How To Write A Synthesis Essay

As a new writer asked to write a synthesis essay, it might seem like an uphill task. However, it all boils down to your understanding of the synthesis concept of writing. A synthesis essay is a written discussion on a unique viewpoint about a central idea.

You choose a topic, assert a claim, find sources, compile them, and use the information that you acquired to write the essay. Writing a synthesis essay requires you to possess the ability to digest given facts and present them in an orderly manner.

The article below breaks down the steps of how to write a synthesis essay. Read on!

Steps Of How To Write A Good Synthesis Essay

1. Understand The Concept Of The Essay

The main objective of a synthesis essay is to make meaningful connections between parts of a work. This is to present a claim that supports the topic at hand. When researching on your chosen topic, you will need to look for connections that form solid perspectives on your topic.

2. Choose Your Sources Carefully

Before you start writing, you need to take some time and gather all the sources. You will need to go through the sources and write a concise summary for each of them. Observe the evidence provided by others in support for or against the issue. After your reflection on the viable sources, you can go ahead and formulate your thesis.

3. Formulate A Thesis

Once you have done your own evaluation regarding the sources, the next step is to develop your thesis statement. The thesis is your opinion on the topic and the main idea presented in your essay. The statement needs to be brief and provide your own point of view on the topic at hand,

The thesis statement usually varies. Depending on your synthesis essay, your thesis can either be the opening statement of the essay or the last sentence on the introduction.

4. Draw The Outline Of Your Essay

Once your thesis is in place, you can brainstorm on how best to write your essay and aligning your arguments. Using the pre-writing method, you create a scratch synthesis essay outline, which is crucial in synthesis writing.

A scratch outline allows you to logically organize the multiple sources you have collected. From there, you can develop your own point of view, interpretation and analysis of the sources you can find different ways to organize the information collected depending on how best you can argue them.

Additionally, a scratch outline allows you to deviate from your intended plan. This is especially when you encounter new information and ideas from your source material that support your thesis further.

The Structure Of The Synthesis Essay

The synthesis essay essentially has three significant parts:

The Introduction

The introductory sentence should always have a hook. A hook ensures your readers are interested in your material. It needs to possess that engaging aspect. It should also captivate the reader. Afterwards, you can clarify the topic and finally proceed to present your thesis statement.

The Body

Always ensure that your paragraphs begin with a topic sentence. The topic sentence provides a claim that supports your thesis statement. Proceed to give your opinion and explanation on the topic sentence. Here, you can use your gathered sources to make a stance on your claim.


In conclusion, you can further state the significance your topic has in relation to the reasons and evidence you provided in the essay. Additionally, you can use the conclusion to provide a reflective thought or ending for your essay.

An example of how to write a synthesis essay

how to write a synthesis essay

The Do’s And Don’ts Of Synthesis Writing


  • Summarize the sources. Instead, provide a detailed analysis of each one of them.
  • Write your paragraphs around the sources. Instead, write them around your arguments.
  • Make vague or elusive statements


  • Tie and link the sources together
  • Make meaningful citations
  • Ensure you use a smooth transition between each topic
  • Elaborate on the critical ideas
  • Proofread your paper more than twice. This can be helpful in strengthening your arguments as well as improving your transitions between the paragraphs.
  • Always cite your source materials. Any paraphrased, cited or quoted material should have In-text citations and footnotes. 
  • Remember to title your essay. The title is a reflection of your perspective in your supporting arguments and thesis statement.

How many paragraphs is a synthesis essay?

The number of paragraphs for a synthesis essay should be about 5-6 paragraphs. One paragraph for the introduction, three to four paragraphs for the body and finally one paragraph for the conclusion.

What is a synthesis in writing?

Synthesis refers to a written discussion from one or more sources. Your ability to write syntheses depends on how you are able to refer to sources from articles, non-written materials, essays and fiction.

Why is synthesis important in writing?

Synthesis enables you to join several elements from different sources so as so to help make a clear point to the audience involved.

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