What is a Synthesis Essay?

If we speak about the term ‘synthesis’ it means the act of combining elements to construct something new. Coming to a synthesis essay, it is a written thesis or discussion built using the support from various sources. 

When writing a synthesis essay, it is necessary to analyze a plenitude of sources and recognize the link that they hold to the thesis. In simple words, you will select a topic, declare or affirm solemnly a claim, choose and compound together sources, and build an efficacious essay.

Several steps go into penning down a synthesis essay. In the section ahead, you will learn about the 10 steps to write down a synthesis essay capable enough of producing the required result.

10 Steps that you need to write a Synthesis Essay

Step 1. Understanding the Topic

As a first step, you require thinking about the topic that you have chosen or been provided with. The better you understand what has been asked in the topic, the easier it will be to go on with the next steps.

Step 2. Write down a Provisional Thesis

Next, you will write down a provisional thesis based on your claim for the topic. This provisional thesis will represent the first ideas that would have come in your mind to help you kick-start the research portion. Please note that based on the sources that you will choose next, this provisional thesis can be altered and modified to reflect supportive ideas provided by the selected sources.

Step 3. Select Sources

Now, you require conducting a bit of research to identify a certain number of sources that, according to you, will thoroughly support your claim regarding the topic that you have written down in the provisional thesis. You may find a good number of sources; however, not all of them will support your claim. Hence, make sure you make the appropriate selection.

Step 4. Rigorous Reading

After you have chosen the sources, you require doing a close reading. In this step, you will highlight or take some notes, based on the chosen sources, which will assist you in summarizing the primary ideas and help you link them to the claim that you have made in the topic.

Synthesis Essay

Step 5. Documenting the sources

In this step, you will document each source that you have selected along with their authors. If you are going to quote, paraphrase, or summarize a source in your thesis, you will need this to give citations so as to avoid plagiarism.

Step 6. Evaluating Sources

In this step, you will utilize the primary ideas that you have summarized in Step 4 and assessor evaluate them. This will help you to justify or vindicate the ideas to be used as sources for the claim that you have made in the topic.

Step 7. Aligning the information with the provisional thesis

Now, it is time to reflect on all the information that you have gathered in the above steps and align the same along with the ideas and the interpretations with the provisional thesis that you have prepared in the second step. This step is extremely important as it will help you in drafting the final thesis for your synthesis essay.

Step 8. Writing down the final thesis

All of the steps before Step 8 can be hailed as pre-writing steps i.e. the steps that you require following before venturing on the task to write the final thesis. Now, since you have all the information, ideas, interpretations, and you have aligned the same in accordance with your provisional thesis; you are all set to pen down the final thesis for your synthesis essay

Please make sure that you include an initial one-sentence affirmation in your final thesis that stresses on the what, how, and the why portions of the topic.

Step 9. Formatting

Of course, formatting is an essential part of writing down any kind of essay. Without proper formatting, your essay won’t be readable and the audience is most likely to ignore it. When formatting your synthesis essay, make sure you divide it into three parts viz introduction, body, and conclusion.

The introduction will provide the readers with a general summary of the topic and the thesis that you have prepared and thrown some light on the chosen sources.

In the body, you will share the information that you have gathered based on the chosen sources. You have to compare the ideas delivered by the chosen sources and tell the readers as to how these ideas are in support of the chosen topic.

In conclusion, you will simply connect the different ideas to your thesis and tell the readers as to how each idea stands in support of the viewpoint that you have chosen to draft the thesis on.

Step 10. Submitting your synthesis essay

That’s it! The final step is to submit the synthesis essay that you have prepared.


These were the 10 steps that you need to follow to write an efficacious synthesis essay. If you have any further questions on the topic, please reach out to us via the comments section provided below.

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