How to Write a Good Essay

A thesis statement is the main point that the content of your essay will support.

It is an contestable assertion, usually made in one or two sentences, that makes a clear argument about your research topic.

For example:

Story-telling should be incorporated into the curriculum of early childhood education programs in order to encourage language development in young children.

A good thesis statement will:

  • Assert a strong position that can be challenged and debated, rather than merely describing or stating facts that cannot be contested
  • Form a complete sentence that clearly explains to the reader the overall direction of the essay
  • Be sufficiently narrow rather than broad, so the topic can be adequately addressed in the essay
  • Communicate a single, overarching point rather than multiple points that may be too difficult or broad to support
  • Be clear and specific, as opposed to overly vague, open-ended, or general

Learn how to craft an effective thesis statement in this short video:

Avoid these common mistakes when formulating a thesis statement::

Error:

Example:

Corrected Version:

> Thesis is too broad or general in scope for the length of an essay.

> An individual's family upbringing impacts their adult life.

> An individual's family upbringing has less impact on their personality traits than environmental factors such as peer influence.

> Thesis is too vague or presents a truism that is not debatable.

The Canadian healthcare system currently faces many challenges.

The Canadian government should set limits on healthcare expenditures to encourage innovation in how the system handles emerging challenges.

> Thesis announces the topic rather than forming an argument.

This essay will discuss the marketing potential of social media.

Companies should exploit the marketing potential of social media by using applications like Twitter for advertising and customer service. 


Follow the links below to learn more about crafting a strong thesis statement:

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Standard Essay Outline

1) Thesis Statement

A.  Supporting Argument/Idea #1

B.  Supporting Argument/Idea #2

C. Supporting Argument/Idea #3

D. Conclusion/Transitional Device

2) Topic Sentence for Supporting Idea #1

A. 

B. 

C.

D. Conclusion/Transitional Device

3) Topic Sentence for Supporting Idea #2

A. 

B. 

C.

D. Conclusion/Transitional Device

4) Topic Sentence for Supporting Idea #3

A. 

B. 

C.

D. Conclusion/Transitional Device

5) Conclusion/Restatement of Thesis

A. 

B. 

C.

D. Strong Concluding Sentence