How to write an introduction for an essay: 3 main steps

An introduction is usually one of the most difficult and important parts of an essay. It is a component, which determines whether you get audience interested or not. Except for attractiveness for the reader, the introductory paragraph must stay meaningful and fulfill its functions. We have prepared some tips for writing the successful introduction for the paper.

Step 1. Contrive the first sentence.

So to say, the first sentence is a very beginning of your beginning. It should be a hook for the reader: catch his eyes and attention, intrigue him. There are different ways how to achieve this goal:

  • Start the essay with a question. Sometimes you can even address the reader in it. For example, do you believe in destiny? Have you ever imagined yourself a millionaire?
  • Begin with a small and unknown fact: “Shakespeare wrote many more plays than the ones we know about.” This kind of information is really easy to find nowadays but still not many people know it. That is how you can catch their attention.
  • Use a surprising fact for beginning. Such as “English is the official language of the skies, and all pilots, regardless of their country of origin, identify themselves in English on international flights.
  • Start with an expressive quote. You can choose the one from the sources required or any you find proper for the topic of your essay. After giving a quotation you should interpret it and connect with the subject of writing. The reader must understand why you include the saying, question, or a particular fact and how it refers to the whole paper.
  • Nice and tolerant humor can always find its place in the introductory paragraph. However, you should be careful and better not practice this hook if you are not sure about your and your instructor’s humorous abilities.
  • Choose a definition as your first sentence. It will allow you explain the general information and move to specific points, which you will be able to reveal in the body paragraphs.

Step 2. Work on your thesis statement.

  • A thesis statement is a core of your paper. It expresses your main idea and understanding of the topic that is why you should accumulate maximum sense in it.
  • It is the last sentence of the introduction.
  • The structure of your whole paper is organized by the thesis statement as it reflects the direction of the thoughts.
  • The thesis sentence has to be specific and provide the opening for supporting body paragraphs.
  • Remember that thesis statement is a declarative sentence usually. Do not form it in a question as the reader should clearly understand your position.
  • Review and re-do your thesis if it is necessary. Writing is a dynamic process which may modify and develop your views. Thus, no wonder if you need to change this part after finishing the paper.

Step 3. Revising your introduction.

  • Make sure it gives general information about the topic and narrows to your specific issue.
  • Check if you have used transitions. The introductive paragraph must be linked with the main body of the paper. Transition words help a lot with it.
  • Give the introduction to your friend to read and ask if he was interested to the extent that he would love to see the whole paper. If he does your mission is complete: you have written a strong introduction for your essay.

Keywords: introduction, introductive paragraph, essay, paper, writing, thesis statement, steps.


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