A thesis statement is your conclusion or answer to the question or problem you have chosen for your paper. (If you are uncertain what we mean by a conclusion, re-read chapter 2 in Asking the Right Questions.) The thesis must be narrow, focused, clear, complete, and unified. Most important, it must be truly debatable, not a statement that everyone pretty much already agrees upon. It must control the development of your paper. Until you have matured as a writer, it is safer to put the thesis statement where people expect to find it: as the last sentence of your introduction.
You must have an approved thesis statement for your paper; your unit professor will explain his or her procedures for giving approval.
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