Every essay, from high school to university, requires a thesis statement. Depending on the ambition and length of the essay, a thesis can be simple or complex. A simple essay may include one sentence that contains one topic and one argument. E.x. “Worms are harmful to plants because of their toxic emissions.” Worms are the subject, and harmful emissions are the argument you will be defending.
Even if you aren't majoring in literature or journalism, chances are you will have to write an essay. Something that is quite frequent in schools is that teachers don't outright state they want a thesis when handing out essay homeworks. This can be pretty stressful for some students. There is no need to worry, writing a thesis is not only easy but fun as well.
Before we move to good thesis statement examples, let’s find out what a thesis statement is, in the first place.
Simply put, thesis is your argument summed up in 1-2 sentences. Whatever subject your essay or any other academic paper will cover goes into the thesis. For instance, when writing about the medical benefits of snail extracts a good thesis will be “Extract from common garden snails is proven to fight aging and have a positive effect on a sun-scarred skin.” Not only does this statement cover the entirety of your essay but it also directs your readers to two effects of the garden snail extract. This thesis also shows your position on the subject; you are pro snail extract.
Your thesis should function as a map for readers. If it's too weak, it won't grab the attention of whoever picked it up. If it's too forceful, there is a risk of alienating your audience. You aren't attacking your reader or even convincing them. You are attempting to persuade them. The difference between persuading and convincing someone is that one tries to change the subject's mind while the other gathers facts and shows your point of view.
All in all, when looking for thesis statement examples for essays, it is important to remember the following tips:
Tip#1 A thesis should not be a statement of belief. You are using academical arguments to convince your readers in the strength of your position. A good thesis cannot be your personal belief like religion or motto.
Tip#2 A thesis cannot be a statement of the obvious. Writing things like “People wear shoes” is painfully obvious. It isn't something that you can argue for even by using hundreds of Academic Journals.
Tip#3 When in doubt refer to the Orson Welles' Rules of Writing. These are the staple of every writer's career.
1. Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figures of speech which you are used to seeing in print.
2. Do not use complex words where simple ones will do. If you can cut a word out, cut it out without any doubt.
3. Never use the passive where you can use the active.
4. Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.
5. Feel free to violate any of these rules to make your writing smoother.
These rules can be applied to more than just a thesis. Their existence has helped many a mediocre writer excel over time and improve their writing style. Pay attention to the last one: “Break any of these rules.” While there are certainly a lot of rules in English writing (especially higher up in the Academic fields) more often than not writers are encouraged to step out of the box and experiment. No great writer ever became great by conforming to just the basics. So, use or break these rules at your own discretion.
Remember: your audience isn't the entire world. In most cases, the person whose interest you are trying to capture is your teacher. Not your fellow students but your teacher. They are the ones that give out grades, after all. Your teacher has already read everything and is most likely already familiar with the subject of your essay. So don't try to surprise them with something new or original. Stick to facts and Academic Journals that support your claims. Don't make your thesis with the goal of winning over the world on your side. That is a recipe for disaster.
To have a clear and concise thesis, avoid burying it in the middle of a bloated paragraph. If a thesis is one to two sentence long, having it in the middle of a ten line paragraph will make it weak and easy to avoid. Try to position it at the beginning of the first paragraph or the very end. Keep in mind the invisible psychological rule for every reader: if the first paragraph doesn't catch our eye, we are more likely to stop reading.
A good way to make your thesis stand out is to position it right after the hook. A hook is a writing device used to attract attention. It can be anything from a shocking sentence to a well-known fact with a funny twist. This is probably where writers have the most freedom to have fun when writing an essay. Putting your thesis right after the hook will ensure that the reader doesn't just glance over it. The reason is: if the hook is good, the reader will read it several times. Your thesis included.
Avoid stating things like: “Ever since the dawn of time” or “Humans have always”. Those are horrible thesis statement examples. First off, nothing has ever happened since the dawn of creation, English language included. Secondly, educated people have existed for a few thousand years max, so the span of forever is very inaccurate.
Essay thesis statement should be precise and to the point without added clichès. Avoid words like ‘maybe,’ ‘perhaps,’ and ‘so.’ These words give off an air of underconfidence. You want to persuade with the arguments you've gathered not make a guess.
Your thesis should state what your paper will be about and then lead the reader into the first argument. Keep it concise and tight without ‘chewing the fat.’ Keep in mind the topic of your research and whether you have a certain amount of pages that need to be covered. Shape the topic so it doesn't stray too far from your subject. A poor thesis will contain a lot of extra information that is unneeded for an essay.
E.x. ‘Bees contribute to the pollination of roses that in turn help fight pollution created by big trucks.’
Bees are your main subject and pollination of roses is the main topic. Air pollution is an added subject that will hinder the writing progress and require a lot of additional sources to support. These sort of statements are heavy and bloated, which makes them poor thesis statement examples for research papers. It's not impossible to work with it, but an average reader will get bored fast if they have to pay attention to two separate issues.
Don't choose a subject like “Global Warming” or “Healthy Lifestyle.” These subjects are way too broad and lack any sort of focus. What part of global warming are you analyzing? Which industry has caused the most damage? What about healthy living: are you going to point out working out is good for you or be an advocate for organic eating? Including all of these in your paper is impossible - you'll just end up with a hundred pages of gibberish. If you must write about a subject similar to ‘Global Warming’ identify one element to work with and stick to it.
Any good argument worth its salt will have a good counter-argument. That's how you get a proper discussion. To get on top of this; craft your thesis and essay in anticipation to what a reader might think. For example, if you are arguing for puppies against cats as house pets, be prepared for a reader to think that they like cats more. Include examples of dogs as superior pets. Include examples of cats misbehaving or causing trouble. Be mindful not to use harsh language or outright state your opinion.
Remember: a thesis is not your opinion or belief. It's a statement that is backed up by arguments and sources. All good examples of a thesis statement WILL follow this logic.
A thesis is the backbone of a good essay. If you craft a strong thesis, it will be easier for you to write the rest of your paper by using the thesis as a guide. Your reader will also have an easier time following your trail of thoughts. Like everything, practice makes perfect. The more you write, the easier it will become to identify and write a thesis. If ever in doubt turn to your guidance counselor or student center for help. Many schools and universities offer help with homework or papers. They won't write your thesis for you, but they will help you develop it on your own.