If you copy or repeat a passage or use the exact wording from a source: book, speech or document this is quoting. You might need to quote text of a formal definition or standard to ensure the exact meaning is made clear to your reader. Perhaps there is an exact turn of phrase that is particularly significant and cannot be conveyed by paraphrasing. Use quotation sparingly. You could try asking yourself the following questions:
If you are going to use a quotation then it is worth a comment. Tell the reader why you have chosen to use a particular quotation.
Example: George Orwell’s advice on grammar for writers is still relevant today,
“Never use the passive, when you can use the active.” (Orwell, 1946, p.169)
The Prime Minister introduced the government’s strategy to tackle obesity in these terms:
Our ambition is to be the first major nation to reverse the rising tide of obesity […] by ensuring that everyone is able to achieve and maintain a health weight. Our initial focus will be on children: by 202 we aim to reduce the proportion of overweight and obese children to 2000 levels. (Department of Health, 2008, p.2)