How to Write a Synthesis Essay

How to Write a Synthesis Essay: Get Expert Help in Argumentative Synthesis

If you want to provide an outstandingly good synthesis paper but are not well-versed in how to write a synthesis essay, you should definitely start with synthesis essay definition. Many academic sources and academic professionals define synthesis essay differently but the core idea that unites all definitions is that a synthesis paper is the one that presents a strong standpoint on a specific topic and identifies relationships between the used sources.

When you get the assignment to write a synthesis paper, make sure that it is not only about summarizing the sources. What you actually have to do is to express your position and back up with evidence found in the sources. Make sure that you synthesize the sources, i.e. pinpoint to the connections between them and how they interrelate. There are also cases when more than one source has supporting information for both sides of the central claim. In such instances, it is recommended to re-read the sources once again and find which position they support in a stronger way. If you have come across the information in sources that contradicts your points, do not simply ignore it – provide some facts about it and further refute your argument (say why your exact position is clear).

How to Write a Synthesis Essay AP Lang

If you are wondering how to write a synthesis essay AP Lang, make sure to pay considerable attention to the synthesis essay format. With the steps provided below, you will get to know what is a synthesis paper and how to start a synthesis paper if you have an urgent assignment. These five simple steps, writing a surprisingly good synthesis essay is surprisingly easy.

  1. Read the sources carefully

Before putting forward your synthesis statement, make sure to rigorously explore ideas presented in your sources. To synthesize sources properly, you should read them closely and in detail. If you are wondering how to synthesize information, follow the tip: try to find common ideas among the sources and start to think how the ideas are adjacent to one another. Making such connections in your mind will help you formulate a synthesis argument. Depending on the topic of your paper, you might have numerous sources. For example, source 1 may be a table containing some statistics/ numerical data, etc.; source 2 may be a primary source/ historical document, whatsoever; source 3 may be some secondary source with another type of data, and so on.

  1. Come up with your own standpoint and express it clearly

After you have studies your sources, decide on your own position. A good thing to remember here is that you do not actually have to believe in your expressed position – it is far more important to be able to properly defend it and make it believable and convincing. For synthesis in writing, you need to be well-versed in supporting your argument strongly and effectively. Once you have put forward your position, make sure to adhere to it throughout the whole paper. You need to be consistent in your ideas from the beginning of your paper till its very end. You might, of course, add some points to support your position and make it clearer but you should never jump to another idea.

  1. Formulate a terrific synthesis essay thesis

As soon as you have come up with your position, include it into the thesis statement in a brief and succinct way. Make sure that the thesis clearly conveys your point. Moreover, regardless of whether you provide an explanatory synthesis essay or an informative synthesis essay, keep in mind that the further essay development should be tightly connected to the ideas expressed in the thesis.

  1. Prepare a synthesis essay outline

As soon as you have decided on your position, it’s high time to devise a detailed outline, where you will plan how you will structure and develop your paper. As you write the outline, write the thesis statement at the top of the paper. Afterwards, identify how many body paragraphs you will have and provide a topic sentence to each of them. Under each opening sentence, provide three supporting facts to back up your claim formulated in the topic sentence.

  1. Take a wise approach towards using your sources
  • Do not merely summarize the sources. Summarizing relates to description of what the source is about.
  • Analyze the sources instead. Demonstrate your critical and analytical thinking: show some connections between the sources, focus on the ideas that are conveyed, pinpoint to the importance of the sources.
  • Do not organize the paragraphs according to the sources and their ideas. Do not provide a source overview that takes up the whole paragraph. Such approach is wrong. Do not use more than two citations per paragraph as your essay will look like a literature review.
  • Organize your paragraph according to the arguments you put forward. Make sure to provide sub-arguments, highlight different perspectives of the arguments. Remember to support each of the, with sufficient evidence.

Get to the actual writing process

As soon as you have provided an extended outline and now have a clear picture of what to write about, start elaborating on the information provided in the plan.

Synthesis Essay Structure: Tips on Writing a Successful Paper

  1. To ensure that you have a proper synthesis essay structure, keep in mind the essay purpose throughout the whole writing process. Ask yourself what final result you plan to achieve? How can the overall purpose of writing the paper mold the way you analyze the sources?
  2. Make sure that the sources you have gathered correspond to the purpose of your writing. Do not even start to waste time on reading the sources that will hardly have any connection to the synthesis paper. Make sure that the sources contain information that will help you attain your purpose. In the process of reading, make sure to pay attention to details and highlight the core aspects that you plan to synthesize.
  3. Write down a thesis statement that communicates the main essay idea across. Preferably, the thesis should be formulated in a single well-developed sentence, where the topic and the statement are easy to infer. Sometimes, the thesis might be written as the very first sentence of the introduction but sometimes it can be the last one.
  4. Decide on how you will introduce the material derived from the selected sources and how you will take notes. Think of some note-taking strategies, such as brainstorming, free writing, table filling, etc.
  5. Come up with an organizational plan taking into account the central paper idea expressed in the thesis statement. Make sure you decide on a specific way of organization of ideas as the paper should be logical and consistent. After you have devised a plan, move on to providing the first draft, which is the second step in writing an argumentative essay after you have provided an extended outline.
  6. Make sure you start the paper with a good synthesis essay introduction. It should be brief and at the same time detailed enough to provide sufficient background information.
  7. Move on to elaborating body paragraphs. The first step in writing a synthesis paragraph is to provide a topic sentence, where you provide information what the paragraph will be about. Make sure all body paragraphs are more or less the same in length.
  8. Study carefully how to write a conclusion for a synthesis essay. It should briefly summarize the main ideas that you have analyzed in the paper. Restate your thesis in other words and indicate whether the thesis was proved or not.
  9. Document the sources properly according to the required style. Make sure you format all in-text citations and other referencing in a proper way. Double-check whether all ideas you have taken from the outside sources are properly documented.
  10. Edit and proofread your synthesis paper. If needed, revise it and brush it up so it looks perfect. Check carefully for grammar, punctuation, spelling, and content. When checking on the paper content, make sure there are no confusing statements that may distract readers’ attention or be an obstacle towards general understanding of the main idea. Make sure the essay is logically structured from the very first to the last paragraph.

Ways of Synthesis Essay Development

Summary. This one is the simplest techniques for synthesis paper development where you summarize the most appropriate sources with the most significant being summarized the last. One of the main drawbacks of this technique is that summary does not reveal much of your critical thinking and independent opinion.

Illustration or example. According to this technique, you refer to a specific example from one of the sources. One way of presenting it is to paraphrase in other words, sum it up or provide a direct quotation. Regardless of what way of presenting the source you use, make sure to document the source properly according to the required style.

Two or more reasons. This is one of the most effective ways of synthesis development. After you have formulated your thesis, you offer specific reasons with strong evidence of why your statement is true.

The Strawman technique. When you use this way of developing ideas, you provide an argument opposing your thesis statement. The advantage of this technique is that you pinpoint to the other side of the argument and do not deny it.

Comparison and contrast. You examine two sides in terms of one another. First you find similarities and then differences. With the help of this method, you can frequently notice such elements and nuances that you would have otherwise not noticed.

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