The Thesis statement in Compare/Contrast Essay

A compare and contrast essay shouldn’t have a surprise ending. In other words, be sure to state your opinion clearly in the thesis statement.

If you don’t state your opinion, you risk a ho-hum thesis. Notice the difference between these two thesis statements:

“There are many differences between organic produce and conventional produce.”
“Organic produce is superior to conventional produce.”

The second thesis is better, but it is still a bit of a “so what?” thesis.

Why might your opinion be important to your audience?

Consider how this thesis statement might resonate better with a wider audience:

“Organic produce is better for you than conventional produce.”

To keep your essay organized and focused, it’s best to list from two to four points of argument in your thesis.

“Organic produce is superior to conventional produce because of its nutrition and safety.”

Finally, if it makes sense, you can work in a reference to the similarities if it’s a contrast essay, or a difference if it’s a compare essay:

“Although similar in taste, organic produce is superior to conventional produce because of its nutrition and safety.”

or

“Organic produce is superior to conventional produce because of its nutrition and safety; although it can be more expensive, the benefits are worth the extra cost.”

Point-by-Point Example Outline

Thesis statement: Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” and “The Black Cat” have themes of superstition, sorrow, and judgment.

Point A: Superstition
Subject 1. “The Raven”
Subject 2. “The Black Cat”

Point B: Sorrow
Subject 1. “The Raven”
Subject 2. “The Black Cat”

Point C: Judgment
Subject 1. “The Raven”
Subject 2. “The Black Cat”

Conclusion