How to Generate a Thesis Statement if the Topic is Assigned? Almost all assignments, no matter how complicated, can be reduced to a single question. Your first step, then, is to distill the assignment into a specific question. For example, if your assignment is, "Write a report to the local school board explaining the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth_grade class," turn the request into a question like, "What are the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth_grade class?" After you've chosen the question your essay will answer, compose one or two complete sentences answering that question. Q: "What are the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth_grade class?" A: "The potential benefits of using computers in a fourth_grade class are . . ." OR A: "Using computers in a fourth_grade class promises to improve . . ." The answer to the question is the thesis statement for the essay.
Now you have a working thesis! Included in this working thesis is a reason for the war and some idea of how the two sides disagreed over this reason. As you write the essay, you will probably begin to characterize these differences more precisely, and your working thesis may start to seem too vague. Maybe you decide that both sides fought for moral reasons, and that they just focused on different moral issues. You end up revising the working thesis into a final thesis that really captures the argument in your paper: While both Northerners and Southerners believed they fought against tyranny and oppression, Northerners focused on the oppression of slaves while Southerners defended their own right to self_government.
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