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Pasco-Hernando Community College Tutorial Series Academic Essays
Important Note: Although there are some variations, the approach taken in these tutorials is generally accepted. If you have a question about what is expected for a particular assignment, contact your instructor.
Essay Organization Position of Thesis in Essay Introduction Paragraph Get reader’s attention, gives background, gives thesis statement Body Paragraphs Paragraphs which prove the thesis between the Introductory Paragraph and the Concluding Paragraph. The number of body paragraphs depends upon length of paper Concluding Paragraph Sum up proof and restate thesis. Some instructors ask for a statement drawing an implication about the information presented instead of or in addition to a restatement of thesis.
What is a thesis statement? A thesis statement is a one-sentence statement taking a position on a debatable issue. It is a statement and not a question. It is a statement: one sentence. It takes a position and does not simply state a fact If you are assigned a question, your thesis statement is a one-sentence answer to the question. If you are assigned a topic, you narrow the focus as you explore and then take a stand on a debatable issue on the topic.
Why do you need a thesis statement? A thesis statement tells what the paper will prove. It helps you keep focused since all the details in your paper should support what is said in the thesis statement. Background information in the introductory paragraph leads into the thesis. The body paragraphs have supporting details that prove the thesis. The concluding paragraph includes restatement of the thesis in addition to a summary of the proof and/or statement of general implication depending upon instructor preference. The thesis statement organizes and structures your essay.
Where does a thesis statement go? Putting the thesis at the end of the introduction paragraph is generally accepted although some may say it may be placed anywhere in the introductory paragraph. A revised version of your thesis statement is also inserted in the last (concluding) paragraph unless your instructor prefers a statement showing the implications of the information presented instead.
How do you write a thesis statement? If assigned a question, the thesis statement is a one- sentence answer to the question. If assigned a topic, after narrowing the topic, take a stand on a debatable aspect which answers the question “What is your position on this issue?” A thesis statement may include specific proof points, but it does not have to.
What does a thesis look like? If proof points are used, the number will vary with the length of the paper. A 500-word essay will typically have three points but could have two or four. For example, in answering a question or creating a thesis from a topic about how modern technology has affected everyday life, here is a possible thesis statement: Modern technology has most improved modern life through convenience, efficiency, and accessibility.
What does a thesis look like? Here are some examples of thesis statements with specific proof points: For an essay to critique or summarize a book you read: The Kite Runner is a captivating story that deals with friendship, good versus evil, and redemption. For a persuasive essay to prove a position: There must be a mandatory minimum drinking age to reduce alcohol related deaths, alcohol related disease and illness, and the overall consumption of alcohol. For an informative essay: Being environmentally friendly can be easily achieved through recycling, conserving water, and conserving energy.
What does a thesis look like? Here are some examples of thesis statements without specific proof points: For an essay to critique or summarize a book you read: The Kite Runner is a captivating story that deals with major issues in life. For a persuasive essay to prove a position: There must be a mandatory minimum drinking age to reduce adverse consequences to our society. For an informative essay: Being environmentally friendly can be easily achieved with easily adopted programs.
What to avoid in a thesis statement Don’t use statements that refer to yourself or your paper such as Now, I will prove…. This essay will be about…. Don’t use a statement of fact such as Pollution is a problem in America. Forty-six percent of Americas lakes are too polluted for fishing and swimming.
What a thesis should NOT look like For an essay to critique or summarize a book you read: The Kite Runner is a widely praised book. (Don’t use a statement of fact. A thesis must take a position on a debatable issue.) For a persuasive essay to prove a position: Before the existing minimum drinking age, the fatality rate resulting from car accidents for young adults was higher. (Don’t use a statement of fact. A thesis must take a position on a debatable issue. For an informative essay: This essay will provide examples of how you can recycle, conserve water, and conserve energy to help the environment. (Don’t use wording that refers to the essay.)