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Create a Working Thesis Statement

As you complete your research, create a working thesis statement. A working thesis statement tentatively answers your guiding research question. Returning to our Buddhism question, a working thesis statement might read, “Buddhism can offer several surprising strategies to the 21st American college student.” Using this working thesis as a guide, our Buddhism student might organize his or her paper as follows:

  • Introduction, including thesis statement
  • Pertinent background information on Buddhism
  • Pertinent background information on 21st century college student
  • One useful strategy at a time, totaling four
  • Conclusion

As you revise your paper through different stages, you may adjust your working thesis. Our final Buddhism thesis might read, “Although Buddhism developed in a particular time and place, it still offers surprisingly useful strategies to the American Millennial college student.”

Next, make sure you do not forgo an outline.


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