson, students will explore types of citations and how citations can be used in academic writing.