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Providing Your Paper Focus. What is a Thesis Statement? Why do You Need One? Writing a Good...

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Providing Your Paper Focus
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Page 1: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

Providing Your Paper Focus

Page 2: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

What is a Thesis Statement? Why do You Need One? Writing a Good Thesis Statement 4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement

Page 3: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

A Thesis Statement is a one (or two) sentence summary of the argument or study that follows in the paper.

Almost all readers---even if we don’t do it consciously---look early in an essay or article for this summary.

Page 4: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

To test your ideas by squeezing them into a sentence or two.

To better organize and develop your argument.

To provide your reader with a “guide” to your argument.

Page 5: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

First, reduce your assignment to a single question.• Assigned Topic:

Write a report describing how a character from S.E. Hinton’s “The Outsiders” changes.

• Unassigned Topic Write about a theme from S.E. Hinton’s “The

Outsiders.” Then, write your answer to the

question using a complex sentence.

Page 6: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

A good thesis statement will usually do four things:• Take on a subject upon which reasonable

people could disagree (it’s “testable”)• Deal with a subject that can be dealt with in

the nature/scope of the assignment• Express one main idea• Assert your conclusion about a subject (can

be supported with facts)

Page 7: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

List general ideas of interest.• “Sugar Consumption”

Narrow the topic.• “Reducing sugar consumption by

elementary school children.” Take a position on a topic.

• More attention should be paid to the food and beverage choices available to elementary school children.

Page 8: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

Use specific language.• Experts estimate that half of elementary

school children consume nine times the recommended daily allowance of sugar.

Make an assertion based on clearly stated support.• Because half of all American elementary

school children consume nine times the recommended daily allowance of sugar, schools should be required to replace the beverages in soda machines with healthy alternatives.

Page 9: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

1: A strong thesis statement takes some sort of stand.WEAK STRONG

There are some good and bad things about safaris.

Because safari tours in Burundi promote nature conservation and the developing Burundi economy, they should be taken by all who can afford it.

Page 10: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

2: A strong thesis statement justifies discussion.

WEAK STRONG There are many

environmental issues in Tunisia.

While most Americans view global climate change as creating bad weather, many Tunisian are suffering a direct loss of home, and in some cases life, because of the changing environment.

Page 11: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

3: A strong thesis statement expresses one main idea.WEAK STRONG

Zambia has many great sports, and the government is improving so you can visit its capital.

Because the Zambian government is investing money into their national soccer team, the capital city of Lusaka has become a safe and exciting place to visit.

Page 12: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

4: A strong thesis is specific.

WEAK STRONG World hunger has

many causes and effects.

Hunger persists in Angola because of the lack of a strong central government and farming in the infertile soil is rarely profitable.

Page 13: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

A Thesis Statement tells the reader what is to follow.

A Thesis Statement provides the writer with organization and purpose.

A Thesis Statement can be viewed as the answer to the question an assignment asks you to answer.

Page 14: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

A Good Thesis Statement Has Four Traits:• It takes some sort of stand.• It justifies the discussion.• It expresses one main idea.• It is specific.

Also:• Is a grammatically correct complex sentence• Can be “tested”• Can be supported with facts

Page 15: Providing Your Paper Focus.  What is a Thesis Statement?  Why do You Need One?  Writing a Good Thesis Statement  4 Traits of a Strong Thesis Statement.

Complete the brainstorming activity for your country.

Develop two strong Thesis Statements with supporting subtopics.


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