How to write a thesis paper
If you have to write a thesis paper but have no idea how to go about it, read the following post to guide you through the process.
What is a thesis?
A thesis is an argument that you make while writing a paper. All parts of the essay or paper must be in line in with the thesis, which is considered to be the spine of any research paper. Essentially, a thesis consists of two concepts; what your ideas are about and what your ideas are.
It is advised to only create a thesis if you have devoted some time to think about the topic in detail. Before writing the thesis, you should spend time on obtaining evidence with regards to your claim, looking for intrarelationships in your detailed topic and then analyzing the importance of these intrarelationships. It should then be easy for you to start a rough draft of the argument that can be supported by the evidence you collect. However, keep in mind that your thesis and the corresponding argument will require multiple edits until it is ready to be presented.
There are two types of thesis:
- Descriptive thesis: This type of thesis examines a particular group of people, concept or idea while also focusing on specifics and conditions of the subject. “Global warming is real and is caused by human activity, not natural changes in the climate” is a descriptive thesis sample. Features of a descriptive thesis include:
- Pays attention to evidence that can be confirmed by any layperson;
- Focuses on logic;
- Includes analysis, measurement, explanation and interpretation.
- Prescriptive thesis: This refers to talking about how things should be. For example, “Global warming must be stopped” is an example of a prescriptive thesis. This type of thesis appeals to the values of people and their perspective on what is good or bad.
What is a thesis statement?
A thesis statement explains your core theme or argument in a few sentences to readers. Writing a thesis statement consists of two aspects:
- The topic discussed in the thesis to explain what you are writing about;
- The perspective in the thesis which tells people your ideas on the chosen topic.
For example, looking at the thesis title, ‘All successful university students have certain characteristics’, the main theme in this statement is about university students. However, the perspective is about the topic that all successful students possess similar characteristics.
A thesis statement template should do the following:
- Convey the significance of the topic to the readers;
- Help in chartering a course for the entire essay;
- Create an argument that may be disputed by others.
Where is the thesis statement positioned in a paper?
Ideally, a thesis statement should be presented near the beginning of the paper. You should avoid keeping it as your first sentence and instead place it towards the end of the first paragraph in your paper.
Sample thesis titles
If you have doubts with regards to what a thesis statement looks like, then here are a few thesis statement examples to get a better idea:
- Immunizations should be made compulsory;
- Today’s generation are very dependent on technology;
- Why cyberbullying should be stopped;
- Sex education should be a part of the school curriculum;
- Why is reading good for children;
- Corporate firms should decrease work hours to reduce stress.
How to write a thesis
Writing a thesis for the first time can be difficult if you have no idea how to format it and what to include in the different elements of a thesis. Here is a typical thesis format to keep in mind:
Introduction: Every proper introduction has two aims; giving the readers a synopsis of your thesis and gaining their interest in the essay. An introduction of any thesis should comprise of the following:
- Background: This sets the tone for the thesis and it should convince readers that your topic is important. Writingatheses is similar to having a discussion with yourself. So, imagine starting off the discussion in the following ways:
- Talk about an event that occurred in the recent past;
- Take a case study or an example that is relevant to your thesis;
- Research and paraphrase documents that are applicable to your topic.
- Scope: The next step in your introduction is to define the scope vis-à-vis the information to be included and the area of specialization. Limiting the scope can be a time-consuming process but it also makes it more interesting as it allows you to study the issue in-depth. Your research question should also be a part of this element and it will assist you in the form of a guide throughout the thesis.
- Outline: This section discusses the synopsis of the critical points of your thesis. The outline helps in organizing all your ideas and can be used as a guide while completing the thesis.
Theory: In this section, the data collected is analyzed in a scientific or scholarly manner. The findings are then included in this section.
Method: This part contains information that will help in persuading the reader about the theory presented in your thesis. It should also include the calculations and procedures used to analyze the collected data to arrive at the theoretical conclusion. The assumptions and limitations present in the theory section should be clearly mentioned here as well, otherwise the readers might get confused.
Analysis: This section, also known as the results section, is considered to be the highlight of any thesis. The obtained analysis should be organized in a structured form to ensure it is clear to understand. It is advisable to check published theses for structuring suggestions. You can also include tables and graphs for greater emphasis.
Discussion: The discussion section is considered to be very important in a thesis. You should ensure you have enough word count here to explain the importance of the results to show that your claims are actually true.
Conclusion or summarising: The final element of the thesis can be presented in different forms. Some theses may require a strong conclusion to end the argument, while others may just summarise to reinforce the claims made. It is advised to avoid using the same words here that were used in the thesis statement or in the abstract.
Tips for writing a strong thesis
- Think properly about the questions that you want your thesis to include;
- Categorize your thesis into accurately defined stages;
- Do not depend entirely on your academic advisor;
- It is not a requirement that you have to write the chapters in your thesis in a chronological order, instead you should write the chapters in the order you are comfortable with
- Pace yourself; write in short bursts and turn off your phone for this duration.
If you want to learn and attempt to write a thesis, The Toronto School of Management (TSoM) has included it in all its programs as a part of the curriculum. TSoM offers courses in Business, Hospitality and Tourism, Big Data, Accounting and Professional Development.