Synthesis Essay

A Comprehensive Guide On Writing Synthesis Essay


In the entire span of your academic career, you will probably come across different types of essays. The synthesis essay is most likely to be one of them. Now, many students have trouble presenting this type of paper due to various challenges. So, how do you ensure good grades in your synthesis essay paper? Well, having complete clarity on the process of preparing this essay may help. While the treatment of the synthesis essay is similar to that of argumentative essay, once you develop a better understanding of the writing process, you'll know the difference. Read on for more insights about the synthesis essay.

What is a synthesis essay?

Writing a synthesis essay requires you to process information and present it in an organized manner. This type of essay may resemble argumentative essays. There is one major difference here, though. While working on synthesis essays, your professors will provide the sources which you should use to substantiate your argument. From this synthesis essay definition, it may sound a little bit easier than an argumentative essay. But it requires a different approach and writing, which takes some time to get used to. Synthesis essays are all about maintaining a strong position and determining the relationships between your sources.

How to write a synthesis essay perfectly

  • Present a hard-hitting thesis statement 

Once you have read the resource materials, you will have to develop an opinion on your topic. Your thesis will be the main argument presented in the essay. It should involve the topic and state your perspective on that topic. It should be mentioned as a complete sentence. The thesis statement should be presented in the last sentence of the first paragraph. Take a leaf out of this example. Texting has had an adverse impact on the English language, as it has affected the vocabulary of the millennial generation.

  • Read through your source material again

Check your research materials carefully and find key quotes, ideas, statistics, and facts that support your thesis. As you find out more, you can write them down. You can use these throughout your essay. If you wish to oppose a claim by an opponent of your idea and to find loopholes in it, you should also check out some ideas that go against your thesis statement, and think of ways to disprove them. This is known as a refutation, concession, or rebuttal, which can make your argument strong if you do it well.

  • Write your first draft

You must write your paper by following the outline you have created. However, you can digress from the outline, if you find new ideas and details in your source material that align with your thesis. If you are writing the synthesis essay for the AP test, you won’t have time to write more than one draft. So, you must hurry up and make the most of it. Your essay should have an introductory section that comes with a proper thesis, body paragraphs to present the evidence that backs your thesis, and a conclusion that sums up your point of view.

  • Revise your essay

At this point, you need to think about strengthening arguments and improving transitions between paragraphs and points. You should make your argument as succinct and simple to follow as possible. You can read your essay out loud because that way, you are more likely to notice awkward sentences or incoherent arguments. You can ask someone else to proofread your paper. The adage “two heads are better than one” still makes sense, in this case. Ask a classmate or your professor what would they add or remove from the paper. Also, ask them to check whether your argument makes sense and is clearly supported by your sources or not.

  • Cite your research material

For most synthesis essay papers, this means using footnotes to cite material in the body of your essay and a bibliography of cited works at the end. Footnotes and in-text citations should be included for any paraphrased, quoted, or cited material. If you are writing this kind of essay for the AP test, you won’t be using a particular style of citing, but you’ll have to mention which source you used after you cite it.

Tips on AP language synthesis essay

There are specific criteria for scoring the synthesis essay for AP language and composition test. Unfortunately, the criteria are not available to the public until after the exams. However, the following are some quick tips that will help you present your paper efficiently in the AP test.

  • Offer useful context on the topic
  • Present a sense of why the topic is important
  • Explore the complexity of the subject
  • Offer a precise and thoughtful analysis of paraphrases, quotations, etc.
  • Synthesize source material by establishing connections with your own ideas and opinions
  • Properly attribute ideas to sources
  • Wind up the paper with more than just a summary by emphasizing on the “so what?” question

Create a detailed synthesis essay outline

Presented below is the elaborate synthesis essay structure that you must follow if you’re wondering how to start and present a synthesis essay.

  1. Introductory paragraph
  • Offer background details and context on the topic of your essay.
  • Briefly elaborate on the sources that you’ll be incorporating.
  • Present your thesis statement at the end of the paragraph.
  1. Body Paragraphs
  • Begin with a topic sentence that agrees with your thesis statement.
  • Cite one or more sources that are relevant to your topic sentence.
  • Present your opinion and analysis on the ideas you have just cited from your sources. 
  • Write a transition sentence to guide the reader logically toward the ideas you will present in the topic sentence of the next paragraph.
  1. Concluding section
  • Rephrase your thesis statement in a new and interesting way.
  • Bring them all together by briefly summarizing your main points.
  • Address the “so what?” question by elucidating on why your argument is valid and what its implications could be. Try broadening your scope in order to highlight the reader how it aligns with the “big picture.”

Select proper synthesis essay topics

The topic for the synthesis essay format must be broad enough for tying several related sources together, but not too broad as to bring widely disparate sources together. Some primary research may help you decide what to write about. For instance, rather than a broad topic of communication, you could focus on the effects texting has had on the English language.

If you've been assigned an essay help topic make sure you read the prompt thoroughly to understand the question. The following are some of the synthesis essay topics that you can work with.

  1. Is technology making people too detached? Present your opinion with valid arguments.
  2. Are standardized tests necessary to determine the learning abilities of the students?
  3. Is multiculturalism a utopian idea? State valid arguments.
  4. Should technological progress be regulated? If yes, then how?
  5. Is AI the way forward in education technology?
  6. Are new technologies being implemented in schools properly?
  7. Negative body image issues prove detrimental to mental health. Validate with proper arguments.
  8. Elaborate on the policy of expansionism of some of the Asian countries.
  9. Is there a line between truth and fiction?
  10. Does accessibility to distance education affect the number of on-campus college students?

Incredible synthesis essay example and sample

The following is a specimen of a synthesis essay question that you will find useful. Such synthesis essay question examples will provide some clarity on how to work on this type of essay. With all these insights about synthesis essays, you won't ever get stuck while preparing the paper. The detailed information about synthesis essay papers will come in handy every time you’re assigned such an essay.

Get optimum assistance on synthesis essays with

If you have been stuck while preparing a synthesis essay, then it's time you seek expert assistance to help you deal with it. In this case, essay writers are a great option to consider. The site has been garnering immense popularity among students for its efficient essay writing services.

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