Be Friends with your Thesis Statement :)


I have heard many students complaining about writing thesis statements for their essays. And even, from my own 2-semester-experience as a writing consultant at the Write Space, ADA’s Writing Center, I have seen many students, especially those taking writing courses, coming to their consultation with a “complete” draft but no thesis statement. Poor thesis statement! If only students knew what good friends they could be with their thesis statement. L How come writing 3-4 page-long essays is possible but when it comes to the poor thesis statement of one-to-two-sentences, they feel desperately sticky? I wrote quite a few essays, in my English preparation year, without outlines, but never without a thesis statement.

I think composing a decent thesis statement should never be a chore. And, indeed, it is not. There may be many reasons why some students do not feel like writing a thesis statement even when they are done with the rest of their paper. In my opinion, the reasons vary from students’ thinking of writing essays as a difficult job to insufficient vocabulary. However, putting everything aside, it is not difficult, and it should not feel like a chore. For instance, I’ll try to help compose a simple but nice thesis statement for two types of essay writing: Critical-analytical essay and Balanced/Argumentative essay.

For the critical analysis essay, I see, you are most probably assigned by your professor an article to read, examine, and write your own critique. If you are okay with the assignment but stuck on the “thesis statement” part, then your generous friend (which herein refers to ^_^ me ^_^) wants to help you with the following starters below:

This paper is going to analyze …

  • This paper will critically examine positive and negative sides of….
  • This critique will show strengths and weaknesses of/in…
  • The analytical review will try to investigate both merits and drawbacks of…
  • This essay will critically analyze the views on the “…” in the essay “…” written by…

NB: By the way, please keep in mind that some writing instructors do not accept a thesis statement that starts with “This paper will analyze”. Therefore, it is always good to get advice first from your instructor about what kind of thesis statement he or she would like to see on your paper. You can also use the following ways to write a thesis statement for critical analysis essay:

Although there are negative points in the essay such as …, it is worth mentioning the positive sides such as …

  • The drawbacks of arguments presented in the article weaken the author’s credibility, however, the merits of the article such as … make the article worth reading.

For Balanced/Argumentative essay you might want to help yourself with the following:

  • Although the common wisdom helps us to understand the views presented by “…”, there are still several points that should be examined in detail.
  • Although the author takes one-sided approach to the issue of “…”, there are still other insights that shed light on the controversial issue of…
  • Notwithstanding the strengths of article “…”, it is also possible to show several weak points presented by “…”
  • In spite of the fact that the author asserts that …, it is unclear how the point on …may influence …

These are just a few examples. You may well come up with many others worth being in the place of thesis statement. And try to practice more and more on how to construct a thesis statement for different kinds of essays. It’s not that difficult. What is difficult is just taking a pen or a pencil with a sheet of paper! Or just your laptop. 😀

Uh-huh, one more thing to keep in mind: it’s always too risky, so quit the habit of writing essays without thesis statement. Thesis is a cloth that is to cover bodies. I am sure just like anyone, you would never dare to go out naked 😜

Ulvi - Profile for The Write Space

Ulvi is an International Relations student at ADA University. He works as a consultant at ADA Writing Centre. He is not limited to a particular set of interests. He is always trying to catch the joy of the moment.

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