Citation and paraphrasing. What should you know?

In writing your final thesis, you will inevitably have to quote some author or paraphrase it. Therefore, by properly selecting from the text what you need, you will not receive plagiarism.


Quotes are the original, unchanged text segment of another author used in the research of your writing. The quotation in the final thesis must be placed in quotation marks. The source of the information must also be clearly indicated: the author, the title of the book, the place of publication, the year and the relevant page.

A short citation is usually convenient to incorporate into your sentence, distinguishing the quoted word or combination of words by quotation marks. Broader text segments can become independent parts of the text. However, the full text of your final thesis cannot consist of quotations alone. Quotes should only be used sporadically, because each independent quote must have a clear meaning and rhetorical purpose. Then, when it is not necessary to retain the author’s original wording, but to convey the main idea, it is advisable to paraphrase the text.

Citation is possible when:

incontrovertible evidence or an incredible idea. The quote is placed so that the reader clearly understands what has been said without risking to change the original thought;

an idea presented in an unusual way or sentence is presented with a special formulation. Thus, what is not possible to say in other words or other phrases is quoted;

examine a specific quote. For example, if you are analyzing a specific literary work at work, the parts to be analyzed must be quoted;

by paraphrasing, there is a danger of distorting the thought;

wants to prove that the researcher really made such a statement;

it is necessary to clarify the information already provided and to quote it;

the concept of a specific author borrowed and used by him. In this case, it makes sense to quote that definition;

The other author supports the idea you develop and it is important for you to show it to reduce your doubts.


To paraphrase – to express the idea or idea of ​​another author in his own words without changing the meaning of the sentence or segment.

For paraphrasing, the larger part of the text is usually collapsed and contains synthesized information. You also need to specify the source of the information when rephrasing, but no quotes are given here.

Retain your writing style by rephrasing.

To paraphrase:

  • read the paragraph or paragraph relevant to you;
  • Select those details or phrases that support your idea;
  • read the paragraph or paragraph again;
  • tell in your own words what you remember.

If necessary, repeat all steps again. When you are able to formulate a phrase that matches the idea of ​​the text, write it down. Make sure you keep the essence of the text, but you haven’t used the author’s wording. Mark those phrases that cannot be changed by quotation marks.

Remember that paraphrasing is not just a sentence in the same sentence, replacing the synonyms of the original text. This is the use of the information in the text in your research without using the original wording. In other words, by paraphrasing, just take the material you need, not the text of the other author.

You need to rephrase when:

  • an important idea of ​​the text, not specific words or phrases;
  • you can convey the idea of ​​the text in a simpler and more understandable way than the author of the text did;

The details provided in the original source may distract the reader by providing too many details not related to the argument you defend.

In the final thesis, incorrect quotation and paraphrasing can lead to plagiarism in your work. So, be careful with other authors’ thoughts.

If you have more questions about the choice of quoted literature sources and their use, you can always contact the staff.