How to write a Synthesis Paper assignment for college academic level - Essay Prowess

How to write a Synthesis Paper assignment for college academic level

How to write a Synthesis Paper assignment for college academic level

  

Synthesis Paper

A synthesis is a type of literature review in which you weigh the evidence and reach a single overall conclusion to answer your EBP question.  To do this you must (1) appraise each study (source of evidence) separately that you are referencing and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of that evidence.  In that appraisal, make sure that you include pertinent details about the study (instruments used, analysis, findings) as well as the overall findings as they apply to your EBP question.  If there are additional findings, that don’t apply to your question, it is not necessary to include those findings. Then you must (2) compare and contrast the evidence across sources [or, “synthesize” the evidence] (e.g., “Five studies concluded that this intervention was beneficial.  One study did not support this conclusion because _____.  Possible reasons for this discrepancy include ____.”). 

In your discussion and overall conclusion, it is important that you address gaps in the literature or any points of disagreement / discordance in findings across studies, and consider what might be contributing to those disparities.  Remember that this is a synthesis of evidence that you are considering for application to practice, so definitely include your judgment regarding that in your discussion.

The paper should be set up in the standard format for a scholarly paper with (at the minimum) the following sections (use these as section headings):

•        Title Page with your name and appropriate information (not included in 10 page limit)

•        Abstract (‘not included in 10-page limit). See APA manual for how to write an abstract.

•        Introduction (brief, includes why this topic is a problem/issue/or needs to be addressed along with your EBP question)  The introduction should be no longer than 1 page.

•        Methods Brief statements about the Search Strategies that you used [about 1 or 2 paragraphs].  Include the (at least 2) search engines and databases that you used, your search terms and any inclusion or exclusion criteria

•        Review of the literature (this is essentially your “findings”)

•        Discussion of your findings

•        Conclusion (Based on the evidence that you present, not your clinical experience or your opinion)

•        Your References, APA Format (not included in the 10-page limit)

•        Your Tables of Evidence and PRISMA flowchart [as an Appendix, not included in the 10-page limit) Remember that the table does not substitute for the review of the literature section.  You need to write a brief summary of each study in the review of the literature.

The length of your paper depends on the topic and the amount of literature that is available.  If your paper becomes long, please reevaluate and see if you could be more concise in your writing.  You should be able to do this in NO MORE THAN 10 PAGES, not counting a cover page or the reference list.  The paper must be in APA format, including a running head with your name and the page number in it. 

Note:  The focus of an evidence synthesis is quite different from a research proposal, so do not confuse the two.  Your purpose in this paper is to analyze and synthesize whatever evidence is out there to answer your EBP question.  Think of this as laying out the support for your planned practice.

          Also, do maintain an objective stance and voice in your presentation of the problem/question and in your critique and synthesis of the evidence.  And remember to use a professional writing style much like the various papers that you are reviewing and critiquing.

Criterion54321
AbstractSummarizes five components of paper: Clearly describes the (1) problem and its clinical significance. (2) States the purpose of the paper. (3) Identifies methodology used. (4) Summarizes the findings and (5) provides clinical implicationsIs missing or incompletely describes 1 of 4 components.  Is missing or incompletely describes 2 of 4 components.Is missing or incompletely describes 3 of 4 components.Is missing or incompletely describes all 4 components.
Introduction Paper is introduced with a clear statement of the EBP question.Introduces topic and purpose of the paper in a clear, concise, logical manner in 1 page or less. The importance of the clinical problem and gaps in knowledge are identified.   Introduces topic and purpose of the paper in a general manner; some lack of clarity or completeness. The importance of the problem or gaps in knowledge are not clearly identified.   Introduction is 1 page or less in length.Introduces topic in a limited and/or incomplete manner.      Introduction is 1 page or less in length.Introduction of the topic is incomplete or unclear.  Introduction is more than 1 page in length.No introduction or purpose of the paper is provided, or introduction is poorly organized or more than 1 page.   
PurposeIncludes the purpose of the paper along with the EBP questionPurpose of the paper is incompletely stated but the EBP question is includedThe purpose of the paper or the EBP question is missing EBP question and purpose are not stated. 
Methods are described clearly  At least 2 different search engines are used and named. Search terms are described. Inclusion and exclusion criteria are identified.At least 2 different search engines are used and named. Search terms are incompletely or not clearly stated. Inclusion and exclusion criteria are identified.At least 2 different search engines are used and named. Search terms are incompletely or not clearly stated. Inclusion and exclusion criteria are incompletely identified.One search engine is identified. Search terms are incompletely or not clearly stated. Inclusion and exclusion criteria are incompletely identified.No search engines are named. Search terms are not described. Inclusion and exclusion criteria are  not identified.
Paper discusses current literature to address the EBP question.Reviewed literature is of consistently high quality (reliable and valid) and from peer reviewed journals. Supporting studies are described thoroughly in 1 – 5 sentences (including population, findings, and limitations if applicable).  No major sources of evidence are omitted.    Reviewed literature is generally of high quality (reliable and valid) and from peer reviewed journals. Most supporting studies are described thoroughly (include population, findings, and limitations if applicable).Reviewed literature is not consistently of high quality (includes several review articles, limited amount of research or low level studies) but is generally from peer reviewed journals. Supporting studies are described but important elements of the study are missing (population, findings, and limitations if applicable).Reviewed literature is not of high quality (review articles, limited amount of research or low level studies) and not consistently from peer reviewed journals. Supporting studies are not thoroughly described (population, findings, & limitations if applicable).Reviewed literature is of poor quality (review articles, or poor quality research studies) and not from peer reviewed journals. Supporting studies are not sufficiently described (population, findings, & limitations if applicable).
AppraisalThere is an appraisal of each study’s strengths and limitation along with a ranking of the strength of the evidence  There is an appraisal of most of the studies strengths and limitation along with a ranking of the strength of the evidenceThere is an appraisal of most of the studies strengths and limitation but no ranking of evidenceFew of the studies are appraised and there is no ranking of the strength of the evidenceStudies are not appraised and there is no ranking of the strength of the evidence
Discussion demonstrates synthesis of the literature.Discussion compares and contrasts studies, pointing out important similarities and differences in samples, findings, methods, and individual study conclusions.  Also includes consideration of whether evidence is sufficient to support practice change. Ask yourself: If so – why? If not – – why not?Discussion compares and contrasts studies but incompletely notes important similarities and differences in findings, methods, and individual study conclusions.  Also includes whether evidence is sufficient to support practice change.Discussion incompletely compares and contrasts studies and fails to note important similarities and differences in findings, methods, and individual study conclusions.  Little consideration of applicability to practice.Discussion incompletely compares and contrasts studies and fails to note important similarities and differences in findings, methods, and individual study conclusions with more than one study.  Little consideration of applicability to practice.Discussion does not compare and contrast studies, note important similarities and differences in findings, methods, or individual study conclusions or is difficult to follow the train of thought of the author.  No consideration of applicability to practice.
Conclusion related to EBP question is drawn from the literature synthesis.Single clear conclusion related to the EBP question is drawn, and this conclusion is supported by the cited literature.    Single conclusion related to the EBP question is drawn. However, that conclusion is not completely supported by the cited literature.Conclusion is implied but not clearly stated, or it is not clear how the conclusion is supported by the cited literature. Conclusion not apparent or not stated, or the conclusion that is drawn is not consistent with the cited literature. No conclusion is drawn. 
Spelling, Grammar, FormatPaper has few spelling or grammatical errors, APA format is used for references and paper structurePaper has some spelling or grammatical errors, APA format is used for references and paper structurePaper has some spelling or grammatical errors, APA format is inconsistently used for references and paper structurePaper has multiple spelling or grammatical errors, APA format is inconsistently used for references and paper structure or there are multiple errorsPaper has multiple spelling or grammatical errors, APA format is not used for references and paper structure or there are multiple errors