What is a thesis statement?
- A sentence that contains the focus of your essay and outlines what it will be about.
- Appears at, or near, the end of the introductory paragraph.
- A thesis should answer research questions and take a position that needs to be argued and supported. Make sure your position is debatable by considering other possible viewpoints and answers to your research question.
A thesis statement has 2 parts:
- Statement of the topic
- The death penalty…
- Black holes…
- Rosa Parks…
- The point of the essay
- …is both cruel and ineffective.
- …can teach scientists about how the universe works.
- …was the most influential person of the civil rights movement.
What to avoid when writing a thesis statement:
- Simply stating the topic or just stating a fact.
- Statements such as, “In my opinion,” “I think.” “This paper will discuss” …
- Questions- it is a statement and not a question.
Be direct and specific to make sure your readers clearly know your position on the topic.
Examples of bad and good thesis statements:
Bad: This paper will discuss influential George Washington.
Good: George Washington was the most influential person of the history of the United States because of his morals and humble nature.
Bad: Pollution is bad for the environment.
Good: At least twenty-five percent of the federal budget should be spent on limiting pollution.
Bad: The War of 1812 occurred before the Civil War.
Good: The War of 1812 set into motion the main events that caused the Civil War.