The thesis statement is the central argument of your essay which offers a position on a topic.
The thesis statement is often introduced in an essay with the words, 'This essay will argue …' or 'In this essay I will argue …' A thesis statement always asserts something.
To start you off, and to minimise the likelihood of writer’s block, a useful exercise is to do a ‘brainstorm’ of all your ideas in connection with the essay title. It can be much less stressful to throw all your thoughts down on paper, before you start trying to find answers to these questions.
It can be a way of making a lot of progress quite quickly. In these early stages of your thinking you may not be sure which of your ideas you want to follow up and which you will be discarding.
Each paragraph should contain a topic sentence, supporting sentences with evidence and a concluding sentence.
An academic paragraph is generally 4-7 sentences long.
The word limit adds to the challenge by requiring that all of these skills be demonstrated within a relatively small number of words.
Producing incisive and clear written work within a word limit is an important skill in itself, which will be useful in many aspects of life beyond university.
Common criticism given to students is that their essay: These elements will be used to give a broad overall structure to this Study Guide.
The most important starting point is to listen carefully to what the essay title is telling you.