College has always been a process that introduces students to academic challenges that are not present during high school. So when my professor assigned Gerald Graff’s essay, “Hidden Intellectualism”, I thought this was his thesis. “Missing the opportunity to tap into such street smarts and channel them into good academic work.” I thought that this was his thesis because it explains the main idea of the essay but I assumed its purpose because of where it’s placed. I am so used to reading an essay in high school where the thesis is located right in the first paragraph. So naturally that is where I look for it.
However, with more reading I knew that the following is the thesis, not only because it discusses the main topic, but because it clearly shows what the author was making his argument about. “But students would be more prone to take on intellectual identities if we encouraged them to do so at first on subjects that interest them rather than the ones that interest us”. Your thesis is one of the major aspects of a good college paper because it shows exactly what the main claim of the entire paper is going to be about.
Three main points to take out of a thesis is, is it your main claim or big idea that directly answers a question about the assignment of the paper. Is it written with the reader in mind with a road map they could follow along easily and lastly when you do go back through revising and reflecting does it makes your thesis clearer. In my 1109 class our task for eight weeks was to observe a tutor and writer working together during fifty minute sessions. This took place at the Writer’s Studio here on Newark’s OSU campus. The tutor I observed was Wyatt Bowman and the student was Adam Bielby.
Also where it clearly shows what the author was making his argument about. Learning what a thesis is, like it should make your main claim also a road map for the reader and lastly should always be revised makes my life a lot easier when reading. I know and have a full understanding of a thesis. I never pictured growing and excelling in an English class with both knowledge and understanding like I have. It not only feels like I’ve won my first battle, but I am so much more confident and ready to take on another war in my next English 1110.03 class.
- Bielby, Adam Personal interview question #7, 8, April, 2014 Bowman, Wyatt Personal interview question #7,#10, 8, April, 2014
- Graff Gerald. ‘Hidden Intellectualism’ Ed. Gerald Graff, and Cathy Birkenstein. They Say I Say. Tardiff Elyssa, Brizee Allen, “Thesis Statement”, Purdue Owl, 2014-02-10 10:44:43