A preview statement, also known as a thesis statement, comes near the beginning of an essay or speech and gives the audience a preview of the material's content. Occasionally additional preview statements are used later in the content to provide transitions and prepare the audience for upcoming material.
The preview statement comes in the introduction of the material after the initial sentences designed to capture the audience's attention. The preview statement lays out the main points of the essay or speech so that the reader or listener knows what is important and is prepared to pay attention to the right things. The exact nature of the preview statement varies depending on the nature of the piece.
For informative speeches and essays, the preview statement lists the main points using appropriate connecting words. For example: "First I will share the main standards of the breed, then I will describe the judging procedure and finally I will list some terminology used at dog shows."
Persuasive speeches and essays have preview statements that focus on the points being proven while briefly surveying the evidence to be presented. For example: "I propose that eggs are part of a healthy diet, and that current scientific research shows that they do not raise cholesterol levels or increase the risk of heart disease." An ideal preview statement flows naturally from the introductory material, creating a smooth transition to the body of the speech or essay.