What’s Your Thesis? ANNANDALE WRITING CENTER CG 409 What is a Thesis Statement? Thesis literally means, “a statement to be proved.” It is not self-evident. It needs “to be proved.” It requires support. Your thesis statement is the main point or central claim of your paper. Your thesis is the reason your paper exists. Without a thesis, you do not have a paper. Thesis Statements and Assignments The assignment influences your reader’s expectations. Thus, your thesis will be influenced by your assignment. Certain assignments demand certain thesis statements. Informative/Expository No Opinion; : reader should be interested. Argumentative: Judgment/Opinion; reader could disagree Analytical: Evaluation based on criteria; reader could disagree and should be interested Make sure your thesis is … Appropriate for the Assignment and Reader’s Expectations Perfectly Clear to the Reader Does the reader know what your paper is about? Detailed and Specific Does the reader know the “why” behind your thesis? “Most countries have Daylight Savings Time.” But why? “Daylight Savings Time should be eliminated.” But why? “Daylight Savings Time has mixed results.” But why? And what results? To check your thesis, ask … What kind of thesis does the reader expect? Does the reader expect information about a subject, an evaluation of a subject, or an opinion about a subject? If someone read only your thesis, would he or she know what your paper is about? Also, would he or she know the specific reasons “why” you wrote this particular thesis? Make sure your thesis is … “All – Present” and “All – Powerful” Every sentence in the essay should support or prove your Thesis Statement (which makes it “all-powerful”). Thus, your Thesis is “present” throughout the essay. For Example Introduction: “My father’s sister, Jane, has always been there for me. She is the person I admire most.” Thesis: “I admire Aunt Jane because she is hard-working, humble, and generous.” 1st¶: “Aunt Jane works long hours at two different jobs.” 2nd¶: “She has achieved a lot, but Aunt Jane is humble.” 3rd¶: “Aunt Jane’s generosity knows no bounds.” Conclusion: “There are few people like Aunt Jane.” Restated Thesis: “My Aunt Jane’s hard-work, humility, and generosity have earned my undying admiration.” Questions? If you would like to work on a thesis statement, please feel free to stay. A workshop leader will provide assistance upon request.