If you need to know what the parts and structure of an argumentative thesis are, you have come to the right place. We know that writing a thesis is a difficult process in the life of every student. For this reason, in today’s post we tell you which parts you cannot miss and we give you some examples to activate your work.
What is an argumentative thesis?
Perhaps the name can make you dizzy a bit. But don’t worry: we’ll explain what it’s all about.
An argumentative thesis or thesis in general is a written document that exposes a position taken with respect to some particular topic. The most important thing is that you focus your presentation based on the arguments that you will use to discuss or refute a position.
What are the parts of an argumentative thesis?
Ok, you know what it is. So, let’s move on to the parts of an argumentative thesis.
We will take some examples of a Final Degree Project from the National University of Córdoba . Thus, you can have a reference of how to do your academic work.
It is the gateway to your work. On this first page you must include: title, your name and surname, that of your director, date of presentation and the data of your university.
This section is optional. But it is the most personal and emotional. In a few paragraphs, thank those who accompanied you, inspired you or gave you a hand in the process.
It is a table of contents, where you will offer a screenshot of the general structure of the development. It does not usually occupy many pages of extension; two or three at most. If you do it in Word, do not forget to number all the pages of the body of the text and update the index at the end.
This part is a synthesis of the elements and fundamental aspects of the research work. Its characteristics respond to a brief and concise format. Therefore, you will record the objectives, the methodology and the results obtained. The advice is that you do it when you have finished the whole process. Sometimes it is also followed by an abstract , which is the English version of the abstract.
They are a set of essential words that condense the content of your thesis. In some cases, they must also be added in English ( keywords ).
It is one of the indispensable parts that cannot be missing. You will present the theme of the project, its arguments and how you will approach it. It should be a short and precise section. You should only incorporate pertinent and relevant information to invite the reader to continue reading. For this, it is important that you use discursive strategies of continuity, with short and simple sentences.
For example, in WhatsApp, the oralization of the text (Vanzo, 2017), the introduction begins as follows:
At the beginning of the 21st century, the new information and communication technologies (ICT) such as the Internet and mobile telephony have impacted our daily lives, causing a significant change in the language used by its users. From this new form of communication, a cyberculture has been created, that is, information has become a social phenomenon and an object of value that must be consumed: “being informed” today means being on-line in at all times, i.e. (connected) reachable by all.
In recent years, with the mobile phone industry designing new technologies and the range of options offered to users, improvements have been reported in the mobile text messaging service or system: SMS has become obsolete (Short Message Service). The mobile phone and the Internet are hybridizing with the new models of smartphone devices like the phones we use today; Consequently, they have generated the incorporation of a new application for virtual conversation: WhatsApp. (Vanzo, 2017, p. 5).
Objectives articulate and unfold the goals of your argumentative thesis. In turn, these are divided into two main types:
General: the broader goal that your university work pursues.
Specific: they are included within the general objective. For this reason, they are specific sub-objectives that individualize specific actions.
If we continue with examples of the work cited above, we can see how the author has formulated the following objectives for her research:
Identify the phenomenon of cyberlanguage as a particular code, differentiated from the characteristics of written language.
- Characterize this phenomenon in linguistic terms through one of the genres of the network: WhatsApp.
- Detect the features of orality and writing in electronic texts.
- Analyze the uses of speech acts at the pragmatic level, in student productions: adolescents and young adults.
- Analyze the identified linguistic marks of cyberlanguage at the lexical-semantic, morphosyntactic, phonetic-phonological and graphic-pragmatic levels. (Vanzo, 2017, p. 11).
Hypotheses are a kind of stake in your research. That is, you will formulate possible answers to your research problem. Do not make drama if you feel insecure at this point. Why? Because they are provisional statements and it is not always mandatory to include them.
In relation to the example that we have been exposing, let us see the hypotheses formulated:
The most viable hypothesis, apparently, the “forced” hypothesis on this subject, as can be seen by accessing the research and works recorded in the bibliography, will be: oral and written language among adolescents and adults who attend secondary school and, would be influenced by this new WhatsApp technology, which impacts it, modifying and impoverishing it to the point of compromising the lexical-semantic, morphosyntactic, phonetic-phonological and graphic-pragmatic levels. (Vanzo, 2017, p. 11).
In this section, you will explain how you will achieve the objectives defined in your thesis and what is the approach that you will follow. In addition, you will include data collection techniques, how you will delimit the sample of the chosen population and how you will analyze the data obtained.
Background check or status of the matter
The background check involves the search for previous research on the subject and study problem with which you will work. In this part, you have to show what is the current state of scientific knowledge produced in this regard. This will help you lay the groundwork for your own research. It is also known as “state of the art” or “state of the art”.
In her work, the author recovers a series of antecedents. We provide a snippet below:
On this phenomenon that concerns us, we will describe how other studies have been developed up to the time of our initiative. Research on WhatsApp is not abundant, we hardly have recent study work carried out in other countries, such is the case of Gasmi (2014), who states about the usefulness of the new generation of mobile phones, smartphones for educational purposes. , and its possible uses in teaching the English language. (Digital ated library). The author, in this digital edition, mentions a study carried out on 33 higher education students from a school in the Middle East (Oman): “The main objective of the study was to investigate the effects that mobile applications, more specifically the free messaging application WhatsApp, has on the writing skills of Omani students.” (Digital edition). (Vanzo, 2017, p. 7)
This part is made up of all the concepts, definitions and categories from which you will frame the object of study. It is important that the theories you use maintain a certain internal coherence and do not present contradictions with each other. Then, you will have to specify what those concepts are, from which authors you will take them, what is the frame of reference and what discipline does it come from.
Development of the empirical part
Not all theses entail an empirical section. However, if you will be doing fieldwork, observations, or experiments, you should include them here.
Conclusions or final considerations
Bibliography or bibliographical references
This is the list of sources and references consulted for the preparation of your thesis. Make sure they have all the required data according to the style required by your university and that they follow an alphabetical order. Some of the best known guidelines are APA, MLA and Harvard.
This part is optional, but you can add information that adds value to your thesis. For example, you can include the design of the instrument you used to collect the data. Also recordings in written format, secondary graphics, etc. In this way, your evaluators or readers will be able to access the data first-hand.