How to Write a Thesis Essay

How to Write a GREAT Thesis Essay
The following outlines the proper format for a 5 paragraph Thesis essay. Work
hard at developing a thesis, think critically about your arguments, find specific
examples, and you will do well.
Paragraph One (Introductory Paragraph)
Sentence One: General statement (sometimes called a ‘theme statement’; hints at the
thesis; does not say characters’ names or specifics)
Sentence Two: Author, title (i.e., Twelfth Night), continue general statement
Sentences Three, Four, Five: Harnessing statements (2-4 sentences which allude to the
arguments, moving toward the thesis)
Sentence Six (maybe Seven) Thesis statement (1-2 sentences, including three specific
arguments in the correct order)
Paragraph Two (Developing Paragraph #1: Eight Sentences)
Topic sentence (argument number one)
Example #1 (give a specific incident from the literary work that makes the argument
Explanation #1 (explain how the example relates to the argument)
Example #2
Explanation #2
Example #3 (note: at least one of these three examples should include a quotation from
the literary work as well)
Concluding Sentence (ties the paragraph together; refers back to argument #1)
Paragraph Three (Developing Paragraph #2)
Like above, only for argument number two. Be sure to use “linking” or “transitional”
phrases between paragraphs.
Paragraph Four (Developing Paragraph #3)
Like above, only for argument number three (the strongest argument).
Paragraph Five (Concluding Paragraph) –reverse of Introductory
Sentence One: Restate the thesis statement (be sure to reword it).
Sentences Two, Three, Four: Restate one great example from each developing
Sentence Five: Restate the general statement. Leave the reader with something to think
about. Perhaps this topic could somehow apply to the world in general or to some aspect
of humanity. Try not to ask rhetorical questions.
Put some thought into your order or arguments. Remember that the order in which you
mention your arguments in your thesis statement must also be the order in which you deal
with them in Developing Paragraphs. Here are some options for choosing the order of
your arguments:
Option #1: Chronological
Deal with the arguments according to the chronological order of your examples.
Option #2: Weakest to Strongest
Option #3: Second Strongest, Weakest, Strongest
This option is usually the prime choice for the grade 9 Thesis Essay.
You must include a Works Cited page which cites your primary source (in this
case, your Twelfth Night text). You must cite it properly, using the proper format.
Go to “Forms and Documents / Style Guide”.
Remember to use “linking words (also known as ‘transitional phrases’) between
paragraphs and examples.
Avoid the following words: “I”, “you” (use ‘one’ instead of ‘you’).
Avoid cliches (phrases that you have heard before or seen before in print).
Include a complete Essay outline.
Write in present tense (except when providing examples that happened before the
literary work begins).
Write and rewrite your thesis statement until you are satisfied that it will deal with
every aspect of your desired topic. Make sure you follow the following due date
guideline, including handing your thesis statement into your teacher.