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Writing a Thesis Statement

Does your thesis serve its purpose?

❶You begin the thought process like this:

Thesis statements

Purpose statements
What is a Thesis?
Definition

Although the thesis statement is a valuable organizing tool, it does not have to be the first sentence you write when you begin your paper. If you find yourself getting bogged down trying to zero in on your thesis statement, start writing background or detail paragraphs. Then come back and work on the thesis statement.

Like any other sentence, the thesis statement has a subject and a verb. After you have decided upon the subject, write a verb to go with that subject. It should indicate what assertion you are making about that subject. A good thesis statement is clear, restricted, and precise. It must deal with only ONE dominant idea.

The thesis statement should be phrased in words that permit only ONE interpretation. Verbs made up of is or are plus a vague complement, such as good or interesting, are too imprecise to be useful. Also, avoid sentences with subordinate clauses. Subordinate clauses set booby traps for most writers because it takes so much time to explain the subordinate idea that there is often neither the time nor the space to do justice to the main idea.

Finding the right thesis statement is like fishing; you may have to throw many back before you hook a satisfactory one—one that says exactly what you want it to. A well-thought-out thesis statement controls and directs the paper; it indicates both the writer's purpose and attitude. Use the guidelines below to learn the differences between thesis and purpose statements.

In the first stages of writing, thesis or purpose statements are usually rough or ill-formed and are useful primarily as planning tools. A thesis statement or purpose statement will emerge as you think and write about a topic. The statement can be restricted or clarified and eventually worked into an introduction.

As you revise your paper, try to phrase your thesis or purpose statement in a precise way so that it matches the content and organization of your paper. A thesis statement is a sentence that makes an assertion about a topic and predicts how the topic will be developed. It does not simply announce a topic: X has made a significant impact on the teenage population due to its.

A thesis statement makes a promise to the reader about the scope, purpose, and direction of the paper. It summarizes the conclusions that the writer has reached about the topic. A thesis statement is generally located near the end of the introduction. Sometimes in a long paper, the thesis will be expressed in several sentences or an entire paragraph.

A thesis statement is focused and specific enough to be proven within the boundaries of the paper. Key words nouns and verbs should be specific, accurate, and indicative of the range of research, thrust of the argument or analysis, and the organization of supporting information. A purpose statement announces the purpose, scope, and direction of the paper.

It tells the reader what to expect in a paper and what the specific focus will be.


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A thesis statement makes a promise to the reader about the scope, purpose, and direction of the paper. It summarizes the conclusions that the writer has reached about the topic. A thesis statement is generally located near the end of the introduction.

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The purpose of a thesis statement is to provide a clear, specific argument that will serve as a guide to the reader so she knows what to expect from your essay. A thesis should be related to the question or prompt that your are responding to, but it should provide a specific argument that goes.

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Thesis/Purpose Statement Probably the most daunting task for any writer is to generate an effective thesis statement. In college, academic writing follows a specific pattern— after a brief opening, you state your position in one clear sentence. Purpose of a Thesis. Writing a thesis statement is notoriously hard. The attempt to summarize a paper in a single sentence (or two) probably causes more student frustration than anything else in writing.

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A thesis statement for an academic essay is more than a statement of fact; it is an arguable claim or the writer’s position on the topic, which is usually a direct response the question posed by the assignment. 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. For students especially, crafting a thesis statement can be a.