What is a thesis?

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A thesis is a statement or theory that is put forward as a premise to be maintained or proved. It is a sentence stating the main point or idea of an essay, and is the basis on which the entire essay is built. It is usually stated at the beginning or end of the first paragraph in the introduction. When stated at the end, the sentences leading to the thesis should aim to hook the reader to want to read further. A startling statistic, an unusual fact, or a vivid example should be able to do the trick. Other things that command attention and interest are: a paradoxical statement; a relevant quotation; a gripping question; an interesting analogy; and a pressing anecdote. In cases where a straightforward approach is necessary, such as in work related writing, stating the thesis at the beginning will be more effective.

A thesis must be supported with well organized evidence. This evidence is usually attained from sources not your own and must be accurately cited.


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