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Thesis Statements for Argument Essays:

We will use this prompt as an example:

What is the prompt asking?

Step 1: Think of the pros and cons.

Pros of corporate sponsorship: Cons of corporate sponsorship:

$ goes to improve sports programs Students are bombarded with
for all students messages to consume products
$ may be spent on books/equipment The educational atmosphere of schools is
that would improve education diminished by the ads.

Step 2: Write your thesis.

To write a thesis that takes strictly the pro side, make an assertion based on your brainstorming.
      Example: Allowing advertising in schools will lead to improved sports programs and a bigger variety of educational equipment, thus helping the school more than hurting it.

To write a thesis that strictly takes the con side, make an assertion based on your brainstorming.
      Example: Advertising in schools does nothing more than allow students to be constantly bombarded with consumer messages, therefore diminishing the educational atmosphere of the school.

To write a thesis that is a qualification (that looks at both sides – which is really what this particular prompt wants) you must write a complex sentence beginning with a subordinate clause. The subordinate clause will begin with although or while. Put the weaker point (your concession) in the subordinate clause. Your main argument goes in the independent clause.

To write a qualifying thesis that mostly sides with the cons:
      Example: Although it is true that increased funding may help schools do a better job, corporate sponsorships create a consumer atmosphere that is not appropriate to an educational environment.

To write a qualifying thesis that mostly sides with the pros:
      Example: While corporate sponsorships may tend to emphasize spending over learning, their contributions to educational and sports programs are invaluable to the school.

Now, you try it! You may work with a partner, but...

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