Let’s take a look at the components of this form:
1. Why? History theses answer the question, why, or, occasionally, how. Who, what, where, and when are important too, but why and how make an argument. 
2. Person/persons. History is about people. Abstract nouns (capitalism, war, society, etc.) are important, but a thesis without people lacks life.
3. Something surprising. The function of any scholarship is to explore the unknown and the mysterious. Challenge yourself with difficult questions.
4. Plausible explanation. A good way to know that you have formed a good question is if it forces you to choose among interpretations. The question, who wrote “A Utilitarian View of the Monitor”s Fight”? has only one right answer (Herman Melville). The question, why did Melville write “A Utilitarian View of the Monitor”s Fight”? has many plausible answers. Like the second example, the most thorough theses note exactly who believes or believed an alternative explanation.
5. Better or more complete explanation. Not all answers are equally good. Some are plain wrong; they cannot be supported with evidence (Melville was trying to impress Adah Isaacs Menken ). Others account for some, but not all, of the available evidence (Americans were impressed by the power of the Monitor ). The task of a thesis is to show that your explanation explains words or deeds that were not explained before.
Not all good thesis statements need to take this particular form, but most good theses present all of these elements. Show that your argument can explain more evidence than can a rival, and you have yourself a thesis.
Perhaps some students are told not to begin a sentence with "because" to avoid sentence fragments
(something like "Because Mary and Samantha arrived at the bus station before noon" is a sentence fragment), but it is perfectly
acceptable to begin a sentence with "because" as long as the sentence is complete (as in "Because Mary and Samantha arrived at
the bus station before noon, I did not see them at the station.")
Simple, Compound, and Complex Sentences from the Writing Center at Texas A & M This page was last updated on January 26, 2015 . Copyright Randy Rambo , 2012.