You need to know what a thesis statement is before diving into the depth of the topic.
A thesis statement sums up and ties together the main idea of your essay. A thesis statement usually comes at the end of the introductory paragraph. If you do not write a strong thesis statement, your arguments will fade away and shift the focus from the main points you will be covering in your essay.
A thesis statement gives a specific order to your arguments. No matter what type of essay you are writing; be it argumentative, expository, narrative, or research, you need a thesis statement to make your arguments logical. Since a thesis statement is so important in your essay, it is always good to have some tips to write a strong thesis statement.
Purpose of Thesis Statement to be at the Start
An important aspect for a thesis statement to be at the beginning of the essay, that is the introductory paragraph, is to let your readers read it before reading the whole essay. Thesis statements are usually underlined, so readers directly read the thesis statement and decide whether the essay has the content they want to read or not. If a person is looking for some content to read, it is obviously difficult to read long essays and then get to know in the middle that this is not something he/she is looking for. These statements will save the readers’ time looking for the information that they need from a bulk of essays and articles.
Qualities of a Strong Thesis Statement
You may have occasionally heard “the first impression is the last impression”. This is almost the same case with the thesis statement. As thesis statements come at the end of your introduction so they will be conveying the main points of your essay. To make your audience interested in your writings, you must write a strong thesis statement. Here are a few enlisted qualities that comprise a strong thesis statement.
- Should be concise
A thesis statement should be concise meaning that you should not cover unnecessary details in your thesis statement. It should be short and convey a point stance about the topic. A short thesis statement is convincing for the readers, as it does not take much of their time and helps them quickly develop an opinion about the quality of your essay. It is better to write one or two sentences comprising 30 to 40 words. It can also consist of a dependent and an independent clause.
- Should be in a perfect position
The position of your thesis statement matters a lot to your reader especially to your instructors if it is academic writing. Try to place your thesis statement at the end of the introductory paragraph. It should be placed in the last 2 to 3 lines. It is preferable to place only one sentence after the thesis statement, that too is a transition to move from the introduction to the body paragraph.
- Delivers the main idea
Although a thesis statement should deliver the main idea of the essay in a sentence or two, it should never say something to which everybody agrees or considers true. This is so important for argumentative essays to provide readers a thesis statement that leaves room for argument and discussion. It will also attract your audience to read the whole essay as they will be interested in knowing your stance on the argument you presented in the thesis statement.
- Should be specific
A thesis statement should always be specific to the topic. It just comprises a maximum of two sentences, so there is no space for unnecessary discussion. You need to strictly adhere to the main idea and talk about it in your thesis statement.
Categories of a Thesis Statement
As there are many different types of essays, thesis statements also come in two different categories. You have to decide what kind of thesis statement fits with the nature of your essay. The two basic categories of thesis statements that are persuasive thesis statements and informative thesis statements are explained below.
Informative thesis statement
An informative thesis statement is used when your purpose is to merely inform the audience about your stance on the topic. You simply explain the main points of your essay in the same order that you will be following in your essay. Its purpose is to inform the audience about the content of the topic. An informative thesis statement can look like this:
“To make pizza, you need all the ingredients, know the recipe and work on its presentation.”
This type of thesis statement just informs the audience about the main points of the essay. In the given thesis statement, the writer is simply informing the readers what they need, to make a pizza. The essay will follow the same order for the body paragraphs as followed by the points mentioned in the thesis statement.
Persuasive thesis statement
Persuasive thesis statements do not inform the audience, they present your opinion about the topic being discussed and reasoning for why your opinion is true. This is usually for the argumentative essay where you are not informing the audience rather you are providing them with your stance on the topic, and you also have to provide reasoning to justify your point. The persuasive thesis statement has its meaning in its name, persuading your audience and convincing them to support your arguments. It looks as follows:
“Pizzas are famous fast food because they are liked all over the world, easy to make, and taste delicious.”
This type of thesis statement is used for persuading the audience. Here, the author is not informing the readers that pizza is famous. In fact, the writer is providing an opinion that pizza is famous for all fast foods and then explains why it is famous.. The essay will follow the same pattern for the body paragraphs, it will discuss one reason for pizza being famous per paragraph. Thus, any person who will read the thesis statement first will instantly understand the content that the essay will cover and the order in which it will cover the content. That is how thesis statements help your essays.
How to Style a Strong Thesis Statement
There are two different categories to write a thesis statement. Similarly, there are two different styles in which you can write your thesis statement.
- By mentioning points
One type of thesis statement is for relatively shorter essays, the ones where you do not have to provide such content. It basically involves two to three body paragraphs and is mostly for lower academic levels. It is possible to enlist all the points in your thesis statement that you will cover in your essay. It is the common style of writing thesis statements and is widely followed by most writers. Its shortcoming is that it cannot be written for extremely long essays or research papers because it would not be possible to enlist all the points covered in the writing.
- By writing the main idea
In higher academic levels or mostly for research purposes, essays are too long, usually six pages long. It is not possible for a writer to write a brief thesis statement by including all the main points of the six pages. In short, it is so challenging to summarize a six-page essay in a thesis statement. In such cases, the thesis statement does not involve enlisting main points. It involves the main idea of the topic. In this way, the order of the essay is also not restricted, and you can go on writing the essay in whatever order you want. There will not be any thesis statement to restrict your order of body paragraphs. However, it is always better to write the order of your points in the essay outline, as it will assist you in writing the final draft.
- Thesis statement when the topic is given
In most cases, you are assigned the topic to write an essay. In that case, where you already have the topic to discuss, you do not need to brainstorm the ideas for deciding topics. You have to move to the step where you have to start thinking about the content. Prepare the outline for your essay and design a strong thesis statement. If you feel that there are certain aspects lacking in your thesis statement, this means you need to do more research.
- Thesis statement when the topic is not given
There are some situations where you have to think about the topic of your essay as well. You need to brainstorm ideas. Always choose the topic about which you have more information, as it will help you write a more competitive essay. This is an easier scenario because you will probably be writing about something that interests you. You will also be able to build a strong thesis statement.
To build a strong thesis statement, you have to follow the following mentioned steps.
- Start developing a thesis statement with a question
Writing a thesis statement is an important step in the whole process of writing your essay. Give as much time to your thesis statement as it needs to be a strong one. It has a specific pattern to follow. First, when you get to know about the topic, ask a general question on the topic of the essay. The nature of the question may vary depending on the type of essay you are writing. It matters a lot whether you are writing an expository essay, argumentative or research essay. For instance, you have to write an essay on the topic “influence of the internet on education”.
For this topic, you will develop a question asking about the impacts of the internet. As the internet can either have positive or negative impacts on education so you will formulate a question for this. The question will be somewhat like this
“Has the internet had a negative or positive impact on education?”
Your first step towards the formation of a thesis statement is completed after developing a question.
- Write your initial answer
After the question, you have to do research on the given topic. Suppose you have done enough research on the impact of the internet on education, and you came across more positive impacts rather than negative impacts. It will build your immediate stance on the topic. Now is the time to answer the question you initially asked. In our case, the answer to the question can be “The internet has more positive impact than the negative impact on education.”
After answering your initial question, you will be done with the second step of formulating your thesis statement.
- Built a statement on your answer
This is the final and most essential step for thesis statement formation. In this step, you will briefly explain your initial answer to the question. For this “impact of the internet” topic, you will build your thesis statement based on the main idea. The main idea here is that the internet positively impacts education. However, there are a few negative impacts, but they are usually ignored because of the positive impacts that the internet poses. Thus, the thesis statement will state this main idea and enlist some positive impacts of the internet on education. These enlisted points will be covered in the same order in each of the body paragraphs of the essay. The thesis statement for this topic will be something as follows.
The negative impacts of the internet are often neglected because of the positive impact internet poses on education; including access to information, exposure to modern aspects of life, and a smooth online environment between teachers and students
Summing up the whole discussion, you have to write your thesis statement after having enough information about the topic. It will help you a lot in hooking your audience to your content. It will also help readers save their time, as they will only read the thesis statement instead of reading the entire essay to find what they are looking for.