A Comprehensive Guide to Writing the Perfect Thesis Statement

10 Top Tricks to Write a Winning Thesis Statement

Do you know why most students fail to score a good grade despite writing an evocative essay or an informative academic paper? The reason might seem inconsequential yet shocking! It is because of a missing or poorly structured thesis statement. The indispensability of a thesis statement should never be a question. A thesis statement provides a clear and specific argument that guides the readers about what they can from an essay. Primarily, the thesis statement should relate to the topic of the academic paper. It should also dish out an argument that goes beyond restating the subject.

Guide to Writing the Perfect Thesis Statement

So, how do you write a good thesis statement?

Unless the thesis is a specific argument that is provable and narrow, it won’t do you any good. So, you cannot just use a thesis statement maker to paraphrase the topic without understanding the question. You need to make sure that your thesis statement serves as a roadmap that informs the reader what you will be writing about and why is it so important.

To make this seemingly insurmountable task a little easier for you, here are a few fail-proof tips that you can use to write a winning thesis statement.

  1. Ask a question to determine your thesis

You have to answer a relevant aspect of the topic of your academic paper to write a justified topic sentence. Try to mould the complicated topic into a question and answer it for a fitting thesis statement. Learn with the following example:

Question: “What are the benefits of using technology in an educational environment?”

Thesis: “Technological resources help students become familiar with the various scientific education in real-time while making it engaging.”

In the example, note how you mention 3 of your arguments regarding the topic – real-time education, familiarity with technology and engaging means of imparting knowledge.

  1. Craft your thesis as per the type of paper

While the norms of length and positioning of a thesis statement remain the same, the way you write the thesis will depend on the type of essay you are writing. This means the topic sentences for an essay that explores an issue and a piece that argues for a matter will not be the same. Here is a handy guide for the same:

ü For an analytical essay, you have to break down the topic and mould the thesis around it so that it helps the readers examine and understand the issue better.

ü For an expository essay, the purpose of the thesis statement should be to inform the readers by illuminating a point.

ü For an argumentative essay, your thesis should be more like a claim backed up by evidence that can change other’s minds.

  1. Make your stance clear in the thesis statement

You cannot be ambiguous when writing a thesis statement. The sentence should address just one issue in detail. This will help you support all the points accurately in the body of the paper. Below is an example to help you understand:

Example: “Hemingway’s stories were successful in creating a new prose style with the quintessential dialogues using shorter sentences. The sentences also employed the characteristic strong Anglo-Saxon words.”

Notice how the thesis statement takes just one stance – about the new prose style and only focuses on characteristics that weren’t used before Hemingway arrived in the world of literature.

  1. Put forward a unique argument

To write the best topic sentences, you need to find an exciting way of approaching the topic– something unhackneyed and experimental. Understand this: the topic is already the same. Unless your thesis is fresh and dynamic, you will not be able to put anything new on the table. So, your aim should be to explore an unchartered territory of the topic.

Let us understand this with an example:

“After you see Huckleberry Finn beat himself for the fourth time through the course of the novel, one thing comes into the forefront –the protagonist is literature’s first-ever sadomasochist.”

Several times, people have talked about the generic themes like slavery, poverty, racism and superstitions of the chef-d’œuvre by Mark Twain. But the above example takes the road less travelled to touch upon the aspect of sadism and masochism.  

  1. Ensure that the thesis is provable

Every argument that you make should connect to the thesis in the end. Please do not write a thesis statement first and then check whether it is provable or not. Make sure from the very beginning that the thesis you use can back up with evidence. Here is what a bad thesis statement would look like:

“When you read the novel Tinkers by Paul Harding, you notice the author’s cry for help emanating from the depressing narrative.”

Now, unless you have real-life information, you cannot prove the fact within the fiction that you stated in your thesis.

  1. Follow a rigid structure

Since you will have to write an impactful and accurate thesis statement within the acceptable length of two to three sentences, following a structure will help you keep it organised. Atopic statement must comprise a clear topic and a summary of what you have to say about the matter in question.

Alternatively, you can follow this pattern to write your thesis statement:

è Although [opposing evidence], [reasons] show why someone/thing does something.

è Someone/thing does something because [reason(s)].

è Because of [reason(s)], someone/thing does something.

  1. Write the statement correctly

The purpose of a thesis statement is to be the Polaris and show the reader the way around the points in a paper. So, if you fail to write it accurately, it won’t serve its purpose after all. Therefore, your thesis statement should answer the question of what the paper is about. Apart from that, here are some points that a thesis statement should meet:

  • It should be an assertion and not just an observation.
  • It should tell the reader how you plan to interpret the importance of the topic.
  • It should take a definitive stand and proclaim your perspective towards the subject.
  • It should be debatable, thus giving others the chance to argue an alternate position, or support your claims.
  1. Get the sound right

Since the thesis statement comes in the introduction, there is no way someone will be able to identify and pick it out from the other line. That is unless you make it identifiable by using specific kinds of phrases and words like ‘because’. Also, make sure that you use a tone that is firm and definitive.

Let us study an example.

“Hemingway changed the norms of literature drastically by normalising a frank tone and simplistic writing in the narrative.”

You can understand that this is the thesis statement because you take a stance, you leave scope for debate, and it is not just an observation. 

  1. Know where to place it

The thesis statement should be the first thing to catch the attention of a reader without being too declarative. So, it would be best if you placed them at the beginning of the paper. Now, you can either put it somewhere in the introduction.

Ideally, placing it at the end of the first paragraph would make more impact, especially when you can transition into the first body paragraph where you start proving it. The location would also depend on factors like the length of the introduction or your paper. Limit the thesis statement to one or two sentences and ensure they are to-the-point.

  1. Make sure it all adds up

Analyse the final version of the thesis statement and eliminate any mistakes that can weaken its impact. After you have written the essay, ensure that you have covered all the points that you have stated in the thesis statement. Tick the following pointers to make sure you have got it right:

Æ It should not be a list with too many variables that makes it lose focus.

Æ It should have a topic that you will not be discussing in the paper.

Æ It should not be written in the first person, but you can use the second-person perspective.

Parting words,

A thesis statement can change the course of how the reader feels about your essay – for good or for bad. So, you ought to be careful. Before you sit to write the topic sentences, know the topic like the back of your hand. Limit the topic to a specific area and write down everything that comes to your mind about the issue. Notice the theme in these connections and use them to shape the thesis statement for your paper. All the best!

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Article Author Details

Henry Howkins

Henry Howkins has a PhD in Linguistics and serves as a guest lecturer in several renowned colleges in Australia. She is also associated with the brand MyAssignmenthelp.com through which she extends thesis writing help to students. Taylor has an insatiable love for books and travelling.