When using information from your research, you will likely need to incorporate summaries, paraphrases, and direct quotations in to your research papers. In order to do this ethically, and gracefully, you'll want to make sure you understand the difference between these three writing tools.
- In general when working with sources, you want at least 80% your words and 20% quotes or paraphrases cited from sources.
- Use quotes when you need the exact wording to make your argument or when it would be helpful for the audience to read as is.
- Use large quotes very sparingly. Only use block quotes when you absolutely need all of the words to express your point.
- A good way to break it up is by using pieces of direct quotes within sentences that articulate your argument.
Example of Each
Original quote: They were, all four of them, very properly furious, because the miracle had reduced their earning powers by 75 per cent, at the most conservative estimate; so they were ruined men. - Salmon Rushdie, The Prophet, pg 1525
It became clear to the men that their cure resulted in a healed body, but a bank account that was depleted by 75%. (Rushdie, 1525)
The situation revealed itself to be ironic, because once the men had been cured, they realized they were not making the same amount as they were before. So though they had their life back, they were destitute. (Rushdie, 1525)
There is irony, however, in that when they discover they have been cured, they were "very properly furious, because the miracle had reduced their earning powers by 75 per cent, at the most conservative estimate" (Rushdie 1525).
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