Definition of topic sentence in US English:

topic sentence


  • A sentence that expresses the main idea of the paragraph in which it occurs.

    • ‘As a group, the class evaluated each topic sentence to define qualities of a good topic sentence, and possible strategies for writing them.’
    • ‘Make sure to follow any instructions that your teacher might have given you such as the specific size of the display and any items, such as a topic sentence or results, that must be included.’
    • ‘Even when I write a scene for a novel, I sometimes subconsciously begin a paragraph with a topic sentence - a perfect metaphor for science, but nearly fatal for art.’
    • ‘Once categories are established, the topic sentences can be generated, and so on.’
    • ‘We were to underline the thesis in the first paragraph and put brackets around the topic sentence of each body paragraph.’
    • ‘I would have liked to see more topic sentences and summary tables and fewer lists.’
    • ‘For example, I wrote to a technical writing student on a cover letter for a resume, ‘Why might explaining the significance of your work experience here help support your topic sentence and increase your credibility?’’
    • ‘An AP story uses a disjunction of relevance in a slightly different way, to weaken a topic sentence.’
    • ‘What children need most from parents are not rules of grammar or how to write a topic sentence for a school essay, but simple encouragement to write and write often.’
    • ‘And so the story goes, on and on, a catalogue of mutually exclusive and contradictory topic sentences about a pseudo-mythical girlfriend.’
    • ‘This logical pattern is deductive and is typically opened by a topic sentence in each paragraph (which are used to separate ideas), followed by supporting statements, helping to develop the main idea and to present related sub-topics.’
    • ‘I demand topic sentences in every paragraph these days, for one.’
    • ‘Central ideas can be identified by the repetition of words or phrases, especially as section titles, displayed quotations, graphics, or topic sentences of paragraphs.’
    • ‘Can you identify a clear topic sentence that acts as the paragraph's thesis statement?’
    • ‘And as he explains persuasively, intelligent skimming is a complex skill, not at all just a matter of looking at topic sentences or otherwise dipping randomly into a passing stream of text.’
    • ‘I aggregate their topic sentences, then return with SurfSaver to harvest their work.’
    • ‘Why are topic sentences important to paragraphs and essays?’
    • ‘After your explanation in class, I now know that I need to do some revision on my topic sentences so that I clearly explain that one paragraph is about men and the other is about women.’
    • ‘So, a typical first-year student paper can look pretty smooth - an introduction and conclusion, paragraphs with topic sentences, minimal surface errors - and yet after four or five pages manages to spell out very little.’
    • ‘I read the above essay and just see a bunch of topic sentences strewn haphazardly about, totally devoid of any supporting sentences.’


topic sentence