• Save
What is a Thesis Statement?
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

What is a Thesis Statement?

on

  • 38,385 views

How to create a thesis statement, common errors, examples of poor thesis statements and space to correct them

How to create a thesis statement, common errors, examples of poor thesis statements and space to correct them

Statistics

Views

Total Views
38,385
Views on SlideShare
35,012
Embed Views
3,373

Actions

Likes
26
Downloads
0
Comments
1

48 Embeds 3,373

http://thesisdevelopment.wikispaces.com 962
http://ncvps.blackboard.com 841
http://farringtonhighschool.libguides.com 342
http://apatutoriallmc.wikispaces.com 294
http://odyssey.ecollege.com 163
http://trinity.nsw.libguides.com 140
http://monte.libguides.com 98
http://blackboard.nicoletcollege.edu 81
https://msugf.desire2learn.com 72
http://mlatutorial.wikispaces.com 62
http://www.slideshare.net 39
http://www.crteacher.com 30
http://cccti.blackboard.com 25
http://www.pinterest.com 23
http://nakama.cc.sophia.ac.jp 23
https://msugfonline.org 22
https://ncvps.blackboard.com 17
http://www.classjump.com 16
http://essaydocs.patwill.com 14
https://thesisdevelopment.wikispaces.com 13
http://classjump.com 13
http://ohsu.mrooms3.net 12
http://waipahu.libguides.com 10
http://www.essaydocs.com 8
https://mj89sp3sau2k7lj1eg3k40hkeppguj6j-a-sites-opensocial.googleusercontent.com 7
http://ncvps.blackboard.net 5
http://libguides.mhs.vic.edu.au 5
http://www.essaydoc.com 4
http://lhuitt.wikispaces.com 4
http://titanenglish.wikispaces.com 3
http://static.slidesharecdn.com 2
http://vizedhtmlcontent.next.ecollege.com 2
http://pinterest.com 2
http://trinity-nsw.beta.libguides.com 2
https://atseminary.talentlms.com 2
http://brooklyn.sjcny.libguides.com 2
http://libguides.nexus.edu.sg 2
http://www.google.com 1
https://ncvps.blackboard.net 1
https://c1.livetext.com 1
http://translate.googleusercontent.com 1
https://ccbcmd-bb.blackboard.com 1
http://bb.beaufortccc.edu 1
http://learn.vccs.edu 1
https://gfcmsu.desire2learn.com 1
http://iccstage.blackboard.com 1
https://ecourses.tvcc.edu 1
http://www.google.co.uk 1
More...

Accessibility

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Microsoft PowerPoint

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

What is a Thesis Statement? What is a Thesis Statement? Presentation Transcript

  • What is a THESIS STATEMENT? Or, what you need to know to write a successful essay for the rest of your school career
  • Definition Recap
    • A thesis statement is a one-sentence summarization of the argument or analysis that is to follow.
    • Think of the thesis as the answer to the question your paper explores.
  • Why Should Your Essay Contain A Thesis Statement?
    • to test your ideas by condensing them into a sentence or two
    • to better organize and develop your argument
    • to provide your reader with a “guide” to your argument
    • (source: http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/pamphlets/thesis_statement.shtml)
  • How to create a thesis statement if the topic is assigned
    • Almost all assignments, no matter how complicated, can be reduced to a single question. Your first step, then, is to condense the assignment into a specific question. For example, if your assignment is “Write a report to the local school board explaining the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class,” turn the request into a question like “What are the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class?” After you’ve chosen the question your essay will answer, compose one or two complete sentences answering that question.
  • Example
    • Q: “What are the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class?”
    • A: “The potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class are . . . .”
    • OR
    • A: “Using computers in a fourth-grade class promises to improve . . . .”
    • The answer to the question is the thesis statement for the essay.
    • (Source: http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/pamphlets/thesis_statement.shtml)
  • How to Tell a Strong Thesis Sentence from a Weak One
    • 1. A strong thesis takes some sort of stand.
    • Remember that your thesis needs to show your conclusions about a subject. For example, if you are writing a paper for a class on fitness, you might be asked to choose a popular weight-loss product to evaluate. Here is one thesis statement:
    • There are some negative and positive aspects to the Banana Herb Tea Supplement.
    • This is a weak thesis. First, it fails to take a stand. Second, the phrase “negative and positive aspects” is vague.
  • How to Tell a Strong Thesis Sentence from a Weak One (con’t.)
    • Because Banana Herb Tea Supplement promotes rapid weight loss that results in the loss of muscle and lean body mass, it poses a potential danger to customers.
    • This is a strong thesis because it takes a stand.
  • How to tell a strong thesis statement from a weak one (con’t.)
    • 2. A strong thesis justifies (gives good reason for) discussion. It isn’t simply a fact or observation.
    • Your thesis should indicate the point of the discussion. If your assignment is to write a paper on relationship systems, using your own family as an example, you might come up with either of these two thesis statements:
    • My family is an extended family.
    • This is a weak thesis because it states an observation. Your reader won’t be able to tell the point of the statement, and will probably stop reading.
  • How to tell a strong thesis statement from a weak one (con’t.)
    • While most American families would view familial (within the family) marriage as a threat to the nuclear family structure, many Iranian families, like my own, believe that these marriages help reinforce kinship ties in an extended family.
    • This is a strong thesis because it shows how your experience contradicts a widely-accepted view. A good strategy for creating a strong thesis is to show that the topic is controversial. Readers will be interested in reading the rest of the essay to see how you support your point.
  • Another example of a weak “fact-only” thesis
    • In the early 1970s, California was in the top five in the nation for education. Now it is in the bottom five.
    • This is just a fact. There is nothing to argue here. What this needs is some kind of opinion or some kind of insight. For instance, the writer could try to look at why this change happened. Or maybe the writer could look at how this change has affected students in California. Following either one of these routes would result in an arguable thesis statement.
    • (Source: http://www.nijomu.com/thesisstatements-probs.pdf)
  • How to tell a strong thesis statement from a weak one (con’t.)
    • 3. A strong thesis expresses one main idea.
    • Readers need to be able to see that your paper has one main point. If your thesis expresses more than one idea, then you might confuse your readers about the subject of your paper. For example:
    • Companies need to exploit the marketing potential of the Internet, and web pages can provide both advertising and customer support.
    • This is a weak thesis statement because the reader can’t decide whether the paper is about marketing on the Internet or web pages. To revise the thesis, the relationship between the two ideas needs to become more clear.
  • How to tell a strong thesis statement from a weak one (con’t.)
    • One way to revise the thesis would be to write:
    • Because the Internet is filled with tremendous marketing potential, companies should exploit this potential by using web pages that offer both advertising and customer support.
    • This is a strong thesis because it shows that the two ideas are related. Hint: a great many clear and engaging thesis statements contain words like “because,” “since,” “so,” “although,” “unless,” and “however.”
  • Another example of a too-broad thesis statement:
    • Many creative suggestions have been made for how to fix the educational crisis in California.
    • This is just too big a topic to cover in five pages. Everyone in the state has an opinion about how to fix the educational system. So the writer needs a narrower focus. What the writer could do here is focus on the one or two suggestions that the writer feels would be the most successful. Not only would this give the essay a manageable focus, but would also give a more arguable thesis, since the writer would have to show why the suggestions are more likely to work.
    • (Source: http://www.nijomu.com/thesisstatements-probs.pdf)
  • How to tell a strong thesis statement from a weak one (con’t.)
    • 4. A strong thesis statement is specific.
    • A thesis statement should show exactly what your paper will be about, and will help you keep your paper to a manageable topic. For example, if you write a paper on hunger, you might say:
    • World hunger has many causes and effects.
    • This is a weak thesis statement for two major reasons. First, “world hunger” can’t be discussed thoroughly in five or ten pages. Second, "many causes and effects" is vague. You should be able to identify specific causes and effects.
  • How to tell a strong thesis statement from a weak one (con’t.)
    • A revised thesis might look like this:
    • Hunger continues in Appalachia because jobs are scarce and farming in the poor soil is rarely profitable (money-making).
    • This is a strong thesis because it narrows the subject to a more specific and manageable topic and it also identifies the specific causes for the existence of hunger.
  • Another example of a too-vague thesis statement
    • Most public school teachers are really bad.
    • What does the writer mean by “bad”? The reader may think bad means that the teachers don’t challenge the students enough, but the reader may assume that bad means that the teachers assign too much homework. So it would be clearer if the writer mentioned what “bad” means. In general, attributes like good, bad, interesting, unique, etc. are open to interpretation and are therefore vague. Use specific language. Readers can’t read your mind, so be specific.
    • (Source: http://www.nijomu.com/thesisstatements-probs.pdf)
  • Be an Insider
    • After coming up with a clear thesis to discuss in an essay, you must ask this crucial question: “am I an insider in this matter?” If you know something about the topic or thesis that the reader doesn’t know, or if you have special expertise in the matter, you can present yourself as an insider.
    • (Source: http://community.berea.edu/learningcenter/PDF/lc/facultyresources/thesisstatement.html)
    • Figure out and establish your special qualifications as an expert. For example, the student who writes about tourists doesn’t need to be a world traveler to be an expert about her topic. She does need to know a good deal about being bored at a tourist attraction. Concentrating on tourists as the point of interest, she can—if she has been to a few tourist attractions—discuss the tourists she observed there, and show what makes them interesting to her (and thus to the reader).
    • It’s a point that can’t be emphasized too much: if you can’t write about something you’re an expert on, if you can’t give the reader the insider’s view, you’ll be staying on the surface and you’ll wind up with a rehash of what you both already know.
  • Good v. Bad
    • Holden Caulfield is a troubled boy.
      • What’s wrong with this thesis?
      • How can you rewrite it to improve it?
  • Good v. Bad
    • If your assigned topic is “Holden’s dislike of phoniness”, what questions could you turn that into?
    • How can you turn those questions into thesis statements?
  • Good v. Bad
    • Allie’s death seems to have had some strong effect on Holden.
      • What’s wrong with this thesis statement?
      • How can you rewrite it to improve it?
  • Good v. Bad
    • If your assigned topic is “relationships in JLC”, what questions can you ask about that topic?
    • How can you answer those questions and make a thesis?
  • Good v. Bad
    • The mothers and the daughters don’t communicate.
      • What’s wrong with this thesis?
      • How can you rewrite it to make it better?
  • Good v. Bad
    • Culture is a very important part of JLC.
      • What’s wrong with this thesis statement?
      • How can you rewrite it to make it better?
  • Good v. Bad
    • June doesn’t know her mother well.
      • What’s wrong with this thesis?
      • How can you rewrite it to make it better?
  • Sources
    • http://community.berea.edu/learningcenter/PDF/lc/facultyresources/thesisstatement.html
    • http://www.nijomu.com/thesisstatements-probs.pdf
    • http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/pamphlets/thesis_statement.shtml