Critical Synthesis Essay Sample

Published: 2022-11-16
Critical Synthesis Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Literature review
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 637 words
6 min read

The three articles explore different concepts. The article by Swales examines discourse communities and their relevance in different contexts. He asserts that a discourse community refers to a body of different people who strive to achieve a common goal in their pursuit. The discourse communities also have a mode of communication that helps in coordinating the various activities of the group. Additionally, it employs a participatory approach that primarily provides information and feedback about a different phenomenon (Swales, 1990). Saltz and Sommers, on the other hand, investigate the writing abilities of freshmen and the factors that make their writing difficult as they progress towards different levels of education in college. The article distinguishes the successful college writers from unsuccessful college writers. It, therefore, conducts a study on over four hundred students to establish the findings related to such concepts. Bartholomae also examines the writing abilities of students and the different challenges they encounter in their course of writing skills. The author, therefore, relates writing and the academic discourse community that the writers address. The paper, therefore, identifies the different relationships among the three articles by identifying the similarities and differences in assertions of the three articles.

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Swales examines the concept of community discourse and its different characteristics. It identifies s community discourse as an element that serves various functions within a community set up. On the other hand, Saltz and Sommers explore the writing abilities of freshmen as they join colleges (Sommers & Saltz, 2004). A close examination of the assertions made by Swales indicates that a discourse community may include institutions such as a school and its different elements. In such environments, various group members have different capabilities. Such an aspect relate to Saltza and Sommers investigation of students' abilities to write.

Additionally, the two articles depict a similarity since both aspects of discourse communities, and writing abilities have a goal to achieve. Such concepts are highlighted in Bartholomea's article, which points out on writing skills (Bartholomae, 1986). In discourse communities, the main aim of the groups is to ensure that the group achieves its set goal or objective. For example, in a school set up, the primary objective may be to improve the performance of students. Such goals are achieved through interlink of communication processes and a participatory approach. Saltz and Sommers relate to the mentioned aspects as the writing process of freshmen involve a set objective that they aim at fulfilling. The writing process involves a communication process since it has to involve an interaction between the students and the tutors.

The articles by Saltz and Sommers and Swales also depict similarities since both articles highlight a specific threshold that must be observed. The threshold determines the success and failure of the entities involved in different contexts. For example, a discourse community presents an environment that determines the success of a group. That may be through the achievement of the set goals. The factors that hinder a community discourse are some of the factors that may hinder the success of students in pursuit of better writing skills. For example, a lack of proper channels of communication and a collaborative approach may affect both aspects.

The texts have highlighted different ideas related to specific contexts. They have demonstrated relevance since they reflect regular encounters and happenings within social environments. The articles would be important in understanding the different concepts related to the writing abilities of students and their success in such endeavors. Additionally, the interrelationships depicted by the articles are important in understanding how several factors correlate within different environments.


Bartholomae, D. (1986). Inventing the university. Journal of Basic Writing, 5(1), 4-23.

Sommers, N., & Saltz, L. (2004). The novice as expert: Writing the freshman year. College Composition and Communication, 124-149.

Swales, J. (1990). The concept of Discource Community: Genre Analysis. English in Academic and Research Settings. Boston. Cambridge Print.

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