how to start a thesis in an essay
You may have heard of something called a “thesis.” It’s what seniors commonly refer to as their final paper before graduation. That’s not what we’re talking about here. That type of thesis is a long, well-written paper that takes years to piece together.
The thesis statement should do more than merely announce the topic; it must reveal what position you will take in relation to that topic, how you plan to analyze/evaluate the subject or the issue. In short, instead of merely stating a general fact or resorting to a simplistic pro/con statement, you must decide what it is you have to say.
The opposite of a focused, narrow, crisp thesis is a broad, sprawling, superficial thesis. Compare this original thesis (too general) with three possible revisions (more focused, each presenting a different approach to the same topic):
An effective thesis cannot be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.” A thesis is not a topic; nor is it a fact; nor is it an opinion. “Reasons for the fall of communism” is a topic. “Communism collapsed in Eastern Europe” is a fact known by educated people. “The fall of communism is the best thing that ever happened in Europe” is an opinion. (Superlatives like “the best” almost always lead to trouble. It’s impossible to weigh every “thing” that ever happened in Europe. And what about the fall of Hitler? Couldn’t that be “the best thing”?)
A good thesis has two parts. It should tell what you plan to argue, and it should “telegraph” how you plan to argue—that is, what particular support for your claim is going where in your essay.
This is the research process! The answer to your question is likely to change as you discover more evidence and sources. As you write the paper, keep developing and refining your thesis statement.
If your paper only aims to explain and discuss the facts of a topic, your thesis statement should summarize the main points that you will cover.
There are a few crucial steps for creating a great thesis statement:
Show your main idea early in the essay. Place a thesis in the introductory paragraph of the article to set up your position. It will help readers to understand the subject. Don’t bury a great idea in the middle of a paragraph or at the end of your article. Avoid vague words & phrases such as “My point is”, “In my opinion”.