A well-written thesis statement establishes the central focus of a paper. By reading the thesis statement, readers should be able to determine what the author of the paper will aim to prove throughout the essay. By composing an engaging and effective thesis, writers can create a compelling beginning to their paper that both draws readers in and creates excitement about the paper content.

Argumentative

All thesis statements should be argumentative in nature, reports the University of Houston. Do not begin your essay with a factual statement, such as, "The sky is blue," because this statement is irrefutable and, therefore, not something you can effectively argue.

Specific

Effective thesis statements indicate specifically what the essay will be about. Do not make an overly broad statement in your thesis, such as, "Animal cruelty is bad." Instead, compose a statement that is direct and to the point, such as, "Animal cruelty has an impact on all humans." By composing a specific thesis statement, you increase the likelihood that you can effectively prove your argument.

Engaging

When you begin your essay with a thesis statement that attracts interest, you engage your audience and entice them to keep reading. Your thesis statement should be as provocative as possible, given your topic. Along with the rest of your introductory paragraph, your thesis serves as a hook, pulling your audience into your piece.

Alludes to Supports

Although you do not want to go into specifics regarding your supports until your body paragraphs, you should make allusions to these supports in your thesis. For example, if you are going to argue that students should be taught basic sex education in elementary school and your body paragraphs include information about the proven effectiveness of such programs and what these programs should include, you could compose a thesis statement that says, "While some feel that elementary students are too young to receive basic sex education, programs aimed at young learners can be beneficial if properly organized."

Encompassing of Paper Content

You should not discuss anything in your paper that is not stated, or at least hinted at, in your thesis. This statement should encompass all of the topics you will explore within the essay as a whole, even if it only broadly hints at these points. If your thesis states that your paper will be about the importance of student participation in sports, you should not discuss the rules of soccer in your paper, as this discussion is not directly germane to the thesis you laid out.