Citing the sources you use is important, because if you draw upon other people's work in your writing and research and do not acknowledge those sources, you can be accused of plagiarism.
Citations also allow your readers to follow up sources you have referred to enabling the sharing of ideas.
Sometimes a student might accidentally plagiarise. This is usually the result of a lack of academic writing skills, inexperience, sloppy note taking, or a combination of these.
Summarizing, Paraphrasing, and Quoting
You can borrow from the works of other writers as you research. Good writers use three strategies—summarizing, paraphrasing and quoting—to blend source materials in with their own, while making sure their own voice is heard.
|Quotations are the exact words of an author, copied directly from the source word for word. Quotations must be cited!
Use quotations when:
|Paraphrasing means rephrasing the words of an author, putting his/her thoughts in your own words. A paraphrase can be viewed as a “translation” of the original source. When you paraphrase, you rework the source’s ideas, words, phrases, and sentence structures with your own. Paraphrased text is often, but not always, slightly shorter than the original work. Like quotations, paraphrased material must be followed with in-text documentation and cited the on the Works-Cited page.
|Summarizing involves putting the main idea(s) or one or several writers into your own words, including only the main point(s). Once again, it is necessary to attribute summarized ideas to the original source. Summarized ideas are not necessarily presented in the same order as in the original source. Summaries are significantly shorter than the original and take a broad overview of the source material.
(Source: Spartan Guides)