Synthesize is a process of putting something together, uniting something, making something out of different parts. If you stitched a quilt together from different scraps of cloth, or built a car out of parts from a junkyard, or made a whole report of two different sources of information, you would be synthesizing. In chemistry, synthesizing means putting together new molecules. The act of synthesizing is called synthesis.
If you want to create something new from a number of different already existing sources – you should synthesize. To synthesize information you should first examine and analyze relationships between sources and then make those relationships explicit.
Synthesis may also be explained as a process of combining information and ideas to create or develop a new idea, focus, or perspective.
The TOEFL iBt contain independent and integrated skill questions. Integrated questions demand from students the ability to synthesize. An appearance of new perspective, meaning or idea is a result synthesis.
Synthesizing skills will be needed on the writing and speaking sections of the TOEFL. The example of the task involving synthesizing abilities:
on the integrated writing question, you will be given a short passage to read, a short lecture to listen and then write your response. You will compare, contrast and give your view on a given topic. Sometimes students are not asked to give their own opinion, so be attentive while reading the task. In the speaking section, you may listen to two parties discussing a topic and then be asked to synthesize and add your opinion. Again, be careful about the task you are asked to do and do not give your own opinion when it is not needed.
Before the test find and study books on how to make a correct synthesis. Do exercises and ask somebody to check your test impartially. Checking your synthesizing abilities will help you to pay more attention to this topic if you are not good at and to be confident if everything is ok.