You may have been taught at some point that you should use expressions like “I think,” “I believe,” and “I feel” while expressing your opinion. While these phrases can be helpful, in academic English, writers often present their thesis without using expressions like this: “Dickens is still an important writer.” “Climate change is the greatest threat to humanity.” Thesis statements in persuasive writing are frequently presented as statements of fact, because the writers is expected to provide proof for them, rather than just saying that it is what they feel or believe.

When writing in an academic register, whether for informative or persuasive purposes, make a point of avoiding using first person and second person pronouns. First person can be used in personal narratives. When telling a story about your own life, it is appropriate to use words like I/me/mine to describe your experiences.

It is expected that any ideas that you do not cite are your own ideas. Therefore, it is unnecessary to add information that identifies your ideas as your own, and necessary to identify the sources of all ideas that are not your own.

“In my opinion, this research is innovative.”

“This research is innovative.”

Making information more precise is another way to make your writing more objective. Avoid adjectives and adverbs that express opinion or vagueness: replace assessments such as “very interesting” or “fairly effective” with citations or data. One important exception to these guidelines is reflective writing, in which the writer is encouraged to write personally.