You can quote verbatim, iff
- the passage quoted is reasonably short (about one sentence, but not a whole paragraph);
- and you put the quoted passage in quotation marks and/or italic;
- and you give the reference immediately before or afterwards.
As John & Ali (2012) have phrased it "this is a verbatim quote from
However, having said that, you should avoid excessive verbatim quotations. Quoting verbatim is frowned upon and reflects poorly on your ability to express yourself. As stated in point 1 above, quoting a whole paragraph or even more is inappropriate in any case, because it implies that your text lacks originality. The same holds for near-verbatim quotes.