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A conclusion can have various specific meanings depending on the context. It most often assumes, however, some kind of cause-and-effect reasoning or scheme, with the conclusion being result of what preceded it. In everyday speech, any thought one arrives at through thinking based on facts and information can be called a conclusion. However, a conclusion is most commonly thought of as the last paragraph in an essay.


In argument mapping and informal logic a conclusion is given a different order and is placed at the start of an argument and not at the end.


In research and experimentation, conclusions are determinations made by studying the results of preeceding work within some methodology (for example the scientific method). These often take the form of theory or theories. The conclusion is typically the result of a discussion of the premises. Without a discussion of the premises, there are no conclusion, only assertions and without evidence, that is allegations. Naturally, the accuracy of a given conclusion is dependent on the truth of the chosen .


A conclusion is the final section of an essay in which the writer ties together what was presented in the passage, summing up the main point, explaining how the thesis was proven, and successfully closing the discussion. The conclusion is often the most difficult part of an essay to write, and many writers feel that they have nothing left to say after having presented points proving their thesis in the body of the paper. However, the conclusion is often the part of the paper that a reader remembers best, and thus must be effective to be strong. This definition also applies more broadly to any progressive academic or artistic work.

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