How to Paraphrase in IELTS writing

learn how to paraphrase
In the IELTS test, Leaning how to paraphrase plays a very crucial role in both the writing module as well as the speaking module. As these two modules are used as a test of assessing the theoritical and speaking abilities of a test taker,  the introduction may be paraphrased so as to get a kick start for the topic that is given.



IELTS is an English proficiency test that is a prerequisite for students and prospective immigrants who aspire to settle in an English speaking country. The talent and the perception are the two factors that get the ball rolling for this process.  Undoubtedly, there would be no compromise on the linguistic skills that a test taker has to demonstrate in the exam.  Of the many skills,   Paraphrasing stands out to be the most important one. It is also called ‘Rephrasing’. Paraphrasing can be defined as modifying the sentence by using synonyms without changing the meaning of the original sentence.


Paraphrasing can be done in various ways, depending on the question prompt.



In the writing module, there are two tasks, and both the tasks must be answered by the candidates. In the speaking module, there are three parts. In all these parts, the introductory sentence, which is also known as the topic sentence conveys the gist of the answer. Paraphrasing can be useful for the conclusion as well. Let us understand the different ways of how to paraphrase in ielts writing.




1. Paraphrasing by using synonyms:



Synonyms are parallel expressions.  Two or more words that mean the same. In a given sentence,  the keywords should be identified first.  This is followed by replacing the words in the question with their synonyms and ensuring that it fits the context.  Care must be taken so as to avoid those words that are similar to the word given but do not completely mean the same.


Let us consider the example of the word ‘teenagers’. The synonym for this word can be ‘adolescents’ . Though the word ‘young adults ‘may look similar to the original word,  an adult is a person who has attained an age of 18 years.  Hence,  this time is not the appropriate choice for the replacement. The candidate must frame a proper,  meaningful sentence with synonyms in this method.


Choosing the incorrect synonym might make the reader descend into confusion, which eventually would lead to lesser band score.


Let’s consider the following example.




Many people are buying products online these days.
After paraphrasing, the possible answer could be


Currently, most of the individuals are purchasing commodities using online resources.


It can be inferred clearly that the choice of words is the main factor in effective paraphrasing.


2. By changing the order of clauses:



Sometimes, paraphrasing may also be done by interchanging the order in which the clauses are given in the question prompt. This technique mainly words when the given question is a complex sentence. There are two types of paraphrasing by changing the clause order-one method is by simple interchanging, and the second is by interchanging and using synonyms. The second method gets a higher number of credits in the IELTS test.


Method 1: Interchanging
Example: Although it raining heavily, we went out.
Since it is a complex sentence, the order of the clauses can be reversed. Remember not to insert a comma for the second sentence as seen below.
Example : We went out although it was raining heavily.
Method 2: Interchanging + using synonyms:
Let’s take the same example and use synonyms.
Though there was a heavy downpour, we opted to go out.
Another way of writing it is
We decided to go out though there was a heavy downpour.

3. By changing the word form:

In the English language, certain words share a common root words.  Such words together constitute a word family .Using the words from a family is the simplest and the easiest form of paraphrasing. Look at this example: Imagine that the word in the question is ‘believe’.  The various forms of this word are : believed,  belief,  beliefs,  believing,  believes, believable,  unbelievable,etc. All these words may be used to paraphrase.
Example : Some people believe that children should be educated in separate schools.
Paraphrased : It is the belief of some individuals that boys and girls should be educated in single sex schools.
Note that in the paraphrased sentence,  the root word believe is modified to belief.  This is the essence of this method.  Using synonyms would be an added advantage.

4. Begin the sentence with a gerund:

Gerunds are the word forms that take the suffix -ing at the end. These are nouns that are formed when the suffix -ing is added to the base form of the verb.  Example : Working, Purchasing,  Deciding,etc. Another possible way to paraphrase is by starting a sentence with a gerund.
Example: Some experts claim that obesity is caused by excessive consumption of food.
Paraphrased: Overeating is thought to be the root cause of obesity by some people.
Another way: Consuming large amounts of food is felt to be the primary reason for obesity by some people.

5. By modifying the structure of a sentence.

Basically, there are two ways to structure a sentence.  They are
1. Active voice
2. Passive voice
Active voice : This is the most common form of a sentence.  It follows the structure


  Subject + verb + object
Subject + auxiliary verb + main verb + object.
In both these formulae,  the subject ( the doer of the action ) is the primary focus. Such a sentence is said to be in the active voice.


Passive voice: Passive voice is another form of the sentence where the object becomes the prime focus in a sentence. The positions of the subject and the object are interchamged along with which form of  the auxiliary verb is modified to the past perfect form, or the v3 form.


Let’s paraphrase a sentence from the active voice to the passive voice
Many youngsters these days are learning foreign languages.
Paraphrased: Foreign languages are being learnt by many young people currently.
These are the various types of paraphrasing and sentence examples.  Hope this article helps in answering your doubts regarding paraphrasing and learn about how to paraphrase in ielts writing test.


Here is a small video explaining how to paraphrase in IELTS writing with examples.



0 responses on "How to Paraphrase in IELTS writing"

Leave a Message

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Copyright © 2018. All Rights are reserved
error: Content is protected !!