Today we are going to discuss thesis statement. Many students, including myself when I first wrote my composition in college, become anxious when they heard this word thesis statement. What is it? You’ve heard it maybe in high school or you might remember, but you never really think it was you. You wrote it you think. You put it in the entrance but then you didn’t know.
Well, today what we wanna do is really simplify this idea of thesis statement. Because really the idea is very simple idea. And just like you know the essay, which we will talk about a little bit later. And the intro, which we already discussed, it’s very natural what the thesis statement is. We all think that we don’t really like we discuss that in our introductions. And this statement, if you remember from our introduction lecture, is that last sentence in that general specific introduction in the intro.
So, it is the most specific sentence in the introduction. So, we wanna really focus on the idea of specific today. Now, to be able to create a thesis statement, we have to be able to find what it is. We have to know what it is in order to actually be able to write the right one. You might be able to quote a dictionary definition of a thesis statement or a definition of another word from a dictionary or focus on somewhere else. However, if you can’t put something really into your own words, you really don’t understand what it means. Let alone would you be able to create one.
So, today we’re going to try to facilitate every one’s creation of their own definition of a thesis statement. You wanna make a thesis statement your own, so that you can create one in any situation, write situation that you might find yourself in. And as we discuss, as we continue discussing this series. Essays all have thesis statement of some kind. So it’s a very important concept.
So, lets begin with this idea of how to define thesis statement. Lets talk about some words just single words that describe what a thesis statement is. First, we use the word specific right. It’s the opposite of general. You know general could be very broad. Specific being very small like a one point. General being, the Milky Way galaxy. Specific being, you know ecpi returning to each campus room before twelve. I’m getting general to specific.
So, another word that many people used to describe thesis statement is the word map. A thesis statement can be a map for your readers so they can understand how to read your paper. It leads them as a map leads somebody on a journey through that paper. If it’s an argument, which you have your position on with your thesis, many times you let your reader know your position, so that they know where it’s coming from. This will help you, depending on how you set up an argument, prove that thesis statement within the paper. So, we got map. We got specific.
Focus. Focus is a great word. It’s the best word I’ve ever come across to really describe what a thesis statement is. When you think about focus, you might think of a camera lens. We have a lot of digital cameras now, so we might not have the lenses that we turn. But everybody l remembers like a 35 millimeters cameras with a big lens that you turn back and forth. And it makes with the aperture of the lens change in size, so that the image comes in focus or out of focus. So, let’s think about that when we think about thesis statement.
So, when we have it really fuzzy, we got our general sentences at the beginning of our intro. And the more we turn that lens, the more it focuses it on that image, so that it can be seen very sharply, very sharply, and if you think about the resolution on your computer screen to give it perfect. So, you keep turning that lens, like in your intro, you keep it more specific into it. You snap tight and the image is crystal clear. That is your thesis statement.
That crystal clear sense that tells your readers exactly what the paper is gonna be about. All this fuzzy color and everything but when you turn that lens perfectly it all makes sense. It’s kind of what your thesis statement will do. Now, another good thing about this image, or this kind of focus more talking about this thesis statement, is it tells you how far to go. Because as you know once you give keep that image tight, you can keep turning in too far to the other direction, so thesis statement could in it. In some instances they are too specific.
Now, the level of specificity in your thesis statement is usually design by the length of your paper or the advance state that you have to prove that thesis statement. So, if you have a two degree page paper as in your first assignment, which we will discuss on the next lecture on essays, then your thesis would be very specific. But if you got a fifty page paper, which you won’t write here, but if you got a fifty page paper to write, you can have the same thesis statement that you will have on a two page paper, because you gonna find yourself saying the same things over and over again and over again.
So the tighter the picture it gets, the smaller the spaces it takes to prove that picture. So we think about it. So, those are the words that we use to describe what a thesis statement is. Let’s talk about what a thesis statement does. We can use the same words. It leads the reader. It might explain to the reader what the paper would be about. Give them a tight very specific background what the paper of what we are talking about. We already talked about focus. It focuses the reader’s attention. It might, sometimes, ask a question. Sometimes, it might answer a question that your reader already has. Or it might tell your reader that the answer to a question that he has is gonna be found somewhere in that paper.
Everything in answer specifically in that thesis points that reader into that paper. So it is that one sentence that accomplishes everything that the essay would be about . Now in your first essay, which we will discuss the essay structure in the next lecture, the thesis statement has two parts. It has basically the event part and the result part. If you have an essay about an event that change your life, you have to tell somebody what the event is and what the change is, so that they can see it. So, the event is an accident that made you afraid to drive. So, here’s an accident and now I’m afraid to drive.
You put those together in a sentence. If not with this accident, I will not be afraid to drive. That’s very specific you might even get more specific and focus it more. If it was not of this specific accident, you might use these words. If it wasn’t for the car accident that I had on the road after my birthday party in 1999, I will not be petrified to get behind the wheel of my car today. Now that’s very specific. And in your two or three page paper, you could elaborate and explain and prove that the thesis within the essay itself. And again we will talk about that instruction on the next lecture.
But as you could see in that statement, focus is really relevant on everything that you might talk about in the introduction. It points them, it leads them to the general direction to what it’s gonna be accomplished, to what that paper would be about. So, now I will encourage you to try to use you know the terms that we’ve mentioned about what a thesis statement is and what it does. And come up with some of your own to write a definition of what a statement is. Thesis statement is a sentence that can answer questions, direct your reader, and focus them on top. I mean, but you wanna write your own definition.
Any thing vary, you might have a generic definition that you use all the time. And then it might change a little bit from paper to paper depending on the writing situation that you find yourself in. We will discuss thesis statement each time we got a different type of essay because that specific type of thesis varies. Today we just talk about what a thesis statement is and we try to define it. It’s a very specific statement in a sentence that tells your reader exactly what your paper gonna be about and gives them a direction in which you wish to lead them. Thank you and remember on our next lecture will be discussing the essay structure.