Home
Blog
How To Write A Synthesis Essay: Outline, Example, Writing Tips

How To Write A Synthesis Essay: Outline, Example, Writing Tips

Tutor Angela

When you are told to write a synthesis essay by your teacher, it may appear to be a mammoth task. Fear not! Our do my essay paper service writers are only a few clicks away. What is a synthesis paper anyway? The first step is to understand what the word synthesis means. To synthesize means to combine separate components of elements to make a connected whole. It is different from summarizing, comparing, or reviewing. College students of various fields of study often receive synthesis essays either as solitary assignments or as part of larger projects.

What Is a Synthesis Essay?

Now that you know what to synthesize is, you want to know what a synthesis essay is. A synthesis essay is often referred to as a written discussion of ideas. It involves gathering information from several sources then synthesizing it to corroborate with a thesis or question. A thesis is the central claim of your paper. You can come up with the thesis by identifying the purpose of the essay but more on that later.

Synthesis Essay Types

Many people identify two main types of synthesis essays, but this article will discuss three. They are:

  1. An Argumentative Synthesis Essay

You begin an argumentative synthesis essay from a strong thesis, stating a particular position on the topic of the paper. There are several possible reasons for writing an argumentative essay. They include:

  • To compare and contrast a topic or idea;
  • To argue a position;
  • To evaluate a text;
  • To explain cause and effect relationships.

The purpose will determine the approach taken to write the essay. It also determines how the information will be presented.

Once you have selected a side, stick to it. You may provide counterarguments, but they should be minimal and weaker than your main arguments. Try summarizing your ideas before writing so that you do not include too much information in the papers. Your readers want to read a synthesized project, not the actual work. By presenting the facts directly, you risk having the reader misinterpret it.

  1. An Explanatory or a Background Synthesis Essay

An explanatory synthesis paper is meant to help a student become an expert in a particular area. The writer obtains information from various sources. They then synthesize this information in an objective and comprehensive way. They can explore the available information and organize it into common themes. This analysis of the different viewpoints helps students and readers develop a deeper understanding of the topic.

  1. A Literature Review Synthesis Essay

This essay is commonly written by students of social sciences and medicine as part of larger projects. They comb through previous literature on a particular topic and outline the common themes. This analysis should help you define which issues have been well researched and which ones haven't. It will reveal aspects of an examined problem and will generally help to justify specific research.

Below is a list showing the verbs the author can use in the different types of synthesis essays:

Argumentative: affirms, confirms, disagrees, concedes, insists, rejects.

Explanatory: finds, verifies, states, suggests, reveals, claims.

Literature Review: advises, mentions, proposes, holds, predicts, speculates. 

The tone used in the explanatory and literature review synthesis papers is almost similar, and some verbs are interchangeable, depending on the context.

Synthesis Essay Topics

Often, teachers will provide you with a specific topic or a limited number of options to choose from for your essay. Less often, teachers will let you decide what you would like to write about.

Nevertheless, if you end up looking for worthy synthesis essay topic ideas on your own, here are a few tips that should help you make the right choice:

  • A topic has to be of interest to you (and your readers);
  • It shouldn’t be too general;
  • It has to be relevant;
  • It should be debatable and negotiable.

Now, let’s see some interesting synthesis essay topic examples.

Social Media Synthesis Essay Topics

  1. Do social media make us feel more lonely than connected?
  2. Do social networks threaten our privacy?
  3. How do social networks affect young child development?
  4. Can excessive use of social media influence one’s academic performance?
  5. Can social networks make us happier?
  6. How social networks changed our behavioral patterns?
  7. Can online communities give one a sense of belonging?
  8. How is social media shaping people’s shopping habits?
  9. What is the role of social networks in marketing and business?
  10. Does social media foster stereotyping?

Education Synthesis Essay Topics

  1. Should we make colleges free for everyone?
  2. Does technology help students learn?
  3. Should education become more personalized?
  4. Do standardized tests have any real benefits?
  5. Should higher education facilities pay their athletes?
  6. How can distant learning affect one’s academic performance and success?
  7. Is homeschooling better than going to school? Why?
  8. Does class size have any influence on students’ success?
  9. Should there be more technology in classrooms?
  10. Do strict dress codes in schools and colleges really help avoid distraction and ensure success?

Technology Synthesis Essay Topics

  1. Is there any real connection between real-life violence and video games?
  2. How does technology promote the culture of entertainment?
  3. Will drone delivery have more pros than traditional delivery?
  4. Does technology increase the gap between different social classes?
  5. What threats may artificial intelligence have?
  6. Should professional video game playing be considered a real sport?
  7. How does technology ensure business productivity?
  8. Are there any ways to ensure online security for all?
  9. Can robotics replace the human workforce?
  10. Are smart homes a good thing?

Society Synthesis Essay Topics

  1. Should the voting age be increased?
  2. Can stricter gun policies help minimize crime and violence cases?
  3. Can the death penalty be an effective crime prevention measure?
  4. Is there still sexism and gender inequality in modern societies?
  5. How can violent web content affect teens’ behavioral patterns?
  6. Should psychological support be available at every workplace?
  7. Is higher education still a must for employment?
  8. Have our societies become more careless?
  9. Does immigration have a negative impact on society?
  10. Are church communities still important?

Don't Know How To Write Your Synthesis Essay?

Just send us the requirements for your paper and get it done before the deadline.

Get Expert Help

How To Write A Synthesis Essay?

The format of the paper may vary depending on the type, but there are three main sections in every synthesis essay:

  1. The intro
  2. The body
  3. The conclusion

A good academic essay writer needs to follow the synthesis essay format and ensure that they present their ideas in a way the reader can easily follow. This section highlights how to start the essay and elaborates on the different sections.

How to Start a Synthesis Essay?

To begin your essay, gather all the necessary resources, whether they are documents, books, movies, or articles, and go through them. As you do, make summaries and take down notes of essential sections for citation purposes. Take those summaries and make judgments about them. Literally synthesize the information. Determine the relationships between topics such as:

  • Do they build on each other?
  • Are there any similarities? Any differences? Compare and contrast.
  • What can you infer from them? What new idea can you get from studying them?

Next, create an outline of the essay. Some writers recommend a 5-6 paragraph long outline. The first paragraph summarizes the introduction and formulates the thesis. Use three or four sections to note down your points or arguments. The last paragraph summarizes the conclusion. An outline will help you see your argument at a glance, and you will be able to see the flow of your thoughts in the essay.

Finally, make a first draft of the essay. Your introduction should be a summary of the general ideas in the piece. Start with a catchy opening line. It could be a quote that is not famous, but that contains useful insight. It could also be an anecdote or an interesting statistic. Your first line should hook the readers. Next, explain the topic briefly and the purpose of writing the synthesis essay.

How to Write a Synthesis Essay Thesis?

As was mentioned earlier, the thesis is the claim your synthesis paper is making. If your purpose is to argue against students wearing uniforms, your thesis should portray this. Some essays will not have a thesis, for example, literature reviews. Other essays will have a clearly stated thesis in the instructions. Others will require you to go through the resources and come up with your own unique take on things. Make your thesis thought-provoking to make your readers curious.

How to Write a Synthesis Paper Body?

The body presents your original ideas. It will contain a summarized version of the sources you were perusing. If it is an argumentative essay, it will present the arguments and counterarguments. As a rule of thumb, have each paragraph introducing its own theme. Don't put too much information into each paragraph. You get the themes by grouping together similar facts and features from the sources. If your synthesis essay has a thesis, try to address it using a topic sentence at the beginning of each paragraph.

Your ideas should flow, building on one another to assert the claim you made. Try not to introduce too many contradicting points against your thesis. You can add some, but they shouldn't be strong points. Even then raise counterarguments against them.

Use statements that show the relationships between different topics. Your paper doesn't just represent the information but takes it apart, revealing the bare-bones argument. Build a case for your thesis. If it's a literature review or an explanatory essay, analyze what the research and data have to say about it.

Writing a Synthesis Essay Conclusion?

It summarizes what you were talking about in the body. It should list the major themes covered in the essay. It should clarify on any important facts worth remembering. In conclusion, the author has room to interpret the facts and issues in the paper. They can also direct the readers on where they can go for further research if necessary.

Finally, a good essay writer has to give credit where it is due. You have to make sure that you have a reference list acknowledging all the sources you used. You may be tempted only to cite direct quotes, but the correct thing is to mention the ideas you use as well. Some colleges and universities prefer their students to use MLA in text citation. Others require APA format citation. Whichever your school calls for, do it so that you do not plagiarize other people's work.

Putting the Final Touches When Writing a Synthesis Essay

Some writers come up with the title after they have concluded the essay. They choose one that fits the thesis and what is discussed in the paper. Because this is a draft, you have to go through it and make any necessary edits. Proofread it and make sure that the ideas are flowing naturally from point to point or you can ask our admission essay service writers to do this insted of you. You can choose to present your ideas in any of the structures that shall be highlighted below.

Still Need Help With Your Synthesis Essay?

Don't hesitate and hire an expert who will get your synthesis essay written properly and on time.

Get My Paper Done

Synthesis Essay Structure

The synthesis essay structure refers to how the author presents the essay's ideas to the reader. In this guide, six structures shall be highlighted.

  • Climactic order – Here, you will present your arguments beginning with the least important or persuasive. The reasoning here is that the reader will remember the last argument more and therefore have them remember the most critical point. In essence, you save the best idea for last.
  • Chronological order – This cannot be used with argumentative essays, but it can apply to the other types of synthesis essays. You organize the thoughts so that they are in the order the ideas were presented. This can be particularly important if the ideas are building on each other. This order is also useful for explaining cause and effect.
  • Logical order – This is also especially useful if the ideas build upon each other. Mainly if the first ideas are less complicated than the latest and one needs to understand the former to get the latter. Similar to the chronologically ordered essay, this cannot apply to an argumentative essay.
  • Anticlimactic order - This is the opposite of the climactic order. You will order the ideas in descending order of importance. This can be particularly useful in an argumentative essay. It will allow you to start with the points that pack a punch first then move to the weaker ideas.
  • Problem/solution order – Just like the name suggests, you begin the essay by presenting the problem. The rest of the piece is spent giving solutions to the problem in whatever order you see fit.
  • Comparison and contrast order – Sometimes, synthesis essays, just like comparison and contrast essays, compare and contrast ideas. In such cases, this order is used. There are two main alternatives. You can summarize each source then shed light on the similarities and differences. Alternatively, you can present each idea block by block, discussing each completely as you go. You can move point by paint or maybe even back and forth.

Synthesis Essay Writing Tips

Here are ten tips from our help me do my paper experts to follow when writing a synthesis essay. Some of them have already been highlighted in the text but are worth repeating.

  1. Choose good sources.

You want to use sources with valuable information. The data must be valid and not have been proved wrong elsewhere. Don't be afraid to do extensive research. Read widely, then synthesize the information.

  1. Having an outline is vital.

You will get a basic idea of how to organize your thoughts by coming up with a synthesis essay outline. You will also know if you have enough points in your essay or if you need more. With an overview of the themes, you can organize them into whatever structure you feel is best.

  1. Write a compelling intro.

You need to hook your reader from the first line. Use any of the methods listed above to come up with an opening line that makes the reader want to read more. Make your thesis compelling too, and if you can tap into their emotions, even better.

  1. Address your readers correctly.

You want to use the third person in writing the essay. Speak/write with authority. 'I think that social media is a key contributor to students becoming antisocial' shows that you are not sure. 'Research reveals that more and more students are spending their time on social media rather than interacting with their peers' is more authoritative.

  1. Use precise vocabulary.

The goal of the essay is to convey the relationship between ideas and convince your readers of a particular conclusion. You do this by using precise vocabulary that creates vivid mental pictures. It also means avoiding wordiness. Avoid purple prose. Use as few words as possible to convey your message without sacrificing clarity.

  1. Use clear sentences and paragraph structure.

Sentences should neither be too long nor too short. Start your paragraph with a clear topic sentence. Elaborate on the theme at hand, then conclude. Avoid having sections that are too long as they discourage the reader. Simple sentences are better than complex sentences with multiple parts.

  1. Use sentence and paragraph transitions.

Each sentence and paragraph should effortlessly lead to the next. When writing an essay in climactic order, some possible transition words include, more importantly, still and even more, etc. In an essay written in chronological order, words like first, and then, afterward, and many more are good transition words for moving to new themes or points.  

  1. Proofread and edit.

You may have an excellently written synthesis essay, but it won't matter much if you haven't proofread your work. Unfortunately, people are not as patient as we would like them to be and may not want to look for your points hidden beneath grammatical errors and poorly written sentences. Sometimes it helps to read out the essay to see if it reads well. As a rule of thumb, some writers recommend setting it aside for a few hours or days after writing it before editing. This may not be possible if you are writing it at the last minute, but if you have time, follow this advice. The time will help you approach your work with more clarity.

  1. Use citations.

There is a reason people copyright their work. Plagiarism is generally frowned upon, and in some cases, it may be a criminal offense. To be safe, cite all your sources. Some resources can make this easier for you. There are phone applications that will scan the barcode of textbooks and generate a citation. There are websites in which a few minor details will yield a well-written citation. If all else fails, the built-in citation tool in some writing software like Microsoft Word will come in handy.

  1. Choose a good title.

Some people know the title when they are starting out, but others come up with it after writing the essay. Whatever your preference, make sure that just like your introduction, your title is compelling. It should inspire your reader's curiosity.

Synthesis Essay Example

Synthesis Essay Introduction Example

Now, let’s get to synthesis essay examples to help you handle the task well. The piece below is a sample synthesis essay introduction on the topic “Should higher education be free?”

The cost of attendance at colleges and universities has been gradually rising throughout many decades. The main reason for initially high tuition fees is probably the fact that many years ago, higher education was rather a privilege than a necessity. However, things have changed a lot since then. And, though absolutely free higher education still sounds like a utopia, the wealth of one’s family really shouldn’t pre-determine the future.

Synthesis Essay Thesis Example

If you are not sure where to start when writing a strong essay thesis, checking out some worthy examples of a synthesis essay can really help. So, here is a sample thesis about free college education:

In the US alone, the cost of higher education is rising by around 28% every year, leading to over 55% of students not being able to afford to go to college. If fees continue to rise, soon no one will be able to afford higher education, whereas free education can significantly support society, ensure equality, and lead to a more educated and productive workforce.

Synthesis Essay Body Paragraphs Example

Synthesis essay samples of body paragraphs can show you how to combine your ideas, facts, and statements into a whole, cohesive argument. Here is a sample for an essay on “Should higher education be free?”

Free higher education is the next step we need to take to improve our societies. More accessible education will lead to a larger number of well-educated people, who, in their turn, will be better versed in the history and current situation of their society and will have much stronger problem-solving skills. Besides, free higher education will lead to the right level of equality that will help minimize the gap between different social classes.

One more point “for” free college education for all is that it can boost students’ motivation and productivity. Having better perspectives on their future, regardless of their wealth or social status, will enable more people to enter the workforce for high-skilled jobs.

Example of Synthesis Essay Conclusion

Below is an example of synthesis essay conclusion on the topic “Should higher education be free?”

Over the past years, the cost of higher education has really gotten out of hand for many students out there. This leads to more people ending up living a life they didn’t want - at a hardworking or labor job market, working for peanuts, trying to make ends meet. This eventually leads to a greater gap between classes and a larger rate of poverty. To change this, we have to ensure that everyone has a choice and make higher education free and accessible for everyone.

To Sum Up

A synthesis essay is an in-depth analysis of various sources compiled into one document. The author asserts a claim then selects and combines information from multiple sources to prove it. Learning to write synthesis essays is a great skill that prepares you to deal with the current information overload. It teaches you to go through the available sources and then come to a logical conclusion. This skill is particularly useful in fields going through critical changes and upheavals of old ideas. If new ideas are being presented often, you will need to learn how to analyze them, interpret them, and come to a viable conclusion.

If writing a synthesis essay still seems too difficult for you, or you simply lack the time, contact our write an essay for me service and get the help you need!

Back to blog