Do not focus on how to write a thesis for a research paper

Formulating your thesis statement is nearly the first thing you need to do when deciding on your research topic. When hearing the word “thesis” itself, students often seem to dread and shiver. This happens mostly because they have little understanding of what they are expected to present as their opening argument. Below we gathered the general rules and tips on how to write a thesis for a research paper and what you are expected to include in it.

The thesis statement should simultaneously be simple and complicated. This concept tends to confuse students the most. Trying to grasp onto it, you might find yourself searching for definite rules of formulating the thesis. The tricky part is that there is no ultimate guide on how to draw up one.

Basically, a thesis is a short annotation that presents your research topic and gives a sneak peak into the methodology you used for your study along with the arguments you stand by. The aim of a thesis is to give a reader an outlook of what he or she is about to learn. Nevertheless, it is not nearly the same as the topic of the research or its short summary. One’s thesis statement should put a major emphasis on how they introduce their idea, suggestion, or point of view. This gives a researcher enough space to decide on how he or she wants to formulate their opening statement. While there are no concrete rules, there are, indeed, basic expectations that academic advisors hold before reading your research paper.

Identify the main point of your research

Think of what message you are trying to convey through your paper. While we generally consider a research paper to be an unbiased piece, it barely every excludes the opinionated bit. Depending on what subject you are conducting your research on, its thesis statement might be very tendentious towards a certain point or not that tendentious. In any event, it is rarely entirely objective.

Once you have your key point in mind, answer the following questions:

  • Is my thesis narrow enough to present its core in two-three sentences?
  • Does it indicate a concrete point, with no abstractions and/or hypotheses?
  • Can it be eloquently put into a statement (not a question or factual declaration)?

If you checked at least one “no”, consider changing your mind on your research topic. Chances are, it is too general, too abstract, or oversimplified. Proceed with How to write a thesis for a research paper tips.

Think about the opposing arguments

While you want to avoid making your thesis statement opinionated, it is supposed to include challengeable assertions. Meaning that, unless your research is on the STEM topic with no interpretive conflicts, there should be counterarguments to the points that you present. To brainstorm the possible debates that may arise from the view disclosed in your research paper is a good way to double check that your thesis statement stands. It follows up with some other instructions:

  • Pro or con statement does not make a good thesis. Stay away from judgmental, black or white remarks.
  • Your thesis should give a clear overview on the topic of your research.
  • It should specify which way you are going with your opinion.
  • It should also explain your reasoning for choosing to stand by this point.

Choose your words wisely

Your thesis statement should be the strongest assertion of the introductory part of your research paper. It should be direct and thick, which is why your word choice might make it exceptional or ruin it completely. There are some general rules on wording:

  • Do not use notional and abstruse concepts (society, humanity, morality, etc.)
  • Do not quote other sources in your thesis.
  • Avoid using weak action verbs and possessive case.

Your opening statement indicates the level of your academic and professional expertise on your research topic. If you still feel perplexed about the whole thesis thing, do not hesitate to ask for our assistance. We know the ropes when it comes to how to write a thesis for a research paper.