Usually there is a synthesis essay format to follow.

Characteristics of a synthesis essay, steps in the process of writing one, outline, and rubric.

An additional sample synthesis essay question is provided here.

A synthesis essay is one that seeks to bring together information from several sources so that you can make better sense of the subject or better prove a thesis. It is an essay that should allow the reader to not only see what information is available but how the different sources overlap. It should be capable of allowing the reader to make better sense of the subject area than they would if they were to consider any one source in isolation. These essays can be difficult to write if you are not used to doing in depth research and reporting on what you have found. This is why our specialist synthesis essay writing service is here to help you.

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Synthesis Essay - Samples & Examples - College Essay Writing ...

Well, there is a difference between your opinion and your ideas on a particular topic. An opinion is more related to your own belief about certain issue. An idea is the viewpoint formed by the writer on the subject after checking and reading all the relevant material found during the research on such topics. For many students, writing a synthesis essay is an exercise through which the tutor evaluates the student’s observation and grasping power.

synthesis essay outline example  Source:

Every science student, at some point of time, must have come across this term call photosynthesis. At a higher level you might come across Photosynthesis essay or may be a thesis paper on that. Just make sure that you know the entire process. Photosynthesis as we understand is a practice by which all green plants and other organisms use the energy coming from light to convert carbon dioxide and water into sugar glucose. In this process, photosynthesis serves as the primary source of energy for literally all organisms. It is important to note that Oxygen is one of the most important byproduct of photosynthesis which is used by all living beings.


Take a look at the Wal-Mart essay on the following pages. It is a synthesis essay based on the Wal-Mart essays from the 6th edition of the WARAC. Read very carefully and take specific notice of how the author uses the sources to support the argument being made. Nowhere in the essay is there any one source essay being regurgitated or blindly repeated. The author is always showing you how to mix and match the information that has been read to support that author's particular view. You probably will disagree with the final conclusion, but you should at least recognize the elements used to build the argument.Many instructors expect or require that a research paper/synthesis essay show a refutation of a source. This is not required by either MLA or APA, but it is a good technique to know and use when appropriate.

One of the reasons why a refutation is often required is that it forces students to look beyond their comfort zone when doing the research. A good researcher should always be open to new ideas and where the evidence takes them in determining their conclusion. But, unfortunately, many writers have already decided their conclusion before they ever started even researching. By requiring them to have at least one opposing view in the essay, the instructor is trying to at least create the opportunity for a wider perspective on the issue.

Where a refutation is the most effective is if it can be used to answer an objection that most readers will have to your main arguments. For example, if you are going to argue for gun control, you should know that most readers are going to know that the 2nd amendment allows for gun ownership. You can conveniently ignore that fact and stick to only the evidence that supports your claim, but the readers will know that you are ignoring this point, and it will hurt your credibility.

A refutation, on the other hand could point out that most people don’t know or understand what the 2nd Amendment really says. After all, the 2nd Amendment really reads “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” So a case could be made that the 2nd Amendment really only provides for the right of gun ownership to people who are part of an official, regulated militia. Any restrictions on people who are NOT part of such a militia would not be against the 2nd Amendment.

Are all readers going to accept this analysis/reading of the meaning of the 2nd Amendment? Of course not, but since you have shown that you are aware of the issue and that you have come up with an interpretation/analysis, your credibility is stronger than someone who simply ignores the issue. And your case is even stronger if your refutation can be supported with a citation from one or more credible academic sources. (plus you are showing synthesis too!).
Always remember that academic writing prefers Paraphrases over Direct Quotations, and that ALL information from an outside source, whether quoted or paraphrased, MUST be cited.

Synthesis writing can be informational or persuasive. The primary difference is simply how you present the thesis and argument. Some instructors or writing situations will require a persuasive or informative focus, but that is specific to that situation, not to synthesis writing in general. You, as the writer, need to determine what your purpose is. If you want to argue a specific position or change, then use a persuasive format. If you want your audience to learn about the topic in general, then the informational approach is more appropriate.

The three main components of an essay (introduction, body paragraphs, conclusion) are obviously also used in a synthesis essay, but HOW they are used might be different from what you are used to doing.A synthesis essay should be organized so that others canunderstandthe sources and evaluate your comprehension of them and theirpresentationof specific data, themes, etc.
The following format works well: So, the synthesis essay is not a summary, and it is not a literary or rhetorical analysis of the six sources, but rather it is an Argument (or Persuasive) essay where the student takes a position and incorporates at least three of the six sources as Evidence.
Sample synthesis essay question, sample scoring guidelines, and seven model student responses. This page from AP Central also includes comments from the Chief Reader about the sample student essays and scoring commentary about each sample.