Thesis Statement Tutorial Write a Thesis Statement in 5 Easy Steps This thesis statement tutorial will help your students master the persuasive essay thesis is a matter of minutes.
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The thesis statement usually appears near the beginning of a paper. It can be the first sentence of an essay, but that often feels like a simplistic, unexciting beginning. It more frequently appears at or near the end of the first paragraph or two. Here is the first paragraph of Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.'s essay Notice how everything drives the reader toward the last sentence and how that last sentence clearly signals what the rest of this essay is going to do.
The first paragraph serves as kind of a funnel opening to the essay which draws and invites readers into the discussion, which is then focused by the thesis statement before the work of the essay actually begins. You will discover that some writers will delay the articulation of the paper's focus, its thesis, until the very end of the paper. That is possible if it is clear to thoughtful readers throughout the paper what the business of the essay truly is; frankly, it's probably not a good idea for beginning writers.
Avoid announcing the thesis statement as if it were a thesis statement. In other words, avoid using phrases such as "The purpose of this paper is . . . . " or "In this paper, I will attempt to . . . ." Such phrases betray this paper to be the work of an amateur. If necessary, write the thesis statement that way the first time; it might help you determine, in fact, that this your thesis statement. But when you rewrite your paper, eliminate the bald assertion that this is your thesis statement and write the statement itself without that annoying, unnecessary preface.
Which type of claim is right for your argument? Which type of thesis or claim you use for your argument will depend on your position and knowledge of the topic, your audience, and the context of your paper. You might want to think about where you imagine your audience to be on this topic and pinpoint where you think the biggest difference in viewpoints might be. Even if you start with one type of claim you probably will be using several within the paper. Regardless of the type of claim you choose to utilize it is key to identify the controversy or debate you are addressing and to define your position early on in the paper.
For instance, if you are writing about capital punishment, your thesis statement should not be something like the following.
► Capital punishment is not the appropriate way of punishing a person for a crime he has committed.
This is an example of a weak thesis statement because it is too generic as well as vague.
To make the thesis statement more specific, you can ask yourself why you think it is bad, which will generate an answer that will help in making your thesis statement more specific.
Remember to follow the specific order of explanation in the body of your essay as mentioned in your thesis statement.
► Recycling helps in saving natural resources, conserving energy, and decreasing pollution.
Claims of cause and effect: These claims argue that one person, thing, or event caused another thing or event to occur. Example:
Claims typically fall into one of four categories. Thinking about how you want to approach your topic, in other words what type of claim you want to make, is one way to focus your thesis on one particular aspect of your broader topic.
This thesis narrows the scope of the argument by specifying not just what the focus of a national anti-pollution campaign should be but also why this is the appropriate focus.
In this example the topic of drugs has been narrowed down to illegal drugs and the detriment has been narrowed down to gang violence. This is a much more manageable topic.
Both of the thesis statements above are improvements because they do not simply state the obvious: they give a reason why or how we can accept the thesis statement.
► Humans do not have the right to take away the life of other humans, hence capital punishment is not the correct way of punishing a criminal.