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How to Write a Good Introduction

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❶This article gave excellent examples and advice. Stephen King has been around for some time now, and everyone, from teenagers to grandparents, know his name whether they have read his books or not.

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Bridge into the topic. After you tell the story, briefly explain why you told it and why the reader should care. You may end up introducing the main ideas of your essay during this portion of your introduction. In a single sentence, come up with a thesis that focuses the topic and tells the reader what to expect about the paper to come. A thesis statement is a single sentence that defines a specific point or idea about a broader topic that your entire paper is built around.

The connection between your thesis statement and the anecdote you used should be obvious to the reader. If the thesis statement does not fit into the introduction as it currently stands, you may need to use more supporting evidence to lead into the thesis or change the anecdote you use. Determine if a historical review could be helpful. There are many papers for which no historical context is needed, but if historical context can help clarify things to the reader, a historical review introduction can be very helpful.

These introductions are usually used for papers written about a historical time period or topic, a historical critique of a piece of literature, or a long-standing problem that people throughout the ages have tried to address. Provide factual and historical context about the the topic.

Outline or review a few key historical facts that offer the reader any essential information he or she might need in order to understand the topic of the paper. These pieces of information should not only provide context about the topic, but should also indirectly present the general topic itself.

In doing this, you will demonstrate the the reader how your topic fits into the historical account you present in your introduction. Narrow your thoughts down to a thesis statement. The information provided thus far will be fairly general, so you need to focus the end of your paragraph on a single thesis statement that you will use to define the rest of your paper.

With this type of introduction, your thesis statement should cause the reader to view the historical facts you just presented in a specific light or through a specific lens. In effect, your thesis statement should tell the reader why the facts you presented before it are important to keep in mind. Briefly summarize the literary work you are writing about. Introduce the key bibliographic facts of the literary work and summarize the main plot or purpose of the work. In the case of a story, you do not need to focus on specific details or give away the ending.

You simply need to introduce the basic, overall theme of the story and provide information about the conflict the main character faces. Draw out a general theme from the work. Most literary works have multiple themes that can be addressed, but for the same of your paper, you will need to focus on one theme that relates directly to your thesis.

Connect your summary to the theme in a naturally, sensible manner. Hint at the main sections of your essay. Lead into your thesis by briefly mentioning the main ideas of your essay, which exist to support your thesis. In a sense, you will be narrowing down your broad topic into a more focused, specific thought by slowly presenting ideas that narrow the reader's field of vision until all that reader sees about that literary work are the ideas presented in your paper.

Come out with your thesis statement. Finish the introduction with a focused, single-sentence statement about the thesis of your essay. With this type of introduction, you need to choose a thesis that makes sense within the context of your summary and supporting evidence. If the thesis still seems out of place, go back and rewrite your supporting evidence until the connection your thesis has to the summary of the literary work makes sense.

Ask the reader a question he or she can related to. Address the reader directly by posing a question that is relevant to the topic of the paper. The question should also be something that will catch the attention of most people, thereby painting the topic in terms that a reader can relate to. When choosing a question, you can ask something universal, surprising, or rhetorical.

Consider backing up your initial question with two others. The additional questions you ask should gradually narrow the topic down into something smaller and more specific. Hint at any answer and discuss how your essay will address the answer. You do not need to state the answer in clear terms, but you should use the main points of your paper to guide the reader in a specific direction. Doing this also clues the reader into the approach you intend to take on the question or questions at hand.

State your thesis in a single sentence. Your thesis statement will be the closest you get to providing a direct answer to your initial question. It should state what, specifically, you plan to write about.

You do not need to give the reader a clear, definite answer to the question you ask, but if you narrowed your topic down using the three-question method, you should consider using terms or ideas from the final question in your thesis.

Offer a relevant quotation. The quotation can be famous, insightful, or unexpected, but regardless of the content or type you choose, the quotation must have direct relevance to your topic. The quotation can be a famous saying, words from someone famous, a snippet from song lyrics, or a short poem.

Do not insert a hanging quote. In other words, the sentence with your quotation in it must contain other content aside from the quotation itself. Provide context for the quotation while bridging into the topic.

Context can who spoke or wrote the words originally, what the words are referring to, the time period the quotation came from, or how the quotation addresses your topic.

Note that unless the quotation is anonymous, you must always state who is responsible for it. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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.

Not Helpful 1 Helpful 6. 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 1 Helpful 5.

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. Not Helpful 38 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 27 Helpful Start off with a mini thesis which states what the body paragraph is talking about. Not Helpful 28 Helpful Start with the basics -- what do you think about the topic? What argument can you make about it?

Once you have an argument, start jotting down the evidence for the argument. This evidence will make up your paragraphs later on. If it's easiest, just skip the introduction now and come back once you're done -- you'll have all the ideas already drawn out. My assignment is to summarize an already-written essay: To summarize, you really need to condense what's there and put everything into your own words -- this will include the introduction. It's fine to use the content of the introduction, but make sure not to copy the writing word-for-word.

Not Helpful 16 Helpful Start with something like "Heart disease is a serious condition that takes the lives of number Americans every year. Maybe something about how we can encourage more people to go to the doctor to get a diagnosis before it becomes more serious. Not Helpful 17 Helpful Generally, one starts an essay with an interesting quote, fact, or story to make the reader want to continue reading.

Did you know that every year? Then you can begin to talk about background information and a thesis. A thesis usually lays out a brief summary of the points you want to make and includes your position on the topic. Dogs are ideal pets because of their loyalty to humans and their great trainability. Not Helpful 14 Helpful How can I write the introduction for an essay on the effects of peer pressure among teenagers?

Talk about the problem first, this way the reader can understand why you are talking about effects and so the reader gets a good background on the subject. Not Helpful 3 Helpful Answer this question Flag as How do I write an introduction for an essay on my perception of and experiences with writing? How do I write and introduction for this research topic teachers strategies in connection to student learning?

What is the precisely and concisely introduction, thesis, body and conclusion part of an integrity, transparent and visionary leader? Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered.

Already answered Not a question Bad question Other. Quick Summary Start your introduction with a relevant story, fact, or quote that will engage readers. Did this summary help you? Tips Have friends or family members read your essay and provide you with feedback. If you're writing for a class, you might want to exchange essays with another classmate and give each other feedback on your work. If you are answering or responding to an assigned question, make sure you've interpreted the question correctly.

The quality of your writing is irrelevant if your essay doesn't answer the question. Essay Introductions In other languages: Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 3,, times.

Did this article help you? Cookies make wikiHow better. By continuing to use our site, you agree to our cookie policy. Mhiz Vick Glorie Apr 7. TV Teighan Vickrey Mar I wanted to be promoted to Cadet 1st Lieutenant. I am horrible at writing essays. This site helped me a lot.


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The introductory paragraph of any paper, long or short, should start with a sentence that piques the interest of your readers.

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Since the dawn of man, writing has been used to communicate ideas. In academic settings, ideas are typically communicated using formal types of writing such as essays. Most academic essays contain an introductory paragraph, which includes a thesis.

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The opening paragraph of your paper will provide your readers with their initial impressions of your argument, your writing style, and the overall quality of your work. A vague, disorganized, error-filled, off-the-wall, or boring introduction will probably create a negative impression. Writing an introductory paragraph is easier than it may seem. The key to a successful intro is knowing the components that go into it. Much like a watch has components that, when put together, make it work properly, an introductory paragraph must have its own individual components for it to work.

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An introduction paragraph is a paragraph used to introduct something. For example, if you are writing a personal letter to your teacher, you would introduce yourself in the introduction paragraph. An introductory paragraph is the most important part of an essay or piece of writing because it needs to make its audience want to keep reading. Examples of Great Introductory Paragraphs .