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Creative research & paper writing

A Tutorial on How to Write a Thesis Sentence for a Research Paper

Writing a great research paper requires establishing a strong and claim and then proving the argument with examples of research and logical reasoning. A good thesis sentence is your guideline through the research paper. Unfortunately, too many students struggle with writing an effective thesis sentence, and invariably struggle with writing a great research paper.

Use this brief tutorial to help you write a great thesis sentence for your research paper:

Keep it simple: Your thesis shouldn’t be difficult to understand or contain any confusing language. The best thesis statements are single sentences with only one or two subjects and a single verb. When drafting your thesis try stating your argument as concisely and clearly as you can within a single phrase. Build from this draft.

Answer a question: There are times when you will be given a prompt for your research, but mostly this type of assignment will let you write on just about any topic within a specific subject. When this is the case be sure you stay focused on answering a question. What are you trying to prove? Asking yourself several questions about a topic will help you determine whether you have a thesis that makes a claim or not.

Keep your topic narrow: Keep your thesis statement focused on a single and limited aspect within a subject. For example, instead of writing about just “sports” you may want to write about “soccer”. Or you might find it even more helpful to narrow your topic further and write about “soccer in the U.K”. Narrowing your topic makes your research manageable and makes for a well-written and well-thought thesis.

Be flexible: It’s always a good idea to draft a thesis before you conduct your research so that you have a frame to work within. But don’t hesitate to modify your thesis statement, either slightly or entirely, if in the process of your research you find other stronger possibilities on which to write on.

Get your thesis approved: Showing your draft thesis to your instructor before starting your research will ensure that you are working on something of value that your instructor will appreciate. You may even get some research advice or a few sources to check out. If your instructor suggests revising your draft thesis in any way, be sure to listen. Staying within your instructors specifications gives you a better chance of getting a good grade.

Don’t apologize: Don’t write “In my opinion” or “My interpretations”. These statements are useless because your reader will already know this about the argument you present. After all, who else’s opinion would this be? The argument you are making should be apparent throughout the paper. Don’t weaken your writing with these apologies.