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Synthesis Essay Outline

Synthesis Essay Outline

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To write a synthesis essay, you’ll need to gather data from different sources and then create new content. It’s an academic assignment which teachers give to students to test their skills and knowledge on a specific issue. Here, you’ll find different sources of information, and it’s essential to pick the most relevant secondary/primary sources that are up-to-date and credible.

So, to write such a paper, you’ll need to do extensive research on the specified topic, and have multiple approaches to explaining a concept from different sources. Next, you’ll need to mix them to create convective pieces of writing. The goal of such an essay is to capture your reader’s attention regardless of the field or topic that’s on for discussion.

Writing a Synthesis Essay Outline

As a student, you should understand the point-by-point structure of writing a synthesis paper outline. It’s similar to having a table of contents and contains the subcategories and categories of any given topic. Your essay organization will, therefore, take this shape:

  1. It should have an Introduction with a thesis and hook statement
  2. You’ll need to discuss a single issue and offer two or more informational sources
  3. Another point of view supported by at least two sources
  4. An optional category with one or several points each mentioned in a separate paragraph
  5. A conclusion where you restate the thesis, and a strong concluding sentence.

Organizing Your Paper to Look Like These Synthesis Essay Outline Examples

If you refer to only one source, your presentation will end up being weak. It’s all about analyzing, bringing together, comparing and contrasting different sources. So, it’s wise to write several paragraphs before arriving at a conclusion where you’ll synthesize all these points. To further help you understand the process, here are simple synthesis essay outline examples.

Example 1: Consequences of High School Football on Student Scores

Your Synthesis Essay Outline Introduction

It’s good to start by mentioning your sources elaborately as it shows your audience the basis of your research. It’s one of the most crucial parts of any synthesis essay because you have to hook the reader and compel him or her to keep on reading. Most importantly, you should come up with an attractive thesis statement. Take a look at these two examples:

  1. (Wrong) “Local high school sports activities like football are harmful to students.” This is an inaccurate statement as it does not mention the exact cause of harm. Instead, it should sound a little bit more like this:
  2. (Correct) “There is a significant correlation between low high school grades and taking part in local sporting activities like joining the football team.”

A Simple Main Body of Your Outline for Synthesis Essay

In this section of your synthesis essay outline, mention your first idea, and show how it’s related to the subject.

For example, “Those joining the high school football team often show a constant drop in their academic performance every semester.”

Another point is the fact that high school footballers initiate bullying. Eventually, this affects the behavior and performance of their victims. Also, the pressure to perform well on the field changes the academic focus and concentration of team members.

Make sure you arrange your ideas from the weakest to the strongest, using transition words to separate each point and relevant resources for each.

Suitable examples include “Nowhere to run: consequences of high school football,” by Robert Wayne and “The impact of high school football on students,” by John Legman.

Sadly, a good number of students often rush through the main body to finish their assignments. If you do this too, the results are:

  • Poorly researched and insufficient content
  • Weak essay structure with few to no transition phrases
  • Including irrelevant sources to explain your different points of view

Concluding Your Synthesis Essay Outline

For a detailed understanding of synthesis paper outline conclusion, look at this example:

“Using information from John Legman’s book on the effects of high school football on the lives of students, and Robert Wayne’s findings on the impact of the same sport, this essay shows that this sport causes a significant drop in the performance of students. However, football is not the primary cause as there’s no sufficient information to make a final decision.

“Among other causes, these experts name other possible factors such as depression, stress, family conflict, and boyfriend to girlfriend disagreements. What do you feel causes the main drop in student performances?”

Mistakes which most students make here:

  • Writing an inconclusive summary
  • Forgetting to leave a call-to-action!

Example 2: Causes and Effects of Deforestation on Global Climate Change

Here’s an example of an explanatory outline for synthesis essay. Just like any other paper, it should have three sections: The introduction, main body, and conclusion. The tutorial below will guide you in understanding this concept properly:

Introduction to Your Synthesis Essay Outline

To give your paper any chance of surviving the rather harsh criticism of your readers, give them a reason to keep on reading it. While this may sound quite complicated, you could always start by using strong hook sentences. Some easy ideas include:

  • Using literary quotes from famous people
  • Anecdote/joke
  • Use statistics or facts
  • Simile/Allegory/Metaphor
  • You could also start with a rhetorical question

So, in connection with the issue in question, your introduction should start with something like this:

“Deforestation is the complete clearing of forests to create land for farming, or other uses. Reports from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAQ) show interesting findings. Shockingly, close to 18 million acres of forests, which is about the size of a country like Panama, are cut down each year!”

Avoid writing a ‘boring’ introduction, for example, “Deforestation is the cutting down of trees for use. Every year, a lot of forests in the world have been cleared.”

How about your thesis statement? Well, it should strengthen your introduction and create a proper foundation for your essay. Here’s a good example:

“Deforestation is one of the largest contributing factors to climatic change in the world today. Findings by Michael Daley, a professor of environmental science at Massachusetts’ Lasell College, show that the key problem caused by mass clearing of forests is that it causes a global change in the carbon cycle.”

Your thesis shouldn’t sound general or weak. Instead, it needs to look like a probing question which the writer tries to defend or answer in the essay. Unfortunately, failing to stress the importance of the subject and not focusing on one existing opinion on the issue are two critical mistakes which many students make.

The Main Body of Your Synthesis Essay Outline Template

There are some crucial factors that you’ll need to remember before you start writing this section of your synthesis paper outline. These are:

  • The length – Unless stated otherwise, your essays should have at least five paragraphs
  • Use of transition words – They show the reader once you’ve moved on to a different point
  • Include a topic sentence – It’s useful in building on your thesis statement

Once you’ve understood these vital points, look for the right material, and arrange your supporting ideas in separate paragraphs. The template below will help you master the concept better. Take a look!

  • Paragraph 1

Mention the causes of deforestation and how they’ve led to the unpredictable climatic changes. Suitable examples include clearing forests for urbanization and housing or harvesting timber to make commercial items like furniture, paper, and homes.

  • Paragraph 2

Explain why forests are a vital part of our ecosystem and how their destruction sets off a destructive chain of climatic events across the world. Remember to give pieces of evidence that support this point.

  • Paragraph 3

The Global Forest Resources Assessment of 2010 states that deforestation releases carbon of close to one billion tons into the atmosphere each year.

  • Paragraph 4

According to the National Academy of Sciences Journal, deforestation decreases the global flow of vapor from land by nearly 4%. Here, you’ll need to explain why even such a slight change ends up disrupting weather patterns.

  • Paragraph 4

Explain why the last 20 years have been the hottest, provide evidence and state the relevance of this point in strengthening your thesis statement.

  • Paragraph 5

Mention the effects of greenhouse gases in causing climate changes in the world today. Provide sufficient resources to show the relevance of this topic sentence, and how it supports your thesis.

The main body is arguably the most crucial part of an essay. It contains the bulk of your content plus it’s where your readers concentrate on mostly.

In this case, some of the errors you’ll need to avoid, include:

  • Writing a weak or irrelevant topic sentence
  • Not using transition words
  • A short main body which does not fully expound on the thesis statement

Your Synthesis Essay Outline Conclusion

This is the final section of your synthesis essay, and it summarizes all the points in your main body. It should also restate the main idea of your thesis statement, and then end with a call to action, for instance, “how we can work together in protecting the state of our forests to prevent adverse climate changes.”

Keep in mind that, by not including such an open discussion, you may never get the feedback you need from your readers.

All in all, always try to avoid mistakes such as:

  • Summarizing only a few points in your main body
  • Writing a weak call to action that does not compel your audience to develop their point of view!

Conclusion

Learning how to write a good synthesis essay requires extensive research on the topic in question. Does it sound a bit difficult? Well, by coming up with a detailed synthesis essay outline, you’ll have an easier time in organizing your ideas. Hopefully, these two synthesis essay outline templates will give you a good starting point.

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