Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Paraphrase It

Dear D3D1 & D3D2,

One obvious mistake that all of you have in common (in the first draft) is that all of you tend to abuse use a lot of direct quotations in one paragraph. For your information, direct quotations are only used when 1) the original words from the author best expresses the idea and 2) the intended meaning might change if you paraphrase it. For example:

Cranwell-Ward (1990) defined stress as "the physiological and psychological reaction which occurs when people perceive an imbalance between the level of demand placed upon them and their capability to meet those demands."

In this example, it is all right to use direct quotation because the author's original words are good enough to define "stress". Don't forget to use quotation marks whenever you use direct quotations.

But having too much of direct quotations in one paragraph can really mar the effects when it is read. Direct quotations are like speed bumps on the road: the more you have them, the less you will enjoy driving. The same thing applies to academic writing. When I read your term paper, the reading momentum is lost when I encounter too many direct quotations. Therefore, try to use paraphrasing whenever possible and don't forget to quote the last name of the original author at the end. Since the idea is paraphrased, there is no need to use quotation marks.

Example of of Surriyah's work:

The other strategy to overcome stress is by having some exercise. Physical exercise will help to release tension, increase the flow of oxygen to the brain and consequently it will make you feel better. However, you need to avoid the exercise that requires a lot of stamina that can affetcs your health. As Cranwell-Ward (2007) stated, "Exercise regularly, at least three times a week, avoid violent exercise when you are unfit." There are several type of exercise that you can practice to overcome stress. It is the view of Newcombe (2002), "Aerobic activities such as walking or cycling will help your heart and lungs, vigorous exercise such as kickboxing could really help you to release anger or holistic practices such as yoga and tai chi can help calm both the body and mind."

It is better if the ideas are paraphrased instead of using direct quotations. Like this:

Another strategy to overcome stress is by exercising. It is a fact that physical exercise helps to relieve stress, increase oxygen supply to the brain and benefits the whole body in general. By exercising at least three times a week (Cranwell-Ward, 2007), it should be more than enough for your well-being. Newcombe (2007) had recommended several exercises that can help to relieve tension such as aerobic activities (such as walking and cycling), vigorous exercises (like kickboxing) and holistic practices (like yoga and tai chi). However, it is important to note that violent exercises should be avoided when you are not feeling well (Cranwell-Ward, 2007).

Please do your best for your final draft. Do a lot of proofreading. After all, it is worth 15% of the total assessment. The final draft, as I always said, has to be perfect.



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