Topic Sentences

Topic sentences are like good movie trailers. A good trailer will accurately preview the content of a movie without spoiling the whole thing. Likewise, a good topic sentence will accurately preview the paragraph that it introduces.

In order for your paragraph to make logical sense, the topic sentence must be a claim. The remaining sentences in the paragraph are called supporting statements. These are sentences which explain and justify the topic sentence.

More specifically, a topic sentence should do two things. First, it should connect to and help explain a part of your thesis. Second, it should summarize the analysis of that paragraph. As a result, a topic sentence should never summarize evidence. Instead, it should summarize your analysis.

Example of a Good Topic Sentence: Notice that it provides analysis or makes an arguable claim about the paragraph.

Google is dumbing us down by training our brains to expect quick, simple results without much effort.

Example of a Poor Topic Sentence: Notice that it simply summarizes the evidence discussed.


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