How to Write a Good Thesis Statement for History Papers
How to write a good history essay? This question bothers a lot of students who get such an assignment. The main thing is to fully examine the research question. Make sure you clearly understand its formulation. Think what methods are the most appropriate. It is very important to write a strong first paragraph which should introduce your topic well and arouse readers’ burning interest. When composing this paragraph, you need to show that you are well aware of the subject. Here, you need to mention the main terms and definitions you are going to deal with. You may divide your research question into the smaller ones. Each of them will be discussed in a separate paragraph. Finally, the vital thing is to formulate a sound thesis statement presenting the main argument, i.e. the key point of your essay. It is a fundamental aspect of any paper.
Main Peculiarities of a Thesis Statement
In order to understand how to write a good thesis statement for history papers, it is necessary to know what it serves for. A thesis statement:
- informs readers about the investigated subject;
- gives answer to the posed research question (note a thesis is the way you interpret the topic, but it is not the very topic);
- presents a viewpoint that may be disputed;
- is written in one sentence and illustrates the point that will be discussed in the body of your paper.
When you get your assignment, it may not be indicated that writing a thesis statement is a must. In this case, it is better to talk to your professor to find out whether a thesis statement is required. However, if you need to analyze the issue, identify cause and effect of a certain phenomenon, etc., it means you have to write a thesis statement and put forward arguments to support it.
Creating a Thesis Statement
Writing a great thesis statement requires careful thinking about the subject. You will not be able to produce a Master’s thesis right after reading your task. One should conduct research to gather relevant facts about the addressed matter. Then, you need to analyze the collected data and formulate the so-called working thesis.
If you have written your thesis but do not know whether it is suitable for the paper, you should consult your professor about it. However, you may also assess the thesis on your own. When you read your first draft containing a working thesis, answer the following questions:
- Have I properly answered the research question? When the working thesis is composed, read your task again. It will help you change your thesis if necessary.
- Is my thesis debatable? If your thesis statement just provides facts about the subject, it will sound more like a summary and no one will argue about it.
- Have I created a precise thesis statement? A broad thesis will not highlight the main point clearly.
- Is my thesis clear? If no questions arise after reading your statement, then no clarification is required.
- Do the provided facts support my thesis? If your thesis does not contradict the paper body, then you have understood how to write a good thesis statement. Otherwise, you may need to rewrite it.
- Read your thesis. Do you understand the main idea? If you have any questions, perhaps you need to compose more informative thesis. Add some details so that readers can comprehend what you are focused on.
Let us analyze a thesis statement sample so that you understand how to produce it:
Imagine that you study history of the USA, namely its development during the 19th century. You are to write a paper on the topic “Why did the North and South Fight in the Civil War?” You may create the following thesis: “The northern and southern states fought the war for different reasons.” This is a poor thesis statement, as it does not provide any additional data.
Check the following thesis statement:
“Though slavery was the main reason for which the North and South fought the Civil war, the former wanted to settle the moral issues, while the latter aimed at preserving its establishments.” This thesis clearly states the reason for the Civil War between the mentioned states.
Writing a strong Master’s thesis is of great importance. If you compose it properly, you will be able to examine the issue in detail and construct your paper well.