For some assignments you will want to state or claim something (sometimes called a proposition or thesis statement) which you then explain, defend and develop to a conclusion. Section 3 gives you words and phrases for talking about propositions, assumptions and theory explicitly. Note that just talking about a proposition or theory is not the same thing as actually making an argument, developing a theory or analysing assumptions. Actually doing these things involves a series of stages – analysing ideas, evaluating evidence and drawing conclusions – and so usually takes up the whole essay or report. You will need to use vocabulary from many sections of this book in order to complete these different steps, particularly sections 20–30.
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