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- How to Write a Thesis Statement | 4 Steps & Examples
How to Write a Thesis Statement | 4 Steps & Examples
Published on January 11, 2019 by Shona McCombes . Revised on September 14, 2022 by Eoghan Ryan.
A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . It usually comes near the end of your introduction .
Your thesis will look a bit different depending on the type of essay you’re writing. But the thesis statement should always clearly state the main idea you want to get across. Everything else in your essay should relate back to this idea.
You can write your thesis statement by following four simple steps:
- Start with a question
- Write your initial answer
- Develop your answer
- Refine your thesis statement
Table of contents
What is a thesis statement, placement of the thesis statement, step 1: start with a question, step 2: write your initial answer, step 3: develop your answer, step 4: refine your thesis statement, types of thesis statements, frequently asked questions about thesis statements.
A thesis statement summarizes the central points of your essay. It is a signpost telling the reader what the essay will argue and why.
The best thesis statements are:
- Concise: A good thesis statement is short and sweet—don’t use more words than necessary. State your point clearly and directly in one or two sentences.
- Contentious: Your thesis shouldn’t be a simple statement of fact that everyone already knows. A good thesis statement is a claim that requires further evidence or analysis to back it up.
- Coherent: Everything mentioned in your thesis statement must be supported and explained in the rest of your paper.
The thesis statement generally appears at the end of your essay introduction or research paper introduction .
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You should come up with an initial thesis, sometimes called a working thesis , early in the writing process . As soon as you’ve decided on your essay topic , you need to work out what you want to say about it—a clear thesis will give your essay direction and structure.
You might already have a question in your assignment, but if not, try to come up with your own. What would you like to find out or decide about your topic?
For example, you might ask:
After some initial research, you can formulate a tentative answer to this question. At this stage it can be simple, and it should guide the research process and writing process .
Now you need to consider why this is your answer and how you will convince your reader to agree with you. As you read more about your topic and begin writing, your answer should get more detailed.
In your essay about the internet and education, the thesis states your position and sketches out the key arguments you’ll use to support it.
The negatives of internet use are outweighed by its many benefits for education because it facilitates easier access to information.
In your essay about braille, the thesis statement summarizes the key historical development that you’ll explain.
The invention of braille in the 19th century transformed the lives of blind people, allowing them to participate more actively in public life.
A strong thesis statement should tell the reader:
- Why you hold this position
- What they’ll learn from your essay
- The key points of your argument or narrative
The final thesis statement doesn’t just state your position, but summarizes your overall argument or the entire topic you’re going to explain. To strengthen a weak thesis statement, it can help to consider the broader context of your topic.
These examples are more specific and show that you’ll explore your topic in depth.
Your thesis statement should match the goals of your essay, which vary depending on the type of essay you’re writing:
- In an argumentative essay , your thesis statement should take a strong position. Your aim in the essay is to convince your reader of this thesis based on evidence and logical reasoning.
- In an expository essay , you’ll aim to explain the facts of a topic or process. Your thesis statement doesn’t have to include a strong opinion in this case, but it should clearly state the central point you want to make, and mention the key elements you’ll explain.
A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.
The thesis statement is essential in any academic essay or research paper for two main reasons:
- It gives your writing direction and focus.
- It gives the reader a concise summary of your main point.
Without a clear thesis statement, an essay can end up rambling and unfocused, leaving your reader unsure of exactly what you want to say.
Follow these four steps to come up with a thesis statement :
- Ask a question about your topic .
- Write your initial answer.
- Develop your answer by including reasons.
- Refine your answer, adding more detail and nuance.
The thesis statement should be placed at the end of your essay introduction .
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Favourite , Writing Question 2
Muet writing task 2 – parts of an essay.
- June 8, 2021
An essay gives you the chance to flex your creative muscle. This is because it makes you think critically about a topic . Also, it allows you to write about what you think in an interesting way.
If you are in an exam situation then you would need to write everything within the length of time given. So, to be able to do all these, you would need to first of all know the parts of the essay that you would be writing. Let’s do that.
Essay Writing Format
- WRITING FORMAT
- 3 Content points
This is the writing format for essay writing in Task 2 . Your essay needs to be written according to this format as it will give your essay a very good structure.
You would need to have the three key parts to your essay. The first part of your essay is your introduction. The second part would be your three content points and the last part of your essay is the conclusion.
Let’s now find out how the introductory paragraph should be structured for your essay in Task 2.
Writing the Introduction Paragraph
- INTRODUCTION PARAGRAPH
- Provide a hook
- Background information of topic
- Thesis statement
- Make your stand - agree, disagree or partially agree
What you see here are the four items that you need to have in your introduction. Your introduction is one of the most important paragraphs in your essay if not the most important one. It is so because, your introduction sets the pace of your writing and signals to the reader of what they can expect to read in the rest of your essay.
This therefore means that you would need to write a strong introduction. This is how you can do that.
How to write a Strong Introduction for your Essay
Start with a hook.
First, you should start with a hook. A hook is something that you write that is going to be catchy. It is going to be attention grabbing. You need to get the reader who – in this case is the examiner to want to read more by starting with lines that are interesting. You can do several things like to start with a surprising fact or a quote from a famous person.
Provide background information of the topic
After pulling in the reader, then you would need to tell the reader the topic you are writing about. As this is the introduction of your essay and rightfully so, you would need to introduce the topic of your essay.
You can do this by giving some background information about the subject being discussed. Add in the current situation regarding the topic based on your observation.
After that provide some explanation of the topic and linking it to the statement made in the question. By doing this you are going to give more insight about the topic that you’re talking about.
Write your thesis statement
Following the explanation that you have given about the topic, you would then need to write the thesis statement of your essay.
A thesis statement is a sentence that is going to show the reader how you are going to interpret the subject. The thesis statement you have in your introduction is like a torchlight in a dark cinema . It is going to light the way for the reader of what you will be presenting in your essay.
How the thesis statement would benefit you as the writer is that it will give provide you with what to write in your essay. Yes, that is how important your thesis statement is.
Make your stand
And the very last sentence for your introductory paragraph is for you to make your stand. You make your stand by saying whether you agree, disagree or partially agree to the topic being discussed.
You will have to state your stand in the last sentence of your introduction when writing an argumentative essay. Making a clear stand in this type of essay will make you seem like you are sure of what you are going to say and makes you sound more confident.
For a discursive essay on the other hand, I would say making your stand would be optional. This is because you are going to be giving a balanced view of the topic being discussed. So, it would still be fine if you would like to state your stand in a discursive essay that asks you of your opinion on a subject.
In a problem – solution essay however you would not need to state your stand. This is because the main task that you would need to fulfil for this type of essay is for you to address the problem and provide solutions for it.
Let’s now look at how you need to write your content points for this extended writing essay.
- CONTENT POINTS
- Provide 3 relevant content points
- Show maturity of thought
- Be convincing
Task 2 requires you to write at least 250 words. You would need to provide 2 to 3 content points for this. Having two content points is enough if you can elaborate more on each content point.
But if you think that it will be better if you write 3 content points then it will be better for you. What you need to do is for you to provide a piece of writing that will show some level of maturity of thought regarding the topic. One way of doing this is for you to show some critical thinking. You can do this by analysing the topic and by addressing the topic from different point of views.
Next is for you to have elaborations to support these content points. The elaboration is going to help make your points become clearer.
You will also need to be convincing when writing. Being convincing is when you are able to make the reader believe in what you write. Ultimately you would need to get the reader to see your point of view and to agree to your opinion regarding the subject matter.
Paragraph Writing in your Essay
- PARAGRAPH WRITING
- Topic sentence
- Background info of the topic sentence
- Provide an example
- Closing of the paragraph
Let’s now look at paragraph writing. These are guidelines for you to write a good paragraph. As a teacher I normally ask my students to memorise these items that you would need to have in your paragraph to make it nice and clear.
Start with the topic sentence
First of all, is for you to write your topic sentence which is your content point. Your topic sentence should be in the very first sentence of your paragraph and nowhere else.
Support your topic sentence
After writing your topic sentence you would need to explain what you mean. You would need to make your topic sentence clearer by talking and explaining more about it.
Give a related example
Next is for you to give an example related to this topic sentence. By giving an example you will clarify your ideas even more. However, do not forget to tie up this example with the topic sentence. Providing an example is going to be a very nice addition to your paragraph.
When you write your topic sentence, provide an explanation, give it an example from the current issue happening around you and then tying it all up back to the topic sentence, you are showing critical thinking in your writing. As a result your writing will sound very convincing.
Signal the end of your paragraph
And last but not least is for you to close your paragraph. This is the last line where you are going to write in a way that it signals the ending of that idea you’ve been talking about.
This ending will sound like you’re moving on to another paragraph. So here as a closing of your paragraph you can reinstate the topic sentence. [reinstate: say and focus again]
You can do this by rephrasing your topic sentence and writing it in another way. Start this ending sentence for the paragraph with a sentence connector like ‘Hence..’, ‘Therefore..’ and ‘Thus..’. Then, add in the rephrase of your topic sentence.
Conclusion for your Essay
- Fresh rephrasing of the topic
- Provide your overview of the topic
- Summarise your 3 content points
- Closing for your essay
Your conclusion, I would say is one of the most important paragraphs in your essay if not the most important one.
This is where the examiner would likely make the final decision of what band your writing is going to fall in.
Unfortunately, I sometimes see students turning in their essays without a conclusion during tests. This normally happened because the students ran out of time and also simply because they were not really sure of how to write the concluding paragraphs.
To avoid not having a conclusion to your essay, you would need to manage your writing time well. Be sure to allocate enough time to write a conclusion to your essay.
Let’s see how it is done.
Provide a rephrase of the topic
The very first line of the concluding paragraph is where you write a fresh rephrasing of the topic. Write the topic again but this time using some different words.
Start your conclusion with phrases like ‘In conclusion’ or ‘To conclude’ or other linkers that your prefer and then state the topic. This is to remind the person reading about the topic being discussed.
Write your general feelings of the topic again
Next is for you to provide your general overview of the topic again. You need to reestablish where you stand and what your personal view is of the subject matter. To reestablish is when you put focus on the importance of something again. You can write two to three sentences for this.
Put in a summary of your content points
Next is for you to summarise your three content points. Now summarising do not simply mean for you to repeat what you have said in your content paragraphs. Doing this will only make your writing sound repetitive.
So, what you need to do is for you to state all your content points that you have written in your content paragraphs but to write them using other words that carry the same meanings.
Signal the Closing of your Essay
And last but not least is the closing of your essay. This is 1 sentence or maybe two sentences where you are going to put in your final note on the topic. You can give a hope for the future or you can state a warning of what is going to happen if things are not done the right way.
Read more about writing an essay in my other blogs. Happy reading!
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Roslina Abdul Latiff
Hello everyone. I am a MUET teacher teaching the sixth formers in a school in the historic city of Melaka, Malaysia. I have been teaching for more than 25 years and I am also a book writer. I hope I can be of some help to you in achieving the band that you need.
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Thursday, february 28, 2013, my latest tips of writing muet level thesis statements, 14 comments:.
Hye mdm Audrey. I'm glad to have come across your blog as i'm very new at teaching MUET and i have yet to know the best way and the best tips to help my students. If you don't mind, i would like to use your materials to teach to my students since yours are very easy to understand esp for intermediate students.
pleasure to help.. that is why i set up this blog.. to help both educators n learners. after using my notes pls give me some feedback. tq.
Thank you so much. :)
Hye mdm Audrey, if you don't mind, i would like to use your materials to share in a portal that sharing any information.Hope you don;t mind about it.
do you have the answer script for march 2013 writing paper
Hey mdm Audrey would like to have your permission to use your materials for my muet class. Tks
sis please give some muet question for november repeat . help me,please, last year i've got band 2 after i find ms audrey' blog! ,that is the once highest score in my school.i want to repeat for november dis year. help me! give me muet question for november 2013.
I think it would be good to challenge yourself in writing whether it would be just an essay or a long thesis paper. Your tip would curtailing help thesis or any kind of paper to help student be a proper writer, and not just write because they are obliged to do it.
Hey mdm Audrey can i know for the next seminar?which place and date?
In addition, I think it would much easier to arrange their academic essay if they know a lot on their topic and thesis statement. That way, it would be easier for them to right it, and not get bored as they like their thesis statement . Anyway, the link would certainly help a lot of people who are having a lot of trouble with their paper.
tomorrow is my muet speaking test. I hope at least I can score in band 4. i'm so worried about my listening because I can't get the gist and they were talked very fast.
Thank you so much for your help!
Thank you for the notes
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MUET Writing Malaysia – Definitive Guide with Essay Example
MUET is a test that all Malaysian students must take in order to apply for their desired course. It consists of 3 parts: Language Proficiency, General Paper, and Subject Knowledge Test. The Language Proficiency section tests the student’s command of the English language through various writing tasks such as essay writing, letter-writing, and summarizing text. This blog post will aim to provide you with tips on how to score well in this section of MUET by providing an example of an essay topic along with guidelines on how it should be written.
What is MUET writing in Malaysia?
MUET is also known as the Malaysian University English Test seeks to measure the English proficiency among candidates who plan on pursuing tertiary studies at universities located within Malaysia.
The MUET is a test that tests the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. While some people may be better at one or two than others; they’re all important to hone in order for anyone interested in pursuing an education around these topics.
The MUET writing test is challenging- students have to transfer information from a non-linear source and write an essay of at least 350 words on the topic given.
MUET Essay Task 1: Report writing (40 marks)
- You have been given 40 minutes to complete the task.
- Study and analyze the information.
- Describe the information or the process in a report format
- Write between 150-200 words
MUET Essay Task 2: Extended writing (60 marks)
- The essay must not be less than 350 words
- Given 50 minutes to complete the task
- Your essay can be:
– Analytical- – Descriptive – Persuasive – Argumentative
Topics for MUET Essay Writing
The following topics are perfectly acceptable for a MUET essay, as all are general knowledge questions that every university or college student should know.
- Why do people commit suicide for selfish reasons? Discuss
- The most valuable thing in life is friendship do you agree?
- Some people prefer street food others prefer homemade which one is the best to support your answer in 350 words
- Education must be free for every child do you agree or not?
- Impact of social media on people
- Some people prefer small towns to live in others one prefer to live in a city why? Which one do you prefer?
MUET Essay Writing Format
MUET is a challenging exam because it includes writing within the Academic Writing Format. For many students, this format may be unfamiliar and difficult to understand or execute in their answers at test time so they don’t score well on that section of MUET.
This difficulty can come from being unaware of how academic writing differs from other forms such as creative or personal essays which are more common formats for essay questions outside of the MUET testing space.
1. Introduction paragraph:
Introduce your topic to the reader.
- Use catchy lines, questions, brief definitions, etc.
- Must have a thesis statement a statement which consists of the main big ideas
- Never use: “research or study” use words like on the basics of my readings, in my opinion, as this is essay writing, not a research paper.
- Never use: “ can be defined as” use words like “In my opinion, I believe that, etc.”
2. Body paragraph:
Body paragraph: must have 3 paragraphs.
- State the main idea
- Often written as the first sentence of each paragraph
- Supporting details and ideas
- Examples, elaborations, explanations,s, and descriptions can also be included
- Must support the main idea discussed in this particular body/body paragraph
- Use linkers, connectors, and transition words.
- Restate the main idea
- Use words like hence, therefore, thus, as a result.
- Write it like it is the last sentence of the paragraph.
3. Concluding paragraph:
- Bring the ending of things that you have discussed earlier.
- Restate your thesis statements.
- The conclusion must have 4 sentences
- You may suggest, give opinions or reaffirm your stand
- Use words: To conclude, to summarize, as a conclusion, finally, lastly, eventually, to encapsulate.
Tips to write MUET Essay for Malaysian Students
The best way to write a MUET essay is to have a succinct thesis in the introduction and also be cognizant of transitions between one topic and another.
Moreover, it’s important to know your audience when you’re writing an essay for MUET. One key point which is usually overlooked by students is having knowledge about the specific subject they’re talking about.
- Transfer information
- Use good grammar
- Carefully analyze the graphical information
- Give your opinion
- Think critically
- If you’re aiming at scoring Band 5 or higher, then critical thinking is a must.
- If your aim is to score Band 5 or higher on the exam, it’s time for some serious rigor and reflection.
Use these tools to help with critical thinking: Short term, mid-term and long term effects
- Example: Alcohol
- Short term: yellow teeth/bad breath
- Mid-term: waste of money
- Long term: Health problems such as cancer
- Individual, society, and government
- Individual: Set goals and prepare for change
- Society: Must not encourage one to consume alcohol.
- Government: Must stop fundraising
Types of MUET Essays
MUET essays are usually of the expository type, they can also be argumentative or persuasive.
- While an essay with a descriptive header generally has a focus on what is being described.
- An essay with a narrative header (or “story”) generally puts a priority on how something was done or what it felt like to do it and the completion
- And an informative-explanatory (inform + explain) header offers treatment or analysis of existing data, facts, practices, etc.
- Persuasive essay questions require you to take up a position on an issue and then persuade or convince the reader about your viewpoint based upon evidence. These can come in the form of anecdotes, facts, statistics etcetera
- Expository Essays are different from other types of essays in that they don’t require any persuasion but instead simply look for evidence supporting or disproving what you have been told/asked about.
Importance of MUET essay
You will be required to take the MUET test if you are planning on pursuing your university degree at local public university.
However, note that this requirement is not compulsory for those who wish to pursue their education outside of these institutions and choose instead to study at private schools or international ones (MUET tests are only necessary when applying for scholarships).
Remember also, that different universities may have different English proficiency requirements so make sure you check what they need before sending off an application.
The grading system for MUET
When students get their MUET result, they’ll be able to see the mark for each paper and then an overall score. Band 1 is when the student will have to take two extra English courses during holiday time; a Band 3 or 4 means one course more than this. If you’re in bands 5 or 6- excellent! You don’t need any additional lessons over the summer holidays whatsoever.
MUET Essay writing Band 6- Very good user (Aggregated score: 260-300)
The speaker demonstrates a strong command of the language, and their fluency is unparalleled. They are highly expressive in everything they say, accurate with words that express both nuance and precision when needed most. The person’s understanding of context should not be questioned – it appears as if this individual functions flawlessly when interacting verbally or written textually via various languages.
MUET Essay writing Band 5- Good user (Aggregated score: 220-259)
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How to Write a Thesis Statement | 4 Steps & Examples Step 1: Start with a question. You should come up with an initial thesis, sometimes called a working thesis, early in... Step 2: Write your initial answer. After some initial research, you can formulate a tentative answer to this question. Step 3: ...
A thesis statement is a sentence that is going to show the reader how you are going to interpret the subject. The thesis statement you have in your introduction is like a torchlight in a dark cinema. It is going to light the way for the reader of what you will be presenting in your essay.
A lot of students do not score well in MUET writing because they may be unaware of the Academic Writing Format. Those who know about it find it hard to verbalise it or get it down on paper, as such, their intros might not follow the appropriate formal writing style that is preferred for MUET level.
MUET my way...: My latest tips of writing MUET level Thesis Statements MUET my way... Followers Thursday, February 28, 2013 My latest tips of writing MUET level Thesis Statements Many students and teachers ask me how they should arrange their academic essays.
MUET Essay Task 1: Report writing (40 marks) You have been given 40 minutes to complete the task. Study and analyze the information. Describe the information or the process in a report format Write between 150-200 words MUET Essay Task 2: Extended writing (60 marks) The essay must not be less than 350 words Given 50 minutes to complete the task