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How to Write a Strong Thesis Statement

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❶Know where to place a thesis statement.

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1. The Topic

Pick a topic that interests you. This must be the first step in writing your paper and your thesis statement because all direction of the paper will depend on what topic you are writing about. Unfortunately, you must ignore this step if the topic is decided for you. The goal of this step is to find a particular narrow subject in your topic which you can make an argument about. For example, take the topic of computers. There are many aspects of computers that can be expanded on such as hardware, software, and programming.

However, vague topics like these do not make good theses. But something more narrow, such as the effects of Steve Jobs on the modern computer industry, allows for a much clearer focus. Know the type, purpose, and audience of the paper.

These are usually assigned by the instructor, but even if you get to choose them, you must understand that these will affect your thesis statement considerably.

If you are writing a persuasive paper, your purpose will be to prove something to a specific group. If you are writing a descriptive paper, your purpose will be to describe something to a specific group.

Each of these must be expressed in your thesis somehow. Follow a rigid structure. Knowing the basic formulas will not only keep your thesis within the acceptable length but it will also help you see how your entire argument should be organized. Your thesis should contain two parts: A clear topic or subject matter A brief summary of what you will say Another way of looking at a thesis is as a formula, or a pattern, that comfortably holds your ideas: Because [reason s ], [something] [does something].

Although [opposing evidence], [reasons] show [Something] [does something]. The last example includes a counter-argument, which complicates the thesis but strengthens the argument. In fact, you should always be aware of all counter-arguments against your thesis. Write down your thesis.

You will be able to think about your thesis logically , clearly, and concisely. There are two schools of thought on thesis timing.

Some people say you should not write the paper without a thesis in mind and written down, even if you have to alter it slightly by the end. Do whatever seems best to you. Analyze your thesis statement once you think you have a final, or working, version. The point is to make sure you avoid making any mistakes that can weaken your thesis. To get a better idea of what to do and what to avoid, consider the following pointers: Never frame your thesis as a question.

A thesis is not a list. Keep it concise and brief. Never mention a new topic that you do not intend to discuss in the paper. Do not write in the first person. Using sentences such as, "I will show Do not be combative. The point of your paper is to convince someone of your position, not turn them off, and the best way to achieve that is to make them want to listen to you. Express an open-minded tone, finding common ground between different views. Realize that your thesis does not have to be absolute.

As you write your paper you may find that your opinion changes or that your direction has veered slightly. Your thesis statement should tell your reader what the paper is about and also help guide your writing and keep your argument focused. You should provide a thesis early in your essay -- in the introduction, or in longer essays in the second paragraph -- in order to establish your position and give your reader a sense of direction.

Your thesis statement should be as clear and specific as possible. Normally you will continue to refine your thesis as you revise your argument s , so your thesis will evolve and gain definition as you obtain a better sense of where your argument is taking you.

Your thesis should be limited to what can be accomplished in the specified number of pages. Shape your topic so that you can get straight to the "meat" of it. Being specific in your paper will be much more successful than writing about general things that do not say much.

The opposite of a focused, narrow, crisp thesis is a broad, sprawling, superficial thesis. Compare this original thesis too general with three possible revisions more focused, each presenting a different approach to the same topic:. Your thesis statement is no exception to your writing: By being as clear as possible in your thesis statement, you will make sure that your reader understands exactly what you mean.

These words tell the reader next to nothing if you do not carefully explain what you mean by them. Never assume that the meaning of a sentence is obvious.

To avoid misunderstandings, be as specific as possible. Compare the original thesis not specific and clear enough with the revised version much more specific and clear:. Do not expect to come up with a fully formulated thesis statement before you have finished writing the paper.

The thesis will inevitably change as you revise and develop your ideas—and that is ok! Start with a tentative thesis and revise as your paper develops. Avoid, avoid, avoid generic arguments and formula statements.

They work well to get a rough draft started, but will easily bore a reader. Keep revising until the thesis reflects your real ideas. Avoid formula and generic words. Search for concrete subjects and active verbs, revising as many "to be" verbs as possible. A few suggestions below show how specific word choice sharpens and clarifies your meaning. Use your own words in thesis statements; avoid quoting.

What is one thing about your topic that you believe to be true, and that you wish to argue? Is what you say always true always? Are there good reasons why your position may have a down side? How can you make your position have a reality check? What general reasons why your position may have problems can you admit up front? Although schools of over a thousand students have flourished in America. Write your qualification in the space below.

In general why do you believe your position to be correct in spite of your qualification? What is the over all good to be gained by agreeing with your position? This is a general statement; your specific reasons will follow in the body of your essay.


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Remember that the thesis statement is a kind of "mapping tool" that helps you organize your ideas, and it helps your reader follow your argument. In this body paragraph, after the Assertion, include any evidence–a quotation, statistic, data–that supports this first point.

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This handout describes what a thesis statement is, how thesis statements work in your writing, and how you can craft or refine one for your draft. Introduction Writing in college often takes the form of persuasion—convincing others that you have an interesting, logical point of view on the subject you are studying.

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In composition, a thesis statement (or controlling idea) is a sentence in an essay, report, research paper, or speech that identifies the main idea and/or central purpose of the text. In rhetoric, a claim is similar to a thesis. Thesis Statement Creator: Directions: This web page explains the different parts to a thesis statement and helps you create your own. You can click on the example button in each section to see an example of a thesis statement.

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Nov 17,  · I don't see this as a thesis statement (or sentence) in it's self. It, in no way, tells me what you intend to do with your thesis, however it does tell me the intent Ms. Wells had when she made the brokerstopaarmy.cf: Resolved. Thesis is mostly submitted in support of candidature for professional qualification or academic degree presenting the author's findings and research. It differs from a thoughtful research project which is a simple retelling of facts. Good thesis help to prove your ideas will provide the readers with answers to "How" and "Why".