Student Thesis Statements

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Thesis statements are one sentence long and are focused, clear, declarative, and written in third person voice.

Read the sections below for more information and view examples.

Every history paper has a big idea that serves as an umbrella for all the evidence included in the essay.

That umbrella is the argument, or the position the paper aims to prove within the essay.

For example, a thesis statement on the causes of the American Civil War might be: “While there were several specific causes of the Civil War, the overriding cause was the issues of the powers of the federal government vs.

states’ rights.” The reader now knows that you are going to “prove” this main point in the body of your work.Now that you've learned about your topic through background research and developed your topic into a research question, you can formulate a solid thesis statement.The thesis statement can be looked at as the answer to your research question.Weak Thesis: The lack of funding in public schools is a major issue in the American education system.Stronger Thesis: Underfunding arts programs in public schools does not adequately prepare students for college.Present your position or point of view as a statement or declarative sentence.Your research question helped guide your initial searching so you could learn more about your topic.Now that you have completed that step, you can extract a thesis statement based on the research you have discovered.Weak Thesis: Does car exhaust impact climate change?For graduate students, who are looking at their theses and dissertations for a Master’s or Ph.D., the thesis statement is usually housed in a research question or problem.

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