This part of the introduction paragraph is important to set the limits of your essay and let the reader know exactly which aspect of the topic you will address. The thesis statement often takes the form of a strong argument for a particular position.
As you research and write, your argument might change focus or direction as you learn more. Whether you write your introduction first, last or somewhere in between, you should return to it and check that it matches the content of the essay.
Essay Writing: The Basics
Make sure you have included only necessary and relevant information. To see our introduction in context, take a look at the full essay example. You have a strong introduction - now make sure the rest of your essay is just as good. Have a language expert improve your writing. Check your paper for plagiarism in 10 minutes.
Beginning the Academic Essay
Generate your APA citations for free! Home Knowledge Base Essay How to write an essay introduction. Date updated: April 8, A good introduction paragraph is both engaging and informative. Give context and background on your topic. Set up the focus and purpose of your essay. What can proofreading do for your paper? The first sentence is engaging and relevant. The topic has been introduced with necessary background information. Define key terms for the purposes of your essay.
Your topic may include broad concepts or terms of art that you will need to define for your reader. Your introduction isn't the place to reiterate basic dictionary definitions. However, if there is a key term that may be interpreted differently depending on the context, let your readers know how you're using that term. Definitions also come in handy in legal or political essays, where a term may have different meanings depending on the context in which they are used.
Move from the general to the specific. It can be helpful to think of your introduction as an upside-down pyramid. With your hook sitting on top, your introduction welcomes your readers to the broader world in which your thesis resides. Draw your reader in gradually. For example, if you're writing an essay about drunk driving fatalities, you might start with an anecdote about a particular victim.
Then you could provide national statistics, then narrow it down further to statistics for a particular gender or age group. Make your point. After you've set up the context within which you're making your argument, tell your readers the point of your essay. Use your thesis statement to directly communicate the unique point you will attempt to make through your essay.
Avoid including fluff such as "In this essay, I will attempt to show Your outline should be specific, unique, and provable. Through your essay, you'll make points that will show that your thesis statement is true — or at least persuade your readers that it's most likely true.
Describe how you're going to prove your point. Round out your introduction by providing your readers with a basic roadmap of what you will say in your essay to support your thesis statement. In most cases, this doesn't need to be more than a sentence.
For example, if you're writing an essay about the unification of Italy, you might list 3 obstacles to unification. In the body of your essay, you would discuss details about how each of those obstacles was addressed or overcome.
Write a Strong Essay Introduction in 4 Steps | Interactive Example
Instead of just listing all of your supporting points, sum them up by stating "how" or "why" your thesis is true. For example, instead of saying, "Phones should be banned from classrooms because they distract students, promote cheating, and make too much noise," you might say "Phones should be banned from classrooms because they act as an obstacle to learning. Transition smoothly into the body of your essay. In many cases, you'll find that you can move straight from your introduction to the first paragraph of the body.
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Some introductions, however, may require a short transitional sentence at the end to flow naturally into the rest of your essay. If you find yourself pausing or stumbling between the paragraphs, work in a transition to make the move smoother. You can also have friends or family members read your easy. If they feel it's choppy or jumps from the introduction into the essay, see what you can do to smooth it out. Read essays by other writers in your discipline. What constitutes a good introduction will vary widely depending on your subject matter. A suitable introduction in one academic discipline may not work as well in another.
Take note of conventions that are commonly used by writers in that discipline. Make a brief outline of the essay based on the information presented in the introduction. Then look at that outline as you read the essay to see how the essay follows it to prove the writer's thesis statement. Keep your introduction short and simple. Generally, your introduction should be between 5 and 10 percent of the overall length of your essay. If you're writing a page paper, your introduction should be approximately 1 page.
Always follow your instructor's guidelines for length. These rules can vary at times based on genre or form of writing. Write your introduction after you write your essay. Some writers prefer to write the body of the essay first, then go back and write the introduction.
It's easier to present a summary of your essay when you've already written it. For example, you may realize that you're using a particular term that you need to define in your introduction.
The purpose of the introduction
Revise your introduction to fit your essay. If you wrote your introduction first, go back and make sure your introduction provides an accurate roadmap of your completed paper.
Even if you wrote an outline, you may have deviated from your original plans. Given the shortness of the introduction, every sentence should be essential to your reader's understanding of your essay. Structure your introduction effectively. An essay introduction is fairly formulaic, and will have the same basic elements regardless of your subject matter or academic discipline. While it's short, it conveys a lot of information.
The next couple of sentences create a bridge between your hook and the overall topic of the rest of your essay. End your introduction with your thesis statement and a list of the points you will make in your essay to support or prove your thesis statement. Alexander Peterman MA, Education.
Alexander Peterman. I would first narrow your subject down to one sport so you can be more focused. Note that this will likely be an informative essay. After you do this, an interesting hook statement may be an anecdote describing an intense moment in that chosen sport to get your audience interested. This can be made up or from your own experience with the sport. Yes No. Not Helpful 4 Helpful An effective hook statement to start your essay about this topic may be a statistic about HIV, or perhaps an anecdote about someone facing this diagnosis and trying to make positive lifestyle changes for their health.
Not Helpful 7 Helpful With something interesting! This is easier said than done of course, but a good intro starts with a quote, fact, or brief story that interests the reader.
If it interested you while reading or researching, it's a great thing to start with. Just keep it short and it will be great.
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Not Helpful 43 Helpful Skip it, write down your main points, and build the body of your essay. Once you know all the areas you want to cover, think about what links them all together, and what the main thing you're trying to convey is. Not Helpful 29 Helpful Start off with a mini thesis which states what the body paragraph is talking about.