Thesis Statement

Thesis Statement

What is a Thesis Statement?

A thesis statement is a complete sentence that expresses the main point of an essay. It should be specific. The thesis statement identifies the topic and reflects the writer's purpose, attitude or opinion. A thesis statement also provides a preview of how the writer will arrange the ideas in the essay. The thesis usually appears as the last sentence in your introductory paragraph.

Purposes of a Thesis Statement Can Be:
  • To inform
  • To illustrate
  • To argue a point
  • To define
  • To analyze
  • To classify
  • To compare and/or to contrast
  • To show cause and/or to show effect
A Thesis Statement Should:

(1) state the main point of your essay (2) assert an idea about your topic (3) be specific and detailed (4) suggest the organization of your essay and (5) offer an original perspective on the topic.

To Create a Strong and Clear Thesis Statement:

  • Take a position on a topic. Move from a general to a specific subject. This will help your paper to be focused.
General: driving
Specific: driving drunk
Thesis Statement: Driving is a daily routine for millions of people around the world, but unfortunately it is also increasingly becoming a deadly practice because of the many people who drive drunk.

  • Be neither too broad nor too narrow. Your thesis statement needs to be broad enough to develop your main points but not so broad that you have too much information to incorporate into your essay.
  • Use specific language. Your thesis statement should be a forceful statement written in confident, firm language. This helps the reader to have a clear idea of what is being discussed in the body of the essay. Avoid vague words such as good, bad, nice, great, interesting and things.

When writing your thesis statement, ask the following: Does it make an assertion about your topic? Does it convey your purpose, opinion or attitude? Is it specific?

Page last updated June 26, 2023.