Synthesizing Ideas & Information
The purpose of this assignment is to help me take the important step of reorganizing my research notes before I try to come up with a thesis statement and begin writing my argument. Taking this step will help me differentiate between what I want to say to my academic audience and what I can say credibly to my academic audience.
At some point in their research projects, academics change tactics from collecting information to synthesizing that information. Synthesizing information is different than just collecting because it involves more critical thinking about what the research means and what the academic can say about their research.
A useful strategy academics use to begin synthesizing information before they begin writing their final papers is to create annotated bibliographies. A little later on I’ll create a formal version of an annotated bibliography because it’s something I should know how to do and will probably be required to do in other classes.
But for this assignment I will create a less formal version of an annotated bibliography using a PowerPoint presentation. Instead of just organizing my information by source, I will take the important step of organizing my information and sources by claims that I want or need to make in my researched argument.
My PowerPoint presentation should do the following:
1. Identify and briefly describe the issue I am researching
2. Identify 4-5 main points or claims I could, need, or want to make about the issue
3. Quote evidence from at least two sources to support each main point or claim
4. Explain briefly how/why the information or idea quoted helps support the main point or claim
5. A two-paragraph reflection that considers how well my research so far avoids binary thinking
the template for this assignment that I should use to complete it, is in file (Synthesizing Ideas & Information)
• provide transitions to move from one point to the next.
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