Synthesis Essay - Writing Guide With Examples
A synthesis essay is a type of essay where you compose or combine several elements or parts to form a whole. In high school and college, it is one of the most common types of essay assignments.
This type of essay requires you to do a profound research and collect data from one or more sources and then combine them together.
This blog will guide you to write a synthesis essay, along with some amazing topics and examples. After reading this guide you’ll be able to choose an effective topic, assert a strong claim, collect and combine data, and then create a well-written and original essay.
Give this complete synthesis essay writing guide a quick read.
What is a Synthesis Essay?
According to the synthesis essay definition,
“It is an essay that takes a stance on a particular topic and then backs it up by combining the data collected from multiple sources. It is a combination and fusion of different sources that have a common point of view and shape a common claim through it.”
The writer chooses a viewpoint and presents a claim and its supporting evidence to prove it. For these types of essays, you need to collect ideas and points that support your essay topic and your argument.
It draws upon sources like articles, essays, reviews, fiction, lectures, interviews, research papers, and observations. The students utilize them to collect supporting claims for their research topic.
The essay writing process is consist of four major components
- Combining data from different sources
- Presenting a claim
- Crafting the essay
- Talking with the text
Types of Synthesis Essay
There are two types of a synthesis essay:
- 1. The Explanatory Synthesis
- 2. The Argumentative Synthesis
An explanatory synthesis explains a term so that the reader can understand it easily. An explanatory or background synthesis helps the readers understand a specific topic. It includes careful reading and presentation of the facts and information.
Explanatory Synthesis Essay Sample
Just as the explanatory essay focuses on presenting and explaining a topic from an impartial viewpoint. Argumentative synthesis supports a specific argument or claim and presents it in a rational manner.
The argumentative synthesis paper presents a strong thesis statement that is arguable and debatable as well.
To support the claim, the writer adds relevant information, data, and sources to back its topic and present it in a logical flow.
Argumentative Synthesis Essay Sample
What is an AP Lang Synthesis Essay?
An AP Lang, Advanced Placement Language, is a college-level rhetoric and writing curriculum course. The purpose of assigning such essays is to test and analyze the students’ writing abilities, language command, and understanding capabilities.
For writing this essay, students are given multiple sources to analyze. They are asked to form a claim or argument about the given topic and formulate an effective essay on it.
AP Lang Synthesis Essay Sample
How to Write a Synthesis Essay?
Since it is a specialized form of writing, there are few techniques through which you can nail this essay. These techniques will help you avoid common errors and mistakes.
Compile the Data
Probably the simplest technique of all, it involves compiling and explaining your most relevant sources and summarizing them. It does not include any of your original thoughts or views and is solely based on summarizing the sources.
Examples and Visuals
Claims and viewpoints are best explained through visuals. You can add quotes or examples from other sources as well as your own original experiences. Visuals like graphs, charts, and real-life events and photos can be added to create a lasting impact.
Presenting Two or More Supporting Reasons
In this technique, you put your claim forward and support your thesis by giving relevant reasons. You prove the statement true by presenting multiple reasons and evidence.
Straw man Technique
Ever saw someone putting the opposing views in their discussion? This is called the straw man technique.
You put the opposing views or evidence first and then present the reasons why you do not support that claim. It shows your knowledge of the other side of the story and the reasons you are refuting it.
The concession technique accepts the valid point of opposition but argues and proves that your point of view has more positive points than the other. The technique is particularly helpful when the audience is of opposing views.
Comparison and Contrast Technique
Here you present both the comparing and contrasting views simultaneously while analyzing the similarities and differences between the two. By this technique, you could study the topic as a whole, which may not be possible when working through other techniques.
How to Write a Synthesis Essay for AP Lang?
Writing a synthesis essay is an essential part of the AP Lang exam and students have to showcase their skills through it.
The following steps are involved in writing an AP Lang synthesis essay:
- Reading the sources closely
- Analyzing the text thoroughly
- Establishing a point of view based on it
- Concluding the entire essay
- Use APA or Chicago style to cite your sources
Synthesis Essay Outline
The synthesis essay outline generally consists of the following components.
Synthesis Essay Introduction
Start your essay with an interesting and engaging opening. The start is the most important part of your essay.
If you do not want your readers to leave your essay in the middle, make sure that the opening is strong. Explain and elaborate on the main topic and present the thesis statement.
Synthesis Essay Body Paragraphs
You can add as many supporting points as you want, but make sure that each paragraph starts with an argument, or claim, backed with specific evidence. The paragraphs should follow your ideas and claims, rather than moving around the source materials.
Synthesis Essay Conclusion
Just like a strong opening, a strong and memorable closing is important to conclude your essay. Instead of just adding anything vaguely and without any connection, it is better to add the statement of your essay and your reasons for supporting them.
Synthesis Essay Examples
Here we have provided some amazing synthesis essay examples to help you know the synthesis essay format.
Synthesis Essay Example for Student
Synthesis Essay Topics
Some prominent topic ideas for your essay are:
- Social media and its impact on next generation
- Millennials are more interested in gaining experience than stability. Agreed?
- Plastic and its role in increasing global carbon footprint
- Global warming and its impact on floods
- Climate change is a global phenomenon.
- What role does the death penalty play in reviving or destroying the law and order?
- Sugary drinks and fast food are the topmost reasons for obesity in children.
- Having a higher education is better than being a college dropout.
- Perfume and body sprays are key players in increasing global warming
- Video games are increasing violent behavior in children.
Finding great and impactful synthesis essay topics may be difficult but a little hard work and a good brainstorming session will definitely do the trick.
Synthesis Essay Standards
Here are some essential standards for a synthesis essay:
- Use your sources to support your claims and point of view reasonably.
- Present original thoughts and ideas and prove the claims with substantial evidence.
- The paper should be logically and seamlessly organized. All the ideas must form a rapport in a way that guides the reader.
- All body paragraphs should have topic sentences that are the main points. Once the ideas are compiled, the paper should present the main ideas thoroughly.
- The paper should have an easy and precise words and the use of vocabulary should be careful and natural.
- Proofreading is key to a great synthesis essay. The paper should be crisp and clean from any grammar and spelling errors.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Is a synthesis essay argumentative?
A synthesis essay does present an argument however it is not a type of argumentative essay. Both have entirely different purposes and outlines.
Do you use quotes in a synthesis essay?
Quotes should only be used as short phrases or snippets so they don't get confusing for readers. When working with sources in your essay, it's important to keep the flow of written words and not disrupt any sentences.