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What is Thesis Writing Anyway?

May 03, 2015 - Posted to Dissertation and its parts

Content 6

“I believe unicorns are real.” This is a thesis statement. While the child who utters this statement would be hard pressed to prove this thesis, it does, nonetheless, fall into the criteria of a dictionary definition of a “thesis.” We all make thesis statements everyday – some are based upon facts; others are yet unproven. When we become high school and college students, however, the term takes on new meaning, for when we engage in academic writing, we must have a thesis, also known as a belief or a hypothesis that we plan to prove in the essay or paper we are producing. So, if you have been wondering, “what is a thesis in writing,” you now have your answer.

Turning a Topic into a Thesis

Every time a student produces a piece of writing, s/he has a topic. It might be an essay on the use of planes in war for the first time in World War I; it might be a research paper on Shakespeare for a literature class; it could be a paper on student loan debt in an economics class. These are topics, and certainly you can find a great deal of factual information on these topics. But just gathering information and presenting it without any reflection or “point” to make, does not constitute academic writing. To get a thesis, you must ask yourself some questions about your topic. Why is this important? Do I have an opinion about this topic? What will the purpose of my writing be? What am I planning to “show,” not just tell? For example, if you were to write an essay on the use of planes for the first time in World War I, why was that important? Do you have an opinion about the use of planes in warfare? Suppose you have decided that aircraft as a tool of war made killing much more impersonal. Now, you have a thesis that you will prove through your research and writing. In school, this is often called a hypothesis. While you are probably familiar with the term hypothesis from science classes you have taken, you must now think of a hypothesis as a necessary ingredient in any kind of academic writing.

Turning a Research Question into a Thesis

Another question that might be asked is “What is a thesis paper, and how does it differ from just a normal essay or paper with a thesis?” For grad students, the term thesis obviously takes on a whole new meaning, since it is the culminating research project for their degrees. In this context, the student identifies a research question, a hypothesis, and then, in most cases, conducts original research in order to prove that hypothesis. The project is lengthy, and involves several benchmark points, beginning with a thesis proposal which must be accepted by a committee. Other sections involve a review of pertinent literature, a research design and implementation, an analysis of those results, and conclusions which demonstrate proof of the hypothesis.

The obvious difference between what is thesis writing at the high school and undergraduate levels and at the graduate school level is the depth of research involved, and the design of a research methodology to actually “test” one’s hypothesis. If you are a grad student struggling with any part of your thesis project, you certainly can turn to TrustedDisertations.com for an expert consultant to guide and assist you.


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