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Thesis Essay


A thesis essay is a writing project that one prepares in order to meet the requirements of a significant portion of one's education, such as a bachelor's or master's degree. Thesis essays discuss a chosen subject persuasively, seeking to convince readers that the writer's position is valid, verifiable, and most logically and/or aesthetically probable from among the other possible perspectives.

Thesis essays can cover a wide variety of academic disciplines; however, they are most likely to deal with subjects from the fine arts or the humanities. Theses from the sciences or from mathematics are more likely to expound upon a certain experiment, method, or equation, and while each of these may produce a thesis that persuades the reader to a certain position, the writing will probably convince the reader by weight of fact, quantifiable research, and reproducible data. In contrast, thesis essays assume total authority over the subject and simply state their opinions in the most convincing way possible, conceivably without relying upon the research of other authoritative figures. One field that highly values a well-written thesis essay that stands on its own authority is literature; the mark of a good thesis essay in literature is whether it makes a point that no one else has heretofore made and whether it states that point articulately and with sound argumentation. However, most academic fields require that the student who writes a thesis essay balance personal opinion with interaction with fact and with other authorities on the subject.

One potential pitfall in thesis essays that the student must avoid is writing with no prior research. Even if one does not use outside research as a pillar within the thesis essay, one should still have read on the topic at great length, because knowing the perspectives contained in outside research gives the writer the necessary maneuverability within the topic. The student who knows what other people have said about the topic knows how the thesis must argue its point in order to trump the other perspectives.


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