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This gives your synthesis a purpose, and even a thesis of sorts.Because each discipline has specific rules and expectations, you should consult your professor or a guide book for that specific discipline if you are asked to write a review of the literature and aren't sure how to do it. It may involve analysis, as well, along with classification, and division as you work on your organization.In the previous example, the student might notice that no two colleges seem to agree on what constitutes "co-curricular," and decide to research this question in more depth, perhaps examining trends in higher education and offering an argument about what this newest trend seems to reveal.
(1) It accurately reports information from the sources using different phrases and sentences; (2) It is organized in such a way that readers can immediately see where the information from the sources overlap;.
(3) It makes sense of the sources and helps the reader understand them in greater depth.
The Whenever you report to a friend the things several other friends have said about a film or CD you engage in synthesis.
People synthesize information naturally to help other see the connections between things they learn; for example, you have probably stored up a mental data bank of the various things you've heard about particular professors.
Your primary purpose is to show readers that you are familiar with the field and are thus qualified to offer your own opinions.
But your larger purpose is to show that in spite of all this wonderful research, no one has addressed the problem in the way that you intend to in your paper.In many upper level social sciences classes you may be asked to begin research papers with a synthesis of the sources.This part of the paper which may be one paragraph or several pages depending on the length of the paper--is similar to the background synthesis.If your data bank contains several negative comments, you might synthesize that information and use it to help you decide not to take a class from that particular professor.Synthesis is related to but not the same as classification, division, or comparison and contrast.In a background synthesis of Internet information that could help prospective students select a college, for example, one paragraph might discuss residential life and synthesize brief descriptions of the kinds of things students might find out about living on campus (cited of course), another might discuss the academic program, again synthesizing information from the web sites of several colleges, while a third might synthesize information about co-curricular activities.The completed paper would be a wonderful introduction to internet college searching." The answer to that question forms the thesis of the resulting paper, but it may not be a particularly controversial thesis.There may be some debate about what background information is required, or about why, but in most cases the papers will still seem more like a report than an argument.The background synthesis requires that you bring together background information on a topic and organize it by topic rather than by source.Instructors often assign background syntheses at the early stages of the research process, before students have developed a thesis--and they can be helpful to students conducting large research projects even if they are not assigned.