structuring a 5 paragraph essay

Video book reports are a great way to include multiple modes of communication through imagery, video, sound, and tone. This WeVideo Template is included in.

Statement of fact: Foul language is common in movies. Arguable thesis statement: The amount of foul language in movies is disproportionate to the amount of foul language in real life. State ment of fact: Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease.

Thesis statement formula

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Developing a thesis statement – The Writing Center – UW–Madison

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This fragment not only announces your subject, but it focuses on one segment of the population: elementary school children. Furthermore, it raises a subject upon which reasonable people could disagree, because while most people might agree that children consume more sugar than they used to, not everyone would agree on what should be done or who should do it. Take a position on the topic.

After reflecting on the topic a little while longer, you decide that what you really want to say about this topic is that something should be done to reduce the amount of sugar these children consume. More attention should be paid to the food and beverage choices available to elementary school children. This statement asserts your position, but the terms more attention and food and beverage choices are vague. Use specific language. You decide to explain what you mean about food and beverage choices , so you write:.

Experts estimate that half of elementary school children consume nine times the recommended daily allowance of sugar. It merely reports a statistic instead of making an assertion. Make an assertion based on clearly stated support. You finally revise your thesis statement one more time to look like this:.


  1. Developing A Thesis.
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  3. Thesis statements/Research questions/Problem statements.

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. Your thesis changed to reflect your new insights. Remember that your thesis needs to show your conclusions about a subject. For example, if you are writing a paper for a class on fitness, you might be asked to choose a popular weight-loss product to evaluate.

Here are two thesis statements:. This is a weak thesis statement. First, it fails to take a stand. Second, the phrase negative and positive aspects is vague. Because Banana Herb Tea Supplement promotes rapid weight loss that results in the loss of muscle and lean body mass, it poses a potential danger to customers.

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Tips on Writing a Thesis Statement

Your thesis should indicate the point of the discussion. If your assignment is to write a paper on kinship systems, using your own family as an example, you might come up with either of these two thesis statements:. This is a weak thesis because it merely states an observation. While most American families would view consanguineal marriage as a threat to the nuclear family structure, many Iranian families, like my own, believe that these marriages help reinforce kinship ties in an extended family.

Pinpoint and replace all nonspecific words, such as people , everything , society , or life , with more precise words in order to reduce any vagueness. Working thesis: Young people have to work hard to succeed in life. Revised thesis: Recent college graduates must have discipline and persistence in order to find and maintain a stable job in which they can use and be appreciated for their talents. The revised thesis makes a more specific statement about success and what it means to work hard. The original includes too broad a range of people and does not define exactly what success entails.

By replacing those general words like people and work hard , the writer can better focus his or her research and gain more direction in his or her writing. Clarify ideas that need explanation by asking yourself questions that narrow your thesis. Working thesis: The welfare system is a joke.

Revised thesis: The welfare system keeps a socioeconomic class from gaining employment by alluring members of that class with unearned income, instead of programs to improve their education and skill sets. A joke means many things to many people. Readers bring all sorts of backgrounds and perspectives to the reading process and would need clarification for a word so vague.

This expression may also be too informal for the selected audience. By asking questions, the writer can devise a more precise and appropriate explanation for joke. The writer should ask himself or herself questions similar to the 5WH questions. By incorporating the answers to these questions into a thesis statement, the writer more accurately defines his or her stance, which will better guide the writing of the essay.

Replace any linking verbs A verb that connects or links the subject of a sentence to a noun or adjective. Linking verbs are forms of the verb to be , a verb that simply states that a situation exists. Working thesis: Kansas City schoolteachers are not paid enough. Revised thesis: The Kansas City legislature cannot afford to pay its educators, resulting in job cuts and resignations in a district that sorely needs highly qualified and dedicated teachers.

The linking verb in this working thesis statement is the word are. Linking verbs often make thesis statements weak because they do not express action. Rather, they connect words and phrases to the second half of the sentence. The writer should ask himself or herself questions in order to replace the linking verb with an action verb, thus forming a stronger thesis statement, one that takes a more definitive stance on the issue:.

Many girls have strict parents, dress appropriately, and do not engage in sexual activity while in middle school and high school. The writer of this thesis should ask the following questions:. You then completed a freewriting exercise about an event you recently experienced and chose a general topic to write about.

Using that general topic, you then narrowed it down by answering the 5WH questions. After you answered these questions, you chose one of the three methods of prewriting and gathered possible supporting points for your working thesis statement. Now, on a separate sheet of paper, write down your working thesis statement. Identify any weaknesses in this sentence and revise the statement to reflect the elements of a strong thesis statement.

Make sure it is specific, precise, arguable, demonstrable, forceful, and confident. Please share with a classmate and compare your answers.


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  • In your career you may have to write a project proposal that focuses on a particular problem in your company, such as reinforcing the tardiness policy. The proposal would aim to fix the problem; using a thesis statement would clearly state the boundaries of the problem and tell the goals of the project. After writing the proposal, you may find that the thesis needs revision to reflect exactly what is expressed in the body. Using the techniques from this chapter would apply to revising that thesis.

    Previous Section. Table of Contents. Next Section. Revise your thesis statement. Elements of a Thesis Statement For every essay you write, you must focus on a central idea. A Strong Thesis Statement A strong thesis statement contains the following qualities. Tip Even in a personal essay that allows the use of first person, your thesis should not contain phrases such as in my opinion or I believe. Exercise 1 On a separate sheet of paper, write a thesis statement for each of the following topics. Examples of Appropriate Thesis Statements Each of the following thesis statements meets several of the following requirements: Specificity Precision Ability to be argued Ability to be demonstrated Forcefulness Confidence The societal and personal struggles of Troy Maxon in the play Fences symbolize the challenge of black males who lived through segregation and integration in the United States.

    Closing all American borders for a period of five years is one solution that will tackle illegal immigration. Compared to an absolute divorce, no-fault divorce is less expensive, promotes fairer settlements, and reflects a more realistic view of the causes for marital breakdown. Exposing children from an early age to the dangers of drug abuse is a sure method of preventing future drug addicts.