A thesis is usually the first sentence that pops up whenever someone sits down to write an essay. There is a reason for that. Every essay, speech, or paragraph-based text has a thesis, but not every thesis belongs in a text. Professionals like lawyers and politicians work in a strong thesis into their arguments to help themselves and their readers follow their train of thoughts. A thesis is prevalent in journalism and even advertising. Without one, your arguments fall flat and have nothing to latch on to – resulting in a poorly structured text without much substance. So, to avoid such a misfortune, let’s look at some thesis statement examples, along with writing tips and explanations.
It might sound scary and intimidating at first, but a thesis is a relatively simple thing that you might have written or thought of by yourself already. A thesis is a one to two sentences tied together that work as a rope to your future arguments.
In case of the most commonly met thesis, the one in student persuasive or comparative essays, it lets readers grasp the main subject of the essay and your stance or side on it. It summarizes your topic in a striking and unambiguous statement that you or your readers can refer to in the future.
Here are two strong thesis statement examples for essays:
Let’s take a look at this thesis. Your stance on the topic is that American children should study Shakespeare. Why? Because the language used in Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets helps developing minds grow healthy and strong. Your job from now on, using this thesis would be to gather resources and prove your statement to be true using arguments. If your reader were to scan the first paragraph of your essay (where the thesis ought to be) they’d be able to easily pick it out from the rest of the text.
A bad example of the same thesis would be:
Students should read Shakespeare because it will make them smarter.
See? It’s unfocused, it doesn’t have any details and states the blatantly obvious. High Schools already have dedicated lessons to Shakespeare. Hamlet and Romeo & Juliet are read all around the world on a daily basis. So, your recommendation is completely useless. Also, claiming that simply reading Shakespeare in schools will make students smarter. That’s also not accurate. Reading something has never made someone 100% smarter.
Let’s move on with our list of good thesis statement examples; here is a second one:
Now, this thesis consists of two sentences. The first sentence lets readers see your stance on the subject – adults in a given age group aren’t drinking enough water. The second one lets readers know that not drinking enough water can have an adverse effect on one’s health.
This sort of thesis is more common in later courses at university because of its complex nature; but, it can be applied to virtually any essay as long as writers construct their arguments well. This is, in fact, one of the best thesis statement examples for research papers. By listing several side effects, you transform this thesis into a sort of hook. A hook is a writing device used to attract readers’ attention. Based on the language of your essay (whether it keeps a strict academic tone or is a bit loose and friendly), such a hook can be almost anything.
Here is a bad example of the same thesis:
Humans should drink more water because water prevents disease and due to popular research it’s known that adults don’t drink enough water.
First off, never write humans as a general term in your essays. Trust me, there is nothing more generalising than saying things like “human race” or “since the existence of humans began.” It’s not a serious argument, nor is it relevant and true. Think about it, humans haven’t been around forever. We haven’t done everything. It’s also too broad a target for an essay. In a better example, we gave an age group, 18 to 28, which lets us narrow our research. If we were to use humans for our research, we’d end up with a fifty to a hundred pages of writing, and let’s face it – nobody would ever read that. Stick to a more centered and tight thesis.
That’s an easy question to answer. Are you writing about a particular brand of car or automobile industry as a whole? Are you going to argue for the benefit of chocolate in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Bar or are you going to explain why Switzerland has the best confectionaries? See my point?
Narrowing down your topic of discussion lets you focus primarily on the task at hand. Which is to discuss the pros or cons of something within something. If you pick a subject that is too big or way too complicated you risk missing out on important details in your research that will eventually discredit not only the thesis but your entire paper. Not to mention the weeks or even months of research you will need to cover all the material. Do yourself a favor and always narrow it down. If you think it’s too broad, it probably is.
The thesis should always be positioned within the first paragraph, if possible at the end. There are several exceptions but those only apply to university graduates and researchers on a very high level, so we won’t dive into those right now. The thing you need to remember is:
The main reason the thesis belongs at the beginning of an essay is that it functions as a roadmap for your readers. It’s like a road sign that lets readers know in what direction they are heading. Fifteen pages to ‘Best sandwiches’ if you see what I mean.
While some teachers or professors will require that you come up with your thesis before you begin writing your paper, a thesis can and most times should evolve during the writing process. The reason your teachers want to review the thesis is so they can make sure you are writing something that is appropriate for your skill and school. Besides that, they don’t control your writing.
The reason a thesis evolves is that in the process of research and information gathering, we usually come up with brilliant ideas that may change our point of view. If your current thesis is:
Cheeseburgers are better than hamburgers because ________
a bit down the line, you might reconsider your statement. That is not a problem. As long as you have the time to write the paper and modify your thesis, you should and are encouraged to experiment. Maybe you’ll find out you like hamburgers more than cheeseburgers, and your thesis would reflect that:
Hamburgers are far superior to cheeseburgers because _____.
The only issue you might encounter when changing your thesis is the amount of rewriting you will need to do to finish the paper. That’s why it is recommended that you do extensive research before beginning the actual writing process. Generally speaking, when there is a writing assignment, a teacher or professor will give extra time for research – one or two weeks. This way, students can avoid rewriting large sections of their papers. Rewriting large chunks of text can lead to omitted information that gets lost along the way and may eventually damage the composition of your otherwise perfect essay. So start on time and don’t procrastinate.
A thesis can be found in almost every sort of academic and professionally written text. Sometimes we craft them daily, without even thinking. A thesis isn’t all that complicated, but it can be tricky to master. As with everything you should practice writing examples of a thesis statement and always strive for excellence. Writing and rewriting a thesis several times ensures that it states your desired position as clear as possible. This is a good exercise to keep in mind for the future as well.