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How to write a good thesis statement


A persuasive or argumentative piece of writing has to begin with a debatable claim or argument. The thesis statement has to be something that rational people have differing opinions about. If a person's thesis statement is something that is accepted or agreed upon frequently as a fact, then there is no reason to try and persuade people.

Avoid non-debatable thesis statements

To learn how to write a good thesis statement, you must understand the difference between a non-debatable thesis statement and a questionable one. When someone says 'pollution is harmful to the environment,' he/she is stating a fact. The thesis statement is, therefore, not debatable. It is not debatable because pollution has no positive aspects. Every scholar agrees that pollution is problematic. They only differ with regards to the impact the problem has on the environment or its effect on living organisms. No one has ever argued that pollution is positive, because it's a known fact that it's not.

Debatable thesis statements

If a person says '20% of the government's budget should be used to limit pollution,' a reasonable person might disagree with him/her. It all depends on someone's opinions; some individuals might think that the money should be spent on education while others blame corporations, and believe that they should be the ones paying to limit pollution, not the government. This is an example of a debatable thesis statement.

Use narrow instead of general thesis statements

In learning how to write a good thesis statement, you will learn that the narrower a thesis statement is, the more effective your argument becomes. You have to use evidence to support your claim or argument. The broader your claim is, the more tedious it is to convince readers to believe your proposition.

Example of a General Thesis Statement

For example, a general thesis might state, "use of drugs is detrimental to communities." It is confusing since 'drugs' encompasses a lot of things. It is unclear whether the thesis statement means illegal drugs, medicinal drugs, or recreational drug use such as cigarettes and alcohol. It could even mean all drugs in general. Secondly, the author fails to explain why drugs are considered detrimental to the society. Drugs might be harmful to a community because they are causing deaths, perhaps from drug-related violence or overdoses, changing the moral climate or even leading to economic decline.

Clearly define terms

The author also has to define precisely the term "communities." Is the term communities used in this context intended to mean the American community or does it include other communities around the world? Is there any distinction between drug effect on adults and on children? Therefore, the claim leaves many unsolved questions, which the author cannot adequately cover. The general nature of the allegation opens the way for these possibilities. If the author had stated that the "use of illegal drugs is discouraged since it leads to gang violence," such a claim could have been manageable because it is easy to prove or disapprove.

Different types of claims

There are different types of claims. They Include:

  1. Cause and effect claims
  2. Fact or definition claims
  3. Claims about value
  4. Claims about policies or solutions

It is essential to determine which claim is best for your argument, that is, depending on what you know about the topic, your stand, your audience, and the context of your investigation. No matter the claim you choose to use, making proper use of it is crucial to indicating your stand early in the paper.

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