To help you get started in writing, you may find it helpful to start off with writing a little, such as a summary of your overall project and use that as a platform to develop further thinking.
I start with short pieces of summary writing, like an abstract, to identify the major strands to my argument and think about their ordering and relationship to one another.
Professor of Management, University of Exeter
Don’t be afraid to use your personal voice and reflect on your positionality. Keep in mind the question ‘Why does this matter? And why should other people care about this?’ in order to be the most persuasive you can be.
Professor of New Testament, University of Exeter
Constructing an argument: advancing ideas, supporting them with reasons or evidence, criticizing possible alternative ideas/explanations.
Professor of Philosophy, University of Exeter
Constructing an argument is about first considering and weighing up all of the evidence, then taking a position and working towards it. It must move beyond the descriptive. Summarise the evidence thematically rather than simply listing multiple studies, and support each point strongly. This requires clear explanations of the supporting evidence, what this evidence means and why that matters. It is important that writers do not assume their argument is implied and will be deduced by the reader, but that it is made explicit.
Associate lecturer and postdoctoral research associate of Psychology
The common theme around writing up a sound and robust argument is criticality. The key skill to remember though is:
Critical writing: except it is not the writing which is critical, but the thinking which underpins it.
Professor of Education, University of Exeter
For developing thesis argument, look at the resources on starting from your argument and contribution.
For more information on criticality, see this blog post.
For presenting your own voice and the importance of reading other writers’ works, refer to this blog post.