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Synthesis Paper - University Education

            For class, I was required to read six essays, each centered on the topic of university education, map out their key points, find how the essays connect under the conversation of university education, and how they differ. For my map, I chose to do a simple colored bubble chart with lines connecting each essay to their main points, with overlapping ideas being connected to in the center of the map. Color coding the bubbles makes the bubbles of each essay easily identifiable. My map is simple, easy, and makes the most sense to me. I found many broad similarities among ideas in each essay, such as the concepts of academic writing, and the demand for scrutiny of university funding and instruction, especially the idea of promoting active/free thinking, and found even more specific differences between the essays' ideas.
             After first reading each of the six essays, I struggled in finding many similarities between them. Then, after rereading and analyzing the essays, I found many similarities that connect the main ideas of each essay in one way or another. I found that certain essays connected with each other more than others. For example, the camps of "Inventing the University" and "What is Academic Writing?" overlap on the concept of university writing. While "Inventing the University" focuses more on the grammar, punctuality, and vocabulary knowledge, and "What is Academic Writing?" focuses more on the content, debunking common writing misconceptions, and preparation, they come together hand-in-hand in discussing university writing. Both essays also stress the importance of how we communicate our message to our audience in writing is key.
             Another instance is with "Research and the Bottom Line" and "Are Colleges Worth the Price of Admission?" They both overlap on the concepts of the university's need for scrutiny of funding, and that the modern university is losing track of one of its primary priorities: teaching students.

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