1. Determine the type, purpose, and audience of your paper.
2. Ask a question, then make the answer your thesis statement.
3. Take a stance, then ensure that it is provable.
4. State it in two parts: a clear topic and a brief summary of what you will say.
5. Limit the thesis to one or two sentences.
an explanation of the topic or purpose of a research paper
A good practice is to put the thesis statement at the end of your introduction so you can use it to lead into the body of your paper. This allows you, as the writer, to lead up to the thesis statement instead of diving directly into the topic. If you place the thesis statement at the beginning, your reader may forget or be confused about the main idea by the time he/she reaches the end of the introduction. Remember, a good introduction conceptualizes and anticipates the thesis statement.
An essay is a piece of writing that intends to make a single point. That point becomes the basis of your thesis statement. You should have this point in mind while writing the essay as it will keep you on track. The entire essay should be focused on proving the point of your thesis statement.