Criteria for effective thesis statements

1. It must be arguable. That is, it must be a statement where more than one point of view is possible and credible.

2. It should forecast the overall movement of the argument.

3. It should be about a topic that has some significance beyond the individual writer's idiosyncratic preferences. That is, it should have relevance to a wider audience than to the writer him- or herself and a few friends.

4. The writer must be confident s/he can develop and argue the thesis. That is the writer must think through what arguments and evidence would be necessary to develop his or her thesis effectively and convincingly.

5. A better thesis statement will embody the main conflict or issue.

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