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Thesis  Workshop Presented by: Brent A. Simoneaux March 15, 2008 Neijiang Normal University
Web site http://www.slideshare.net/bsimoneaux
Thesis papers are by definition  argumentative  essays. Our students are really good at writing  exposition , of their thesis papers end up being  expository essays .  argument
Spectrum of Content exposition argumentation facts & information facts & information +  analysis argument
“ The aim or purpose of  argument  is to use logic (both inductive and deductive) to create reasoned communication of ideas, insights, and experiences to some audience so as to produce a new understanding of some issue for that audience.” argument
Today, we will be talking about  ideals . Remember that ideals cannot always be realized in reality. Today’s T o pics
[object Object],[object Object],Today’s T o pics
Before we go any farther, we need to get our vocabulary straight. Title:  Introduces the topic of the argument as well as generate interest in reading the argument Topic:  States the general subject of the paper Titles & T o pics
Titles and topics are intimately related to and intertwined with  thesis statements . Often,  thesis   statement  is defined as the “central idea of a paper.” Titles & T o pics
However, a better definition would be the following: “ A writer’s  reasoned  conclusion about some issue or writing problem.” Titles & T o pics
This definition of  thesis statement  recalls our definition of argument as well as the original meaning of the word. As Greek logicians used this word, it meant a “premise or proposition to be stated and then proved through logical analysis and argumentation.” Titles & T o pics
Titles & T o pics Thesis statements usually help define a writer’s purpose for some audience. More importantly, a thesis statement focuses both the writer’s and reader’s attention on specific issues to be developed within an essay.
But  how  are titles, topics, and thesis statements related? Titles & T o pics
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
Generally, the writing process occurs in this way: 7. Make changes to thesis statement and outline as you draft 8.  Choose a title that reflects the content of your final draft and creates interest in the reader Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
In other words,  thesis   statements  are a result of the writer’s best reasoned and logical thinking about a  topic . Titles  are a reflection of this the thesis statement that arouse interest in the reader. Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
If students are going to have the best  learning experience , their  focus (and yours) must absolutely be on the  process , not the  product . Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
How do we teach our students to create effective argumentative thesis statements? Thesis Stat e ments
Features: Makes an argumentative assertion about a topic; it states the conclusions that you have reached about your topic.  Thesis Stat e ments
Features: Makes a promise to the reader about the scope, purpose, and direction of your paper.  Thesis Stat e ments
Features: Is focused and specific enough to be "proven" within the boundaries of your paper.  Thesis Stat e ments
Features: Is generally located near the end of the introduction; sometimes, in a long paper, the thesis will be expressed in several sentences or in an entire paragraph.  Thesis Stat e ments
Features: Identifies the relationship between the pieces of evidence that you are using to support your argument. Thesis Stat e ments
Features: It must be arguable. In order for it to be arguable, it must present a view that someone might reasonably contest. In other words, the writer must take a stand on an issue or make a claim that can be defended. Thesis Stat e ments
Analytical Thesis Statement A thesis statement that analyzes the  relationship  among various significant ideas contained in the thesis sentence(s) Thesis Stat e ments
Structure of Analytical Thesis Statements This pattern can serve as an aid: Independent clause(s)  +  restricting clause(s) [general ideas are stated]  [qualifying idea(s) defined]   Thesis Stat e ments
Structure of Analytical Thesis Statements Example: “ University education is more beneficial than technical training [ independent  /  generalization ] because at the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature [ restricting idea ] . ” Thesis Stat e ments
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],Thesis Stat e ments
If you have a good analytical thesis statement, creating an outline is relatively easy. O utlining
O utlining “ A thesis statement focuses both the writer’s and reader’s attention on specific issues to be developed within an essay.” In addition, analytical thesis statements analyze the relationship among these significant ideas. As you can see, it is fairly easy to isolate ideas that should be developed in your essay.
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],O utlining
O utlining From Thesis Statement to Outline Example: “ University education is more beneficial than technical training [ independent  /  generalization ] because at the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature [ restricting idea ] . ”
From Thesis Statement to Outline Example: We immediately recognize that the driving organizational force behind the thesis statement is  comparison  &  contrast . At the most  general  level, we are comparing & contrasting university education to technical training. O utlining
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],O utlining
From Thesis Statement to Outline Example: There is one more key idea that is  implicit  in the thesis statement (this would be easily recognizable using informal logic): “ Acquiring perspectives on life in addition to technical and career related skills is more beneficial than acquiring  only  technical and career related skills.” O utlining
[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],[object Object],O utlining
From Thesis Statement to Outline Let’s not forget our implicit key idea: “ Acquiring perspectives on life in addition to technical and career related skills is more beneficial than acquiring  only  technical and career related skills.” O utlining
From Thesis Statement to Outline Now, let’s try to think through this a different way: by using  informal logic . Look at logic handouts. O utlining
O utlining Deductive conclusion Inductive premise From Thesis Statement to Outline “ University education is more beneficial than technical training [ independent  /  generalization ] because at the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature [ restricting idea ] . ”
Syllogism: Inductive Premise 1 : At the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature  Premise 2:  ? Deductive conclusion : University education is more beneficial than technical training O utlining
From Thesis Statement to Outline Syllogism: Inductive Premise 2:  Acquiring perspectives on life in addition to technical and career related skills is more beneficial than acquiring  only  technical and career related skills. O utlining
Web site http://www.slideshare.net/bsimoneaux  E mail [email_address]

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Thesis Workshop

  • 1. Thesis Workshop Presented by: Brent A. Simoneaux March 15, 2008 Neijiang Normal University
  • 3. Thesis papers are by definition argumentative essays. Our students are really good at writing exposition , of their thesis papers end up being expository essays . argument
  • 4. Spectrum of Content exposition argumentation facts & information facts & information + analysis argument
  • 5. “ The aim or purpose of argument is to use logic (both inductive and deductive) to create reasoned communication of ideas, insights, and experiences to some audience so as to produce a new understanding of some issue for that audience.” argument
  • 6. Today, we will be talking about ideals . Remember that ideals cannot always be realized in reality. Today’s T o pics
  • 7.
  • 8. Before we go any farther, we need to get our vocabulary straight. Title: Introduces the topic of the argument as well as generate interest in reading the argument Topic: States the general subject of the paper Titles & T o pics
  • 9. Titles and topics are intimately related to and intertwined with thesis statements . Often, thesis statement is defined as the “central idea of a paper.” Titles & T o pics
  • 10. However, a better definition would be the following: “ A writer’s reasoned conclusion about some issue or writing problem.” Titles & T o pics
  • 11. This definition of thesis statement recalls our definition of argument as well as the original meaning of the word. As Greek logicians used this word, it meant a “premise or proposition to be stated and then proved through logical analysis and argumentation.” Titles & T o pics
  • 12. Titles & T o pics Thesis statements usually help define a writer’s purpose for some audience. More importantly, a thesis statement focuses both the writer’s and reader’s attention on specific issues to be developed within an essay.
  • 13. But how are titles, topics, and thesis statements related? Titles & T o pics
  • 14.
  • 15.
  • 16.
  • 17. Generally, the writing process occurs in this way: 7. Make changes to thesis statement and outline as you draft 8. Choose a title that reflects the content of your final draft and creates interest in the reader Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
  • 18. In other words, thesis statements are a result of the writer’s best reasoned and logical thinking about a topic . Titles are a reflection of this the thesis statement that arouse interest in the reader. Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
  • 19. If students are going to have the best learning experience , their focus (and yours) must absolutely be on the process , not the product . Titles, T o pics, and Thesis Statements
  • 20. How do we teach our students to create effective argumentative thesis statements? Thesis Stat e ments
  • 21. Features: Makes an argumentative assertion about a topic; it states the conclusions that you have reached about your topic. Thesis Stat e ments
  • 22. Features: Makes a promise to the reader about the scope, purpose, and direction of your paper. Thesis Stat e ments
  • 23. Features: Is focused and specific enough to be "proven" within the boundaries of your paper. Thesis Stat e ments
  • 24. Features: Is generally located near the end of the introduction; sometimes, in a long paper, the thesis will be expressed in several sentences or in an entire paragraph. Thesis Stat e ments
  • 25. Features: Identifies the relationship between the pieces of evidence that you are using to support your argument. Thesis Stat e ments
  • 26. Features: It must be arguable. In order for it to be arguable, it must present a view that someone might reasonably contest. In other words, the writer must take a stand on an issue or make a claim that can be defended. Thesis Stat e ments
  • 27. Analytical Thesis Statement A thesis statement that analyzes the relationship among various significant ideas contained in the thesis sentence(s) Thesis Stat e ments
  • 28. Structure of Analytical Thesis Statements This pattern can serve as an aid: Independent clause(s) + restricting clause(s) [general ideas are stated] [qualifying idea(s) defined] Thesis Stat e ments
  • 29. Structure of Analytical Thesis Statements Example: “ University education is more beneficial than technical training [ independent / generalization ] because at the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature [ restricting idea ] . ” Thesis Stat e ments
  • 30.
  • 31. If you have a good analytical thesis statement, creating an outline is relatively easy. O utlining
  • 32. O utlining “ A thesis statement focuses both the writer’s and reader’s attention on specific issues to be developed within an essay.” In addition, analytical thesis statements analyze the relationship among these significant ideas. As you can see, it is fairly easy to isolate ideas that should be developed in your essay.
  • 33.
  • 34. O utlining From Thesis Statement to Outline Example: “ University education is more beneficial than technical training [ independent / generalization ] because at the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature [ restricting idea ] . ”
  • 35. From Thesis Statement to Outline Example: We immediately recognize that the driving organizational force behind the thesis statement is comparison & contrast . At the most general level, we are comparing & contrasting university education to technical training. O utlining
  • 36.
  • 37. From Thesis Statement to Outline Example: There is one more key idea that is implicit in the thesis statement (this would be easily recognizable using informal logic): “ Acquiring perspectives on life in addition to technical and career related skills is more beneficial than acquiring only technical and career related skills.” O utlining
  • 38.
  • 39. From Thesis Statement to Outline Let’s not forget our implicit key idea: “ Acquiring perspectives on life in addition to technical and career related skills is more beneficial than acquiring only technical and career related skills.” O utlining
  • 40. From Thesis Statement to Outline Now, let’s try to think through this a different way: by using informal logic . Look at logic handouts. O utlining
  • 41. O utlining Deductive conclusion Inductive premise From Thesis Statement to Outline “ University education is more beneficial than technical training [ independent / generalization ] because at the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature [ restricting idea ] . ”
  • 42. Syllogism: Inductive Premise 1 : At the university the students have the opportunity to learn technical and career related skills as well as to acquire perspectives on life from studying subjects like philosophy, art, and literature Premise 2: ? Deductive conclusion : University education is more beneficial than technical training O utlining
  • 43. From Thesis Statement to Outline Syllogism: Inductive Premise 2: Acquiring perspectives on life in addition to technical and career related skills is more beneficial than acquiring only technical and career related skills. O utlining