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How to Write an Introduction for an Essay

“If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster” (c.) Isaac Asimov















Which main features should an introductory paragraph have? Every academic paper has its introduction. This is a very important part of a text playing several roles simultaneously. The first function of a good introduction is to make an audience pay attention to the text.

The second mission of this component is to encourage an audience to read a text to the end. The third purpose of it is to explain to the reader what this text is about and provide them with a roadmap. But the most important task of this part is to formulate a thesis statement. This is the most significant component of the introduction.

From the very beginning, you should grab a reader’s attention. The task of them is to intrigue and interest readers, but you can’t gain this purpose if you don’t know your audience.

If you are writing a paper for your instructor, you should show them that you are familiar with the subject and know answers to the questions. For instance, if you are writing an essay about the issue of the obesity for women’s studying class, you can identify the audience as women suffering from the obesity within the age range most impacted by the issue.


Which elements should a writer use to interest the audience?

You can use the element of surprise at the beginning. Shocking statistic allows you to hook a reader from the very beginning. Having gotten to know something interesting, the audience will want to read the text to the end.

– To use this literary method, the statistics should be sufficiently surprising. If you aren’t sure that this is really interesting for people, you can test this fact by telling your friends about it. When you know which reaction this fact causes in your friends, you will get to know how it impacts other readers.

– From the very beginning, you should use something catching reader’s attention, but not something used as evidence to support your thesis statement. Facts and statistics that show why the topic you cover in the essay is so important provide an audience with hooks.


Involve a Reader Emotionally

It doesn’t matter you are writing about a serious social problem or politics, you should use a hook involving a reader emotionally. You can gain this target telling a reader a similar story from your own life relevant to your issue raised in the essay. This will affect an audience and make them take part in solving this problem. For instance, if you are writing about the issue of the alcoholism, you can tell a story how one of your friends or relatives was treated for alcoholism and how much this influenced you.


Use a relevant example or anecdote

When you were finding interesting materials for your essay, you might have met an interesting anecdote relating this issue or story you are telling. This one can be an excellent hook entertaining your audience. For instance, if you are writing an essay about a public person, you can enter an anecdote relating back to your thesis statement.

When it comes to less formal papers or personal essays, humor is a perfect literary method you can use to catch your audience’s attention.


Ask a provoking question

To write your introductory paragraph, you can use a relevant rhetorical question making your readers think actively about the issue. Some writers find this method very effective. For instance, Have you ever heard about the most significant landmark of Japan?

If the prompt of the essay was a question, you should use your own question to intrigue an audience.


Avoid cliches and generalizations

Using cliches or generalizations in your paper, you become a lazy and unoriginal writer making readers be bored. An audience doesn’t read the same things that they have read earlier. Broad generalizations can be false and push off a reader from the very beginning.


Create a context of your topic

The next component of the good introduction is a context. You should relate your hook to your topic and issue you are going to develop in your essay. You can start with a broader, more general scope clearing hook’s relevance.

For this, you should just use a transit phrase or sentence to connect the hook with other components of the essay. You can apply such words as “however” or “similarly” to move from the anecdote to the topic. For instance, if you tell a story about your friend or relative, but the essay is about a general problem, you can use such a literary method: “Unfortunately, Alex isn’t alone. About 88 000 millions people die from alcohol-related causes annually.”


Write a thesis statement

The most important component of the introduction is a thesis statement. Usually, it consists of one or two sentences and presents your unique point you are going to argue and support in your body paragraphs.