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Avoiding Plagiarism

Summarizing

What is Summarizing?

  • Summarizing is condensing a large amount of information from a source/author(s) using YOUR OWN WORDS.

  • You MUST cite the original source, both in-text and in your references/works cited.


When to Summarize

  • Summarize when you need to extract the main idea(s) of a source.

  • Summarize when you need to provide background or an overview of a topic.

  • Summarizing is often used in annotated bibliographies, when you must provide a paragraph or two to explain the main findings/arguments of a source/author(s).

  • Summarizing is also often used for literature reviews, when you must explain the main findings of the seminal works in a narrow field.


How to Summarize

  1. Read the original material.
  2. Set the material aside and consider what you read.
  3. Briefly describe the main point(s) IN YOUR OWN WORDS.