Summarizing and Paraphrasing
Summarizing and paraphrasing are restating information in your own words. Summarizing is condensing the a source, presenting the main ideas. Paraphrasing restates the original ideas in full, but with different wording.
Use your own words and phrasing
If you just replacing a few words with synonyms, this still counts as plagiarism Plagiarism is when you present someone else's work or ideas as your own..
For example, if you see this in an article:
In the 1950s, many women's prisons had nurseries in which infants could stay with their mothers from several weeks to two years, depending on the institution.
Kauffman, Kelsey. (2001). Mothers in prison. Corrections Today, 63(1), 62-64.
...then this is plagiarism:
In the middle of the twentieth century, most penal institutions for women had places where babies could remain with their moms from a few weeks to two years, depending upon the penal institution (Kauffman 62-63).
An better paraphrase might be:
According to Kelsey Kauffman, nurseries existed in many prisons for women at mid-century, and this allowed women to keep their babies with them from a few weeks to two years. Exactly how long depended upon the institution (62-63).
Cite your Sources
Remember, even when you are just summarizing or paraphrasing information you still need to make sure you provide proper citationsCitation is the practice of providing details about the sources of any information that you use in your work. Proper citation is necessary in academic writing..
For more on the differences between quoting, paraphrasing, and summarizing, take a look at this guide from the PSU Writing Center.