How to present information in the U.S. : Deductive vs. Inductive Reasoning (Part 1)

The way we present information in the United States may be different from the way you do. Why? Communication is cultural. 

When writing a speech or cover letter to a college/university or for a job, you should tell the American listener or reader the main point first. The rest of the speech or letter should detail the support for that point.

The U.S. is often called a ‘fast food’ nation. This is not relevant only to food, but to the way we want to obtain information.

In many cultures – Asian and some European for example, audiences want to hear the details leading to a main point first, and then hear the main point. (Inductive Reasoning)

In the United States, we like to know the main point first, and then the details that support it. (Deductive Reasoning)

This is usually the case in speeches, lectures, documentaries, and essays.


How does this affect you?

Let’s take the example of someone writing a speech:

The introduction should contain a thesis statement. The thesis statement tells the audience what the main point of your speech is.

Thesis Statement Example:

“The global village is extending itself to more students studying abroad than ever before. Students who enter new cultures will need academic support from the educational institutions they attend.”

By reading this, you know what my speech will be about. In the rest of the speech, the details of why, when and how international students should/can receive support would be explained.

For application/letters, the same rule applies:

Thesis Statement Example:

“As a curious and motivated student, I am ready to leave my native country in search of broadening my learning. Attending [insert name] will provide me the environment to gain new perspectives and experience new challenges in order to reach my personal and professional goals.”

By reading this, you know what my letter will be about. In the rest of the letter, I would explain why and how attending that institution would help me achieve my goals. My personal and professional goals would be part of the details.

Information about Thesis statements can be found here:


Post a Comment

Related Post