Supporting a Thesis
I have an idea, now what?
• Thesis statement (or central thought)
• Main point of an essay
• Explain what the essay will be about and expresses the
writer’s position on the subject
• Does for an essay what a topic sentence does for a
• Playing team sports, especially football and baseball,
develops skills and qualities that can make you successful in
life because these sports demand communication,
teamwork, and responsibility
What is a Thesis
• The idea for your thesis usually will come from your
• Don’t expect to sit down and just write it.
• Working Thesis
• Go over your prewriting and highlight details that link to
the same subtopic.
• Write a word or phrase that describes each group
• Example on page 106
Developing Your Thesis
• Make an assertion
• Assertion – takes a position, expresses a view point,
suggests your approach to a topic
Focus on ONE central point
Offer an original perspective on your topic
Avoid making an announcement
Use your thesis to preview the organization of the essay
Writing an Effective
• Thesis statements should always be in the FIRST (or
• It can go anywhere in that paragraph
• Any type of information that will convince your reader that
your thesis is reasonable or correct
• Examples, statistics, expert opinion
• This evidence is then organized into paragraphs to make up the
body of your essay.
Support Your Thesis with
• Analyze your purpose, audience, and thesis to determine what types
of evidence will be most effective.
• Unfamiliar audience
• Definitions, historical background, explanation , factual and descriptive
• Compare/contrast, advantages/disadvantages, examples, problems,
statistics, and quotes.
• Table 5.1 on page 110
• What types of evidence would you use for this thesis statement
• “The pressure to become financially independent is a challenge for
many young adults and often causes them to develop social and
Choosing Types of
• Visualize yourself speaking to your audience.
• Develop a skeletal outline of major headings with plenty
of blank space under each.
• Draw a graphic organizer of your essay, filling in
supporting evidence as you think of it.
• Discuss your thesis statement with a classmate; try to
explain why he or she should accept your thesis as valid.
Collect Your Evidence
Make sure the evidence is relevant.
Provide specific evidence.
Offer a variety of evidence.
Provide a sufficient amount of evidence.
Provide representative evidence.
Provide accurate evidence.
Choose the Best Evidence
• For academic writing
• Personal experiences and opinions are not considered valid
• Use objective evidence
Choosing Evidence for
Use your library
See Ch. 19 for more ideas
Using Sources to Support