Key concepts for an effective thesis statement

This statement is on its way to being a thesis.

Developing A Thesis

However, it is too easy to imagine possible counter- arguments. For example, an observer of societal trends may believe that parenting or easy access to weapons are important factors in youth violence. While poor parenting and easy access to weapons may act as contributory factors, in fact when children are exposed to television violence they become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of others, are more fearful of the world around them, and are more likely to behave in aggressive or harmful ways toward others. A thesis is the evolutionary result of a thinking process, not a miraculous creation.

Formulating a thesis is not the first thing you do after reading an essay assignment. Your claim should not be outlandish, nor should it be mere personal opinion or preference e. Precise — It is focused and specific. A strong thesis proves a point without discussing everything. It clearly asserts your own conclusion based on evidence.

Note: Be flexible. It is perfectly okay to change your thesis! Arguable — It should be contestable, proposing an arguable point with which people could reasonably disagree. Relevant — If you are responding to an assignment, the thesis should answer the question your teacher has posed. Aware of Counters — It anticipates and refutes the counter-arguments. Theses that are too vague often have this problem. Would anyone possible care about this thesis?

So What? Does your thesis present a position or an interpretation worth pursuing? Myths about Thesis Statements Every paper requires one. Essays of literary interpretation often want you to be aware of many effects rather than seeming to box yourself into one view of the text.

A thesis statement must come at the end of the first paragraph.


  1. Finding Your Point of View.
  2. Identify a topic?
  3. Quick Links.
  4. the purpose of thesis statement.

A thesis statement must be one sentence in length , no matter how many clauses it contains. Clear writing is more important than rules like these. Use two or three sentences if you need them. A complex argument may require a whole tightly-knit paragraph to make its initial statement of position. It may be advisable to draft a hypothesis or tentative thesis statement near the start of a big project, but changing and refining a thesis is a main task of thinking your way through your ideas as you write a paper.

And some essay projects need to explore the question in depth without being locked in before they can provide even a tentative answer.

Thesis Statement: Bad vs. Good

You will lose credibility as a writer if you become only a mouthpiece or a copyist; you will gain credibility by grabbing the reader with your own ideas and words. A well-crafted thesis statement reflects well-crafted ideas. It signals a writer who has intelligence, commitment, and enthusiasm. Wright St. Degree Ph. How long does it need to be? Tip : In order to write a successful thesis statement: Avoid burying a great thesis statement in the middle of a paragraph or late in the paper. Be as clear and as specific as possible; avoid vague words.

Tip : Check your thesis: Are there two large statements connected loosely by a coordinating conjunction i. Would a subordinating conjunction help i. Or do the two statements imply a fuzzy unfocused thesis? If so, settle on one single focus and then proceed with further development. Is your thesis statement too general? Compare this original thesis too general with three possible revisions more focused, each presenting a different approach to the same topic : Original thesis : There are serious objections to today's horror movies.

Revised theses : Because modern cinematic techniques have allowed filmmakers to get more graphic, horror flicks have desensitized young American viewers to violence. The pornographic violence in "bloodbath" slasher movies degrades both men and women. Today's slasher movies fail to deliver the emotional catharsis that s horror films did. Is your thesis statement clear?

Tip : In order to be as clear as possible in your writing: Unless you're writing a technical report, avoid technical language. Always avoid jargon, unless you are confident your audience will be familiar with it. Compare the original thesis not specific and clear enough with the revised version much more specific and clear : Original thesis : Although the timber wolf is a timid and gentle animal, it is being systematically exterminated.

Tips on Writing Your Thesis Statement

Does your thesis include a comment about your position on the issue at hand? Tips : Avoid merely announcing the topic; your original and specific "angle" should be clear.

What is a Thesis Statement?

In this way you will tell your reader why your take on the issue matters. Original thesis : In this paper, I will discuss the relationship between fairy tales and early childhood.

Revised thesis : Not just empty stories for kids, fairy tales shed light on the psychology of young children. Original thesis : We must save the whales. Revised thesis : Because our planet's health may depend upon biological diversity, we should save the whales.

When you make a subjective judgment call, specify and justify your reasoning. Original thesis : Socialism is the best form of government for Kenya. Revised thesis : If the government takes over industry in Kenya, the industry will become more efficient. Avoid merely reporting a fact. Say more than what is already proven fact.

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Go further with your ideas. Otherwise… why would your point matter? Original thesis : Hoover's administration was rocked by scandal.

Thesis Statements: Four Steps to a Great Essay - 60second Recap®

Revised thesis : The many scandals of Hoover's administration revealed basic problems with the Republican Party's nominating process. Is your thesis statement original?