Synthesis Essay - Structure and Formatting Guidelines for University Students

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Synthesis Essay - Structure and Formatting Guidelines for University Students
Post By tapaflcouk On 23, Aug

Got a synthesis essay assignment but didn’t know how to write it? Well, this article provides comprehensive information on the definition, types and top tips for synthesis essay writing, along with some structuring and formatting guidelines. So, read it till the end, and you will surely get some clues to draft your essay:

What is a Synthesis Essay?

One of the most interesting problems students often encounter is being vague about writing a synthesis essay. For a college or university student, this essay allows you to handle in-depth research, dissect complex ideas, and develop arguments more effectively. The perfect essay will gather concepts from many sources, condense them, and then incorporate them into a thesis statement, which expresses the stance that the synthesis essay is attempting to defend. Your ability to write in a coherent synthesis essay structure will depend on your ability to combine the different statements by exploring different aspects of a situation with some additional arguments.

What Is The Purpose Of Writing A Synthesis Essay?

Writing a synthesis essay simply means making insightful connections. Though why you need to build a connection between different concepts, theories, or ideas highly depends on your task requirements, but basically starting from the basic research is the common preliminary step in all. The reasons why the relationship between different pieces of information is important and if this relationship really exists are some common responsibilities of all synthesis essay writers. All in all, in order to write a perfect essay, conducting deep research, gathering information highlighting different aspects, and formulating new theories or concepts based on the relationship proved in the body of the essay are some ways to fulfil the purpose.

How Do You Write A Synthesis Essay?

Writing a synthesis essay is similar to writing any other kind of essay. It is a written exposition of concepts, as per the definition of a synthesis essay. They frequently cite two or more sources, including essays, novels, speeches, interviews, articles, lectures, or observations. In other words, you can identify the essence of what two ideas on the same subject are trying to say. You might, for instance, write a paper on how recreational drug usage has changed over time and another on the rise of teen drug abuse. You might formulate a combined thesis such as “The prevalent usage of recreational drugs is destroying teenagers”.

What Are The Different Types Of Synthesis Essays?

Keeping in mind the purpose of writing the synthesis essay, basically, two types of tasks can be done while remaining in the frame provided by its definition: explanatory synthesis essays and argumentative synthesis essays. Thus, the following is a brief description of both types.

Explanatory Synthesis Essay

This kind of essay aids readers in better comprehending a subject. Here, the objective is to explain a certain issue, not to make an argument. Explain the subject utilising sources in the body and describe these sources impartially. Just as in any writing project, provide two or more reliable references to support each point.

Argumentative Synthesis Essay:

This kind of essay aims to make an argument about a particular subject and support it with facts. In contrast to the explanatory style, you will proceed just as you would if writing a typical argumentative paper. Declare your position, provide supporting statements, and back up each claim with reliable evidence.

Also Read This: Most Interesting Argumentative Essay Topics That You Can Choose

How To Choose The Synthesis Essay Topics?

The topic for the synthesis essay must be debatable. You might need to pick a primary text based on your assignment’s requirements. Select a book that might present conflicting opinions. Here are a few tips on selecting an appropriate topic:

  • Look through the concepts and issues. To determine which topics pique your interest, read from sources and investigate a few in depth.
  • After deciding on a topic, gather pertinent and helpful sources to use in your synthesis essay.
  • Apply the concepts from the sources to your outline for the synthesis essay. You can write much more quickly and easily as a result.

Good synthesis essay topics are controversial and have been the subject of public discussion for a long time. It makes them emotionally sensitive to everyone concerned, and it also means that there will probably be a significant amount of evidence for them that is readily available.

What Is The Structure Of A Synthesis Essay?

Outlining can help you organise your thoughts and plan your work for your synthesis paper. Insert supporting data, counterarguments, and details in the relevant parts. Make sure that each element supports the assertion in your thesis. Any additional information will detract from your essay. To strengthen your paper, you should acknowledge any fact that contradicts your main thesis. Verify each of the sources you have chosen thoroughly. Do not summarise the causes while writing about them; instead, analyse them. A standard synthesis essay has the following structure:

  • Introduction
  • Main body
  • Conclusion


An introduction, which summarises the essay’s topic, comes first in a synthesis essay. It includes; an attention grabber, background information and justification for your issue and a thesis statement. A thesis, or the main contention of the essay, is a requirement for all synthesis writing. Your thesis should serve as the foundation for each thesis with independent sources.

Main Body

A refutation of your thesis must be presented in the opening paragraph. It displays your capacity for critical thought, which is highly regarded in colleges and universities. Make sure to point out that the counterargument is insufficient to refute your thesis. Give reasons to support the thesis in the ensuing paragraphs of your essay. Keep in mind to follow the below-mentioned synthesis format as you organise each paragraph in the body:

  • Topic Sentence
  • Supporting Arguments
  • Evidence
  • Evaluation of Evidence

Also Read This: An Essay Plan Example By The Academic Papers UK


A conclusion needs to be an overview of the entire essay. After that, an essay must end with some concluding sentence. In other words, summarising the key ideas and answering any remaining questions in light of the provided information are the main tasks to be completed in a synthesis essay.

Synthesis Essay Formatting Tips:

A proper study of a particular text or topic is essential when writing a synthesis paper. You must understand the text’s purpose, language, and author’s assertion to analyse it effectively. You are essentially responding to the query, “What about it?” After that, you must construct your central idea and structure your writing accordingly. Here are some tips for writing a flawless synthesis essay. Moreover, the formatting of an essay only demands you to follow a few simple tips, just like:

  • Keep the audience in mind and use appropriate language
  • Use exact language. Do not be embarrassed to use a dictionary
  • Keep your sentences simple. Do not use the passive voice
  • Check your work for typos, comma mistakes, subject-verb agreements, plurals, and possessives
  • Provide accurate citations
  • Use transition words to demonstrate a shift between the ideas
  • Keep the following benchmark in mark while writing a synthesis essay
  • Proper formulation of thesis statement about the chosen topic
  • Demonstration of a thorough comprehension of the sources and evidence
  • Synthesis of multiple perspectives to present a point of view
  • Capacity to develop coherent arguments
  • Convincing and compelling arguments
  • No sweeping generalisations and avoid using flowery language
  • Clarity, consistency, and coherence throughout the essay
  • No grammatical errors, spelling, and punctuation mistakes

Additionally, there are various tools and techniques that you can try right now to ensure good editing of your synthesis essay. Using proofreading and editing tools, picking all clarity, consistency, spelling, and grammatical mistakes is a matter of a few seconds. Moreover, by using different essay style guides, you can ensure uniformity in your content.


Writing a synthesis essay requires the ability to synthesise information and develop a coherent argument. The writer must define the position on the topic clearly and support it with corroborating evidence. It requires logical reasoning and the usage of transition words to demonstrate continuity between the ideas. If you are the one who is facing issues in writing this type of essay, just hire cheap essay writing services from The Academic Papers UK.

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