What Is a Thesis Statement? Definition and Examples.
What Is a Thesis Statement?
A thesis statement is a declaration
of one or two sentences that gives the topic and purpose of an essay or speech.
More specifically, it provides information to the audience about what the
author/speaker intends to prove or declare, with specific discussion points.
The thesis statement is usually placed toward the end of the introductory
What Should a Thesis Statement Include?
Regardless of the type of paper or
speech you’re writing, a strong thesis statement should include the following
of the Topic: You should state the main topic of your dissertation before your thesis statement, usually
within the first or second sentence. The proceeding thesis statement should
then refer back to this topic.
of Your Position: After restating the main topic of your essay, declare
your personal viewpoint on the issue.
Opposing Viewpoint: Many topics are quite controversial, such as abortion,
the death penalty, and vaccines, and can include a myriad of perspectives. An
effective thesis statement is one that offers an opposing viewpoint, even if
the main topic isn’t debatable. For example, if the main topic of your essay is
about how pollution is harmful to the environment, your thesis might give your
personal opinions of the worst effects of pollution. These opinions are what
will have opposing viewpoints.
to Support Your Stance: For a strong thesis, it’s not enough to simply
state what you believe; you have to provide reasons for that belief. In a
standard five-paragraph essay, having at least three reasons/discussion points
is sufficient to support your thesis.
to Support Your Stance: Whether your intentions are to persuade, inform,
entertain, or educate your audience, make sure your thesis includes evidence
from credible sources to support your discussion points.
Structuring Your Thesis Statement
When writing a thesis statement for the first time, it’s
important to understand how to structure it. Answering the following questions
may help. Use your responses to write your statement, keeping each component in
the same order as your answers. Keep in mind that #2 and 3 can be reversed, as
in the examples in the next section.
What is your essay about?
What opinion/belief do you wish to convey on
What is one other belief (preferably a common
one) on this topic?
Why do you hold your beliefs on the topic (give
What evidence do you have to support each of
Thesis Statement Examples
The following is a list of topics that are commonly selected
for high school or college essays, as well as an example thesis statement for
each topic. Each of these examples contains a mention of the topic, a reference
to an opposing viewpoint, a declaration of the writer’s personal beliefs on the
issue, and a list of reasons to support the beliefs.
Please note, these
statements are intended for example purposes only and may or may not include
actual facts about the topics.
Legalization of Marijuana: While there are some benefits of marijuana, this
drug should be illegal in all 50 states because it’s addictive, it can lead to
psychotic disorders, and legalizing it can pose a risk for contamination.
Mandates: Despite the claims of masks being used as a preventive measure
against COVID-19, mask mandates should be banned worldwide because they
infringe on personal rights, masks can be dangerous, and masks are proven to be
ineffective in preventing infection.
Ketogenic Diet: Although the ketogenic diet is rising in popularity, it
should not be used as a long-term means of weight loss/maintenance because there
are negative side effects, carbohydrates boost the release of serotine, and
you’re more likely to eat an unhealthy amount of red meat.
Healthcare: The Unites States does not currently offer universal
healthcare, but it should because doing so would increase the average lifespan,
improve overall public health, and create more jobs.
While most Americans eat meat and enjoy it, vegetarianism is a better diet
option because you won’t be contributing to animal cruelty, you can have more
protection against certain diseases, and it will be easier for you to consume
the vitamins that your body needs.