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Reagan H.
Tutor specializing in math, English, piano/music, etc.
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Writing
TutorMe
Question:

How do you write a thesis statement for an analytical paper?

Reagan H.
Answer:

The first step is to determine your topic. You might have been assigned one by your teacher. If this is not the case, then begin to brainstorm. Let's analyze Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein" as our example topic. You might start with something like this: "Mary Shelley's 'Frankenstein' is a great novel.'" Although this might be true, we need something more specific, but this is a good start. The topic didn't ask you to summarize, it asked you to analyze. We need to ask why it is such a great novel. Let's give it a second try: "In 'Frankenstein', Mary Shelley develops a contrast between nature and nurture." This thesis, although still weak, has much more potential than the first one. However, it still doesn't reveal what the analysis will reveal. We are still asking, "So what?" Now, what happens if we answer this question? "Through it's contrasting winter and summer scenes, Shelley's 'Frankenstein' suggests the characters learn differences between nature and nurture in order to survive." You can go in any direction with a thesis. The main rules are that you reveal enough detail about the topic, and cover each point.

Music Theory
TutorMe
Question:

What is the difference between a natural, harmonic, and melodic minor?

Reagan H.
Answer:

A natural minor is the same note-pattern as the major scale, but it starts in a difference place. For example, an A minor has the same note pattern as a C major (no flats or sharps), but instead of starting on C, it starts on A. In a harmonic minor, the 7th note is often raised a half step. So, in the A minor scale, the G would be raised to a G#. A melodic minor can sometimes be complicated. In the melodic minor, you raise the 6th AND the 7th notes on the way up, and then lower them on the way down. So in the A minor melodic scale, you would raise the F to an F# and the G to a G#, and then lower them on the way down.

English
TutorMe
Question:

When is a semicolon used in a sentence, and why are they used?

Reagan H.
Answer:

Semicolons are used in sentences to connect two independent clauses (two ideas) when a comma is not strong enough. For example, "Some people prefer to take notes on a computer; most students prefer to write notes by hand." But make sure that you don't accidentally use a comma in place of a semicolon! For example: Incorrect: "I love dogs, however, I hate the way they smell." Correct: "I love dogs; however, I hate the way they smell."

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