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How to Write a Thesis Statement for Research Paper

Published on: Feb 07, 2018
Updated on: Jul 19, 2023
Table of content
  • What is thesis statement
  • Purpose of a thesis statement
  • Step-by-step writing guide
  • Elements of a good thesis statement
  • Format tips
  • Self-check points
  • Best advice
  • Thesis statement examples

How to Write a Thesis Statement for Research Paper

All existing types of essays have an outline to ensure that the reader can understand everything.

You have to know how to define and formulate a thesis in an essay since various kinds of essays have different writing structures. To format a thesis statement, you must know the parts of a thesis statement for your research paper. In a research essay, it is essential to have a guiding sentence because it guides the reader on what the research will cover.

Getting to know what is a thesis statement

Before you get to actually writing down the text of your essay, you have to know what a thesis statement is. It means a short sentence about what will be covered in the body. You can develop it by applying your judgment on a certain topic. A thesis statement for a research paper must state the major points the body will be about. You should be able to use the thesis statement to attract the reader to your work. Most students do not understand the importance of this thesis statement, so they end up writing a sentence that constitutes a lot of descriptions or definitions, which is incorrect.

  • The thesis should summarize what you are to cover in the body paragraphs of your essay; you should not be wordy in your contention.
  • The thesis statement should be arguable to attract the reader to the body by giving a reason to look into your work and concentrate.
  • With the help of the thesis, you show the reader what your work will be about, what questions will be revealed, and why you decided to research it.

Thus, a short college thesis statement gives an idea of the whole work without rereading it. All the subsequent paper text should correspond to the topic you have revealed in the thesis.

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What is the purpose of a thesis statement?

In addition to being an obligatory part of most student papers, this short part consists of 1-2 sentences and performs some functions.

  1. First, the thesis clearly shows what you have researched, why, and your main idea. Readers understand what to expect and may agree or disagree with your point of view. Later in the work, they will see your arguments and research.
  2. Second, a thesis statement helps you identify and stick to a central theme. Once you have formulated your idea, you will not be tempted to ask a few more questions in parallel because you will be focused on one research subject. Thus, the work comes out more profound, scientific, and research.

Therefore, before writing your paper, create a thesis for your work, which will help you move further along the writing path.

How to write a good thesis for a research paper?

A well-prepared outline is a kind of roadmap on how you should organize your work with a thesis. A hypothesis usually conceptualizes the points to be written in the body. It is good to have an order for your premise; it makes your thesis look nice and boosts the clarity of your work. Thus, to write a thesis statement, follow these steps.

1. Choose a thesis topic and a specific question you want to explore.

The thesis statement, like the study as a whole, should address some narrow issues. For example, “Global warming” is a weak thesis statement, and unclear what you will write about. On the contrary, “How the operation of plant X affects lake Y’s biodiversity and state Z’s climate” is more specific and understandable. You are investigating this issue because you want to understand how the operation of the plant explicitly affects life in the local region. We gathered a huge list of research paper topics.

2. Research the topic and formulate a preliminary thesis statement.

Finally, you have a question to investigate to make a thesis statement. Conduct short research and formulate a preliminary thesis statement. At first, it may not be accurate and general. Something like, “Factory X causes algae A to disappear, reducing the biodiversity of Lake Y and changing the climate of State Z.” Your further research will deepen your thesis statement and confirm your thoughts, or vice versa, make you change your mind.

3. Do your research and provide the facts in the thesis?

The most voluminous part of your work starts here. You need to research and find arguments to support your point of view. After that, you need to bring them in your paper. When everything is ready, you must supplement your thesis with facts and explain your point of view on the issue under study.

4. Reread the finished thesis statement and remove the excess.

Now your thesis is ready, and you can correct it. Reread it and remove all unnecessary. Remember, the thesis of the research paper should be precise, short, and only 2-3 sentences long. Get rid of possible errors, inaccuracies, and typos.

Mandatory elements of a good thesis statement

A thesis statement should include several points if you want it to be strong.

  • Conflict or research question. It is the central theme you will cover in the research paper.
  • Arguments supporting your point of view. It is how your thesis turns from an idea into something scientific and concrete.
  • Originality. If a million other studies support your thesis, the study does not bring anything new. Thus, the reader will question why you even wrote this research paper.
  • Concreteness. Your thesis statement should clarify what point of view you are holding.
  • A place for controversy. If your thesis is controversial and leaves room for discussion with whoever reads your research paper, you’ve done an excellent job.

Research paper thesis statement format (tips)

Different research papers have different meanings and formats to follow. It is good to identify the type of essay you are working on before you actually start to write a thesis statement for a research paper. There are different types of essays you should be aware of. Some of the common essay types include:

  • An expository essay mainly involves a lot of explanations. It is more of an informative essay, where the writer’s objective is to educate their readers about a certain topic. Most of the writing in this essay and thesis is usually factual and constitutes evidence.
  • An argumentative essay is mainly based on confusing matters where the writer must clarify the point to the reader. Writing a thesis statement for a research paper of this type, you must bring out a claim and support it satisfactorily.
  • An analytic essay means breaking down a point into smaller units and conducting an evaluation.
  • A custom research essay is writing that requires one to gather facts about a certain topic and construct an essay and thesis on those points.

Knowing all types of thesis statements and essays at your fingertips, you can easily encrypt your thesis statement to fit your targeted essay. For a research outline, it is the premise that guides the reader on your explanations; the main objective is usually to get information about a certain topic.

Self-check points to write a research paper and succeed

It is simple to know whether someone has attained the necessities of a certain research topic – the examiner will go through your proposition in the thesis and know whether you are out of topic or on the right track. The same applies to your lecturer, when they give out a topic for research, they have certain points they expect to see. There is no common thesis statement structure. To come up with a strong thesis outline for your essay, you should note the following:

  • You should have proof in your supposition and include evidence so the reader can be convinced of what you will talk about.
  • Mention your points of support – you should state the importance of your essay in the proposition so that the reader can be motivated to continue reading. After mentioning that, your task will be to support it with illustration and evidence.
  • A proper proposition should clearly address the points discussed in the body. Reading your hypothesis lets the reader know what you will describe in the incoming paragraphs. All the body paragraphs should work to support your main idea (premise).
  • You should be able to answer a question: where does the research thesis statement go? A good introduction should constitute a premise thesis statement to be complete. It is good to place the thesis statement at the end of your introduction so the reader can link it well with the body.

As a rule, the introduction normally provides a small background about the topic. After, the hypothesis clarifies what to expect in the body to be a good transition to the body. If you place the thesis statement somewhere at the beginning of your introduction, the reader would have forgotten it as they get to the body. That is why it should come immediately after the introduction.

Best advice if you need to write a thesis sentence

If you are ready to start a thesis statement, you have to pay attention to key points such as:

  • A proposition should be concise and to the point – you should avoid a lot of explanation in the sentence since the proposition should be one sentence long. If you write many words, you end up confusing the reader.
  • Use good grammar – what facilitates understanding of your thesis statements is good grammar. You have to be keen on grammar and spelling errors if you want your work to be readable. Thus, when you are ready to write a thesis paragraph, do it and then reread your sentences. To be certain of your work, take time to go through your sentences after writing them so that you can correct errors.
  • Be certain to attract the reader’s attention – the reader should find it interesting to read your work. To attract the reader’s attention, you can apply different techniques: create suspense by not giving out everything in the introduction or briefly touch on the most interesting point so that the reader would want to know more about it by proceeding.

The proposition should state your stand on what you are talking about. For a research paper, you must clarify to the reader why you support a certain idea. You should be persuasive in your description to win the reader to your side.

Research paper thesis examples and templates

Going through samples of contextual thesis statements is good as it enables you to advance your writing skills. In today’s world, the Internet provides access to various resources to get research writings with well-written propositions. When you read the work of other writers, you can note some errors and make rectifications when it comes to your own.

It is good to get exposed to different research topics to learn how to design your proposition to suit different papers. You can also access these examples in news items such as journals, newspapers, articles, and educational magazines. You should also participate in essay writing competitions for research papers to advance your skills in formatting your premise because every research paper has a thesis statement.

Here are some thesis statement examples for research papers:

Since pets have a good effect on a person’s mental state, their upbringing can become one of the key ways to deal with stress and medication.

Since producing electric cars leads to the growth of many harmful substances in the air and the exploitation of the population in underdeveloped countries, their environmental benefits are doubtful.

Drinking 4 cups of coffee daily normalizes cardiac activity, making the drink an adjuvant in treating cardiac disorders.

These theses are specific and short for the reader to understand what will be discussed in the paper. Besides, the ideas are pretty controversial, which fuels interest and makes you read the entire work. Don’t be afraid to use controversial arguments to create a strong thesis and hook the audience immediately!

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