How to Paraphrase effectively in the IELTS exam.

Hello; Paraphrasing is an important IELTS skill. This post will show different methods to paraphrase effectively in the IELTS exam.

Paraphrasing is just re-writing a phrase or sentence in a way that it has the exact meaning, but with different words. Paraphrasing is one of the foremost important skills to learn before doing all of your IELTS tests. It is not only useful in IELTS writing and speaking, but it also important in reading and listening tests. In other words, if you learn the proper methods to paraphrase a sentence, then you are more likely to get your desired band score.

Let’s check out an example:

Simple sentence: 

Wearing a helmet is one of the most important things to do before riding a bike.

Paraphrased sentence: 

Prior to riding a bike, wearing a helmet is one of the most crucial things to do.

As you'll see, the second sentence (paraphrased sentence) uses synonyms to vary some vocabulary (e.g., ‘important’ for ‘crucial’ and ‘’prior’’ to ‘before’ and changes the grammar)

Paraphrasing can be done by using these three methods. In the IELTS exam, you should use all three methods of paraphrasing to make different forms of sentences, but sometimes two will only be possible.


Methods to paraphrase in the IELTS exam:

⇒Method Number 1: paraphrasing with the use of synonyms.

Synonyms are different words which have identical meaning. For example ‘ailments’ is the synonym of disease and ‘ tough’ is the synonym of ‘ difficult’. this method simply replaces words with the same meaning in order to produce a new sentence.

For example:

⇒  Simple sentence: 

        The nation needs youth for its development.

⇒  paraphrased sentence: 

        The country requires youngsters for its growth.

As you can see in the above sentence I have replaced all the words with their synonyms. Sometimes it is not possible to replace all the words, but you should try to use as much as synonyms you can.

Method Number 2: Prapphrasing by changing the Word Order.

Changing the ordering also allows us to effectively paraphrase a sentence, but while using this method we have to be careful. Don’t change the word order without considering how this affects the grammar of the sentence. By changing the word order means additions of a new word, removing existing words, and changing the form of the word.

You can easily change the order of the clauses if the first sentence has multiple clauses.


⇒  As more and more people are becoming non-vegetarian, there is a fear that many species of animals will die out.

Paraphrasing by changing word order:

⇒  There is a fear that many animal species will die out, as more and more people are having a non-vegetarian diet.

We could also use synonyms to paraphrase it even more:

⇒  There is a fear that a lot of wildlife inhabitants will become instinct, as an increasing number of people are inclining towards non-vegetarian food.

Method Number 3: Change from Active to Passive.

This is the most effective method to paraphrase sentences in IELTS writing. In the IELTS exam, questions are normally in the active voice so we can easily turn them into passive voice. By using this method, we can have a variety of structures in the IELTS writing and speaking exam.

For example:

Example active sentence

⇒ The U.S government has invested 50 million$ in the sports industry.

Example passive sentence

⇒  $50 million was invested in the sports industry by the U.S government.

We can also use the passive voice in academic writing when we don’t have to present our opinion.

Example active voice

⇒  Some people say that the exploration and development of safe alternatives to fossil fuel should be the most important global priority today.

Example passive voice

⇒  Exploration of safe alternatives to non-renewable energy sources is considered by many people as the most crucial global priority these days.

FAQs on paraphrasing in the IELTS exam:

1. How do you paraphrase in the IELTS exam?

There are many methods to paraphrase in the IELTS, but the main and the most useful methods are,

1. Paraphrasing with the use of synonyms

2. Paraphrasing by changing word order

3. Paraphrasing by changing the form of voice ( Active to passive)

You can learn this method I detail at:

2. What's an example of a paraphrase?

Here is the example of paraphrase,

Simple sentence: Some people say that the exploration and development of safe alternatives to fossil fuel should be the most important global priority today.

Paraphrased sentence: Exploration of safe alternatives to non-renewable energy sources are considered by many people as the most crucial global priority these days.

3. How do you paraphrase quickly in the IELTS exam?

First of all, read the passage many times to fully comprehend the meaning.

Secondly, write down key concepts.

After that, write your version of the text without looking at the original.

Compare your paraphrased text with the original passage and make small adjustments to phrases that remain too identical.

4. What are paraphrasing skills in the IELTS?

Paraphrasing is presenting ideas and knowledge in your own words and acknowledging where they are available from. By using your own words, you demonstrate your understanding and your ability to convey this information.


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