Bad: Reading can develop a child’s analytical mind.
– Words like “can,” aren’t strong enough. This thesis statement begs the question of how? If you’re about to write several paragraphs (or pages) about a topic make sure you can confidently defend every point you make.
Good: Reading develops a child’s mind by fostering comprehension skills, increasing vocabulary, and exposing them to new worlds they might not otherwise encounter.
– Now, we’ve not just stated that reading is good, we’ve provided a sampling of all the benefits we’re about to bring to light in our paper.
A good thesis statement is developed from the point of view of the reader. Be very careful you’re not developing a topic that is of interest to you alone. This is a harsh yet necessary question to ask yourself: will my readers have any reason to care about what I’m writing?
Slang, abbreviations, and poor spelling have no place in a clear thesis statement. Use professional language to make your point.
Improved thesis: To be a quality comedian, you must develop your craft in a way that inspires laughter and smiles at every performance.
Better Thesis 2: The “fighting words” exception to free speech is not legitimate because it wrongly considers speech as an action.
Better Thesis 2: None of the arguments in favor of regulating pornography are persuasive because they all base their points on the unverifiable and questionable assumption that the producers of pornography necessarily harbor ill will specifically to women.
A good thesis should provide a direct answer to the question being asked or the assignment given. If your essay prompt asks you to discuss reasons for America’s entry into World War II, then a good thesis statement gives a complete, one-sentence response to the question, such as, “The previously neutral United States was forced into involvement in World War II by an attack from Japan and declarations of war from both Germany and Italy.” This sentence could stand alone as an answer to the question and needs only to be backed up by facts and details in the essay’s body. A statement such as, “The United States entered World War II for a number of reasons,” provides no clear answer to the prompt and could not stand alone as a short answer.
A convincing essay is like a good argument — it takes a position and sets out to support that position with facts. A thesis statement is a sentence that clearly lays out this argument in the essay’s introduction. A strong thesis helps provide the framework for making a strong argument.
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