Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

WRI 1100: Illanes

Synthesizing Video

"Synthesizing Information"

Reading Sources with a Critical Eye

Step 1: Preview the text

  • Read the title and headings
  • Read the first and last paragraphs
  • Read the first sentence of each paragraph
  • Study the visuals, if present

Step 2: Read the entire text

Step 3: Analyze the author's argument 

  • Find the author's main points
  • Find the evidence for these points
  • Notice similar ideas you've read in other sources
  • Notice any new arguments

--The Little Seagull Handbook, 83-86, 104-105

Synthesizing Sources and Ideas

Step 1: Comparing two or more sources

  • Write down common arguments, terms, or data
  • Write down disagreements among your sources
  • Determine how your sources affect your thinking on the topic
  • Decide if you need to do further research or investigation

Step 2: Moving from "What my sources say" to "What I say

  • Combine ideas from your sources with your own knowledge to formulate your thesis
  • Show readers how your source materials relate to one another and to your thesis
  • Decide whether you will quote, paraphrase, or summarize ideas from your sources
  • Enter confidently into the conversation around your topic!

--The Little Seagull Handbook, 105-107