Thesis

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					The Thesis Paper



Strategies for success
Components of the paper
 Introduction



 Body paragraphs



 Conclusion
Introduction

 Short – does not contain supporting detail,
  which is meant for body paragraphs.

 Three required elements
     General Statement
     Thesis Statement
     Structure Statement
General Statement
 Topic of the paper        Examples:

     What is your topic?
                            Nature intended for human
                              beings to protect and care
                              for their young.
 Introduces the
 general idea of            Pride has the potential for either
 the paper to the              fulfillment or destruction; it is
                               our choices that determine
 reader.                       whether the outcome is
                               positive or negative.
Thesis Statement
 Follows the general
  statement                 Example:
                            Kino’s actions in The Pearl
 Narrows the general         reveal that although
  statement to a specific     success may fuel good
  point the writer wants      intentions, individuals will
  to make about the           ultimately become
  topic                       consumed by greed
                              because success is
 Is complex and              inevitably egocentric .
  arguable rather than
  descriptive*.
Thesis vs. Descriptive Statement
 A descriptive statement states what is
  obvious in the text; the writer simply presents
  the information that anyone can find in the
  text.
     ex.) Although Kino has good intentions for the pearl, he
      ultimately follows a path that is driven by greed.

 A thesis statement, on the other hand, needs
  the writer to interpret information from the
  text. Another reader would not easily see how
  the text will support the opinion.
Good words to create a strong Thesis:
  Because
  Since
  So / So that
  Although
  Unless
  However
A Strong Thesis…

Takes a stand, expresses an opinion

Descriptive: There are some negative and positive aspects to the
  Banana Herb Tea Supplement.

Thesis: Because Banana Herb Tea Supplement promotes rapid weight
  loss that results in the loss of muscle and lean body mass, it poses a
  potential danger to customers.
A Strong Thesis…

Leads to discussion, not description.

Descriptive: Acton-Boxborough is a competitive high school.

Thesis: While some psychologists suggest that competition can be
  harmful to teens, many high schools promote competition both
  in and out of the classroom as a means of self-motivation.
A Strong Thesis…

Expresses one focused main idea.

Weak: Gene was not a true friend to Finny (idea #1) and he was
  insecure about his own abilities (idea #2).

Focused: Because Gene was insecure about his own strengths, he was
  not a supportive and true friend to Finny.
A Strong Thesis…

Is specific.

General: World hunger has many causes and effects.

Specific: Hunger persists in Appalachia because jobs are scarce and
  farming in the infertile soil is rarely profitable.
 Structure Statement
 Usually the last sentence of      Examples:
  the introduction                  Shackleton abandons his goals,
                                      jeopardizes his personal
                                      welfare, and compromises his
 A “road map” for the paper –
                                      schedule to bring his crew to
  stating exactly how the textual
                                      safety.
  evidence will be used to
  defend the thesis
                                    The Finches and Calpurnia are
                                      respected for their character
 Clearly shows sequence and
                                      and knowledge, while the
  organization of body
                                      Ewells are subjects of hatred
  paragraphs
                                      because of their questionable
                                      ethics and disdain for
                                      education.
The Body Paragraph
 Develops a point that supports the thesis.
 Begins with a topic sentence that reflects the
  thesis.
 Uses the text, including quotations, to support
  and develop the thesis. Banish plot summary.
 Integrates quotations and analysis using solid
  transitions.
 Uses transitional sentences that show
  relationships between paragraphs.
Topic Sentence
 Reflects the thesis idea   Example:
                             Since Shackleton knows that
                               his men will only be
 Is a specific “snapshot”
                               rescued if someone
  of the paragraph             agrees to sail across the
                               Arctic in a small open
                               boat, he willingly risks his
                               life to make that journey.
 Emphasizes the
  structure of the paper     (Structure statement: Shackleton
  by echoing the structure       abandons his goals, jeopardizes
                                 his personal welfare, and
  statement                      compromises his schedule to
                                 bring his crew to safety.)
Supporting Evidence
 Examples, including quotations,
  should not tell the plot, but rather use
  events to support the thesis of the
  paper.
Thesis: In A Separate Peace by John Knowles,
  Brinker’s attitude reveals his inner evil, as he
  intentionally causes harm and refuses to
  acknowledge the damaging effects of his actions.

Quote: “Wait a minute!... We haven’t heard everything
  yet. We haven’t got all the facts!” (177).
Integration of Quotations
 Introduce quotations by giving context.


Example:
Despite the fact that Finny is visibly upset by the
  trial, Brinker forges ahead, saying, “Wait a
  minute!... We haven’t heard everything yet.
  We haven’t got all the facts!” (177).
Analysis of Quotations
 You should not summarize the quotation.
 Instead…
     Explain how each part of the passage
      supports the point you are developing.
 Long quotes require more sentences of
  analysis than shorter quotes.
 Never begin your analysis by saying, “This
  quote says…” or anything similar.
 Never end a paragraph with a quotation –
  always analyze!
How would you analyze this?
Thesis: In A Separate Peace by John Knowles,
  Brinker’s attitude reveals his inner evil, as he
  intentionally causes harm and refuses to
  acknowledge the damaging effects of his actions.

Lead-in: Brinker’s ignorance is present throughout the
  book, but particularly during the trial that he has
  orchestrated. Despite the fact that Finny is visibly
  upset by the ordeal, Brinker forges ahead, saying,

Quote: “Wait a minute!... We haven’t heard everything
  yet. We haven’t got all the facts!” (177).
Your Conclusion

 Review the main points of your essay.
 Respect your reader – you have taught him or
  her about the subject, so don’t just take us back
  to the intro!
 Renew your ideas - don’t just restate your
  introduction – this is too repetitive.
 Reveal a strong statement that will make the
  reader think!!
Requirements
 A creative title


 Proper citation and use of quotes


 750-1000 words
Your title…
 Should be unique and interesting


 Should demonstrate an important part of your
  thesis or argument.
Example…


        Motivation over Consequences:
      The Evil Role of Greed in The Pearl
Proper use of quotations!
 Choose short quotations – not more than 30
  words.

 Put the page number in parentheses
  immediately after the close quotation mark,
  but before the punctuation.

Example:
“The town where she lived had to be kept clean and
  sweet, but people everywhere were lustful and evil
  and degraded” (147-8).
Other important things…
 Italicize or underline novels
 Avoid expressions like “Now I will tell you
  about…”; “So you can see that…”; “This
  shows that…”
 Be firm – avoid words like can, would, should,
  could have, perhaps.
 Write in the present tense – consistently.
 Deal with the text as written. If you want a
  different story, write it yourself.
 Eliminate contractions
Always a No-No!
 “I think that this quote shows…”


 “You can see loneliness affect each
  character.”

 “Clearly, in conclusion, to sum up my ideas...”

				
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