5 Tips for Effective Paraphrasing

Embarking on research about paraphrasing can be daunting due to the vast information available. However, there’s no need for concern. This article offers clear tips for effective paraphrasing.

An Introduction to Paraphrasing

Before diving into the tips, let’s first understand what paraphrasing is.

Paraphrasing is the art of rewording text while keeping its original meaning intact. Although straightforward, it can be time-consuming, especially with longer texts.

There are various methods to paraphrase content. You can either do it manually or use an online tool.

The essence of paraphrasing is to make changes in word choice and sentence structure. The approach, however, may vary between manual paraphrasing and using digital tools.

This article focuses on tips that are particularly useful for manual paraphrasing.

Tips for Better Paraphrasing

1. Understand the Original Text

As we’ve previously highlighted, paraphrasing involves rewording content without changing its original meaning. If the original meaning is altered, the process is no longer true paraphrasing.

It’s crucial to first comprehend the text. This is why you should thoroughly understand the original text before you start to rephrase it.

When you fully grasp the original message, you can present the same ideas in a new way.

However, if you don’t understand the original text and begin paraphrasing without this knowledge, you risk changing the meaning, which could compromise your work.

2. Use Relevant and Contextually Correct Synonyms

Replacing original words with synonyms is a key step in paraphrasing. Synonyms are words with similar meanings, such as “big” and “large.”

However, it’s essential to choose synonyms that fit the context of the original words. For effective paraphrasing, it’s about selecting the most appropriate words to replace the originals.

For example, “helpful” and “supportive” are synonyms, but they convey different nuances. A car’s manual can be described as “helpful,” but not “supportive,” which has more emotional implications.

3. Break and Merge Sentences Where Possible

Many people limit their paraphrasing to just changing words. However, this approach doesn’t fully embrace effective paraphrasing, as the overall structure of the content remains unchanged.

To effectively paraphrase, it’s beneficial to alter the structure of sentences. This can be done by dividing longer sentences into shorter ones or combining several short sentences into longer, more comprehensive ones.

Consider this example:

John is 30 years old, a master of English, and has communication skills admired by all.

This sentence can be broken down as follows:

John is a master of English. He has impressive communication skills, making him admired by those he meets.

Conversely, merging sentences involves combining shorter ones into a cohesive longer sentence. This is the opposite approach to breaking sentences. For instance, if the original text comprises many short sentences, these can be seamlessly merged.

Merging can be achieved using colons or semicolons. For example:

Vladimir is 18 years old. He enjoys gaming. He follows a healthy diet.

These sentences can be combined as:

Vladimir, 18, enjoys gaming and maintains a healthy diet.

Note: When paraphrasing through sentence restructuring, ensure the original meaning remains intact.

4. Maintain the Tone and Tenor of the Original Content

As mentioned at the start, paraphrasing means relaying the same message with different words. Therefore, it’s essential to preserve the tone and tenor of the original content to keep its original intent.

For instance, if the original content has a descriptive tone, your paraphrasing should also reflect this. Avoid changing it to an interrogative or any other tone.

5. Proofread Once Done to Ensure Zero Imperfections and Contextual Deviation

Once you’ve finished paraphrasing, it’s important to proofread your work. Look out for these common issues:

  1. Grammatical Mistakes: Grammatical errors can distort the meaning of your content, leading to misunderstandings. Ensure your content is grammatically correct during proofreading.
  2. Spelling Errors: Spelling mistakes can undermine the credibility of your content and reflect poorly on your writing skills. Eliminate all spelling errors in your proofread content.
  3. Contextually Incorrect Word Replacements or Phrase Changes: Ensure all synonyms and phrases fit the context. Replace any word or phrase that doesn’t align contextually with the original meaning.


We hope the tips on “effective paraphrasing” discussed above are helpful. Remember, mastering paraphrasing takes practice, but by adhering to these guidelines, you can enhance your skills. Keep these tips handy as a checklist for your paraphrasing tasks.