Significance of an Essay Introduction

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Updated Oct 21, 2021
Significance of an Essay Introduction

An introduction is the first paragraph your audience will read. It should be introducing the reader to the central idea. This will be an argument that the rest of your essay will be based on. It is also a perfect opportunity to grasp the reader's attention. If you can do this successfully, chances are the reader will stay glued till the very end of your academic essay. You have to clearly state the thesis statement to understand the audience about your overall argument. It gets them a taste of what is yet to come and also sets the tone for it.

Structure of the Essay Introduction

Just like a complete persuasive essay that follows a structure, an introduction should be treated in isolation. Consider it an individual textual entity and make sure it follows a specific format. The first part of your introduction compromises an effective hook. This should take up to three to five sentences. Ensure that you are not stating a fact that will be repeated in the essay later on. The second part should contain the gist of the outline to be followed. Finally, the essay introduction is concluded with a thesis statement. It should not exceed two to three sentences. Let's look at each of these sections individually in detail.

Essay introduction elements

A Catchy Hook

Essay writing has to be informative, but if your writing is monotonous, not everybody will be willing to read it all the way through. An excellent way to spruce things up is by introducing a hook in the opening line. It can be an instrument that motivates the audience to read more. This attention grabber can take the form of:

  • An indirect reference of the central idea;
  • A relevant quotation, followed by an elaborate link;
  • An anecdote or an exciting incident;
  • A dash of humor;
  • An engaging question.

Incorrect Attention Grabber

Destroying rainforests for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal. (E.O Wilson)

Correct Attention Grabber

We learned that economic growth and environmental protection should go hand in hand.

- Christopher john

Body Paragraph of Your Introductory Paragraph

The body of your essay should not be more than eight to ten sentences. Here, you will be writing sentences relevant to the main headings and subheadings of the entire essay's outline. Do not disturb the sequence while writing it. These statements have to follow a logical flow. Read them to check for coherence. Here, include the background information you will be writing your whole essay on.

Give Background Information

Next, give your reader the context they need to understand your topic and argument. Depending on the subject of your essay, this might include:

  • Historical, geographical, or social context;
  • A summary of relevant theories or research about the topic;
  • Definitions of key terms.

A Well-Constructed Thesis Statement

A thesis statement of your essay is an integral part of the introduction. You have to include what your stance is about the argument you are presenting. It has to be concise and on point. If you are working on an expository essay, the thesis statement will be your essay's last sentence, followed by a hook and the gist. In an argumentative essay, the first part consists of the hook, next comes to the thesis statement, and finally, the outline's main points. In an abstract, the thesis statement should go first, then the hook, and finally, the outline's gist.

How to Construct a Thesis Statement?

Let's have an example that helps:

New war fronts lie in Economic Zones

The world dynamics and the world order are continually shifting with increased economic competition, technological advancement, globalization of trade and commerce. The influx of change and increased competition has pushed the world powers to achieve sustainable economies. In current times and the way forward, the sustainability of management and the new world order lies in socio-economic development.

What?

The world dynamics and the world order are continuously shifting with increased economic competition, technological advancement, globalization of trade and commerce.

Why?

The influx of change and increased competition has pushed the world powers to achieve sustainable economies.

How?

In current times and the way forward, the sustainability of power and the new world order lies in socio-economic development.

A Few Examples of a Thesis Statement

Below are two more examples of incorrectly written thesis statements:

An issue like deforestation affects our economy, lifestyle and the reason for many endangered species. Deforestation can lead to multi sceneries of destruction and natural causes. Deforestation is more than just cutting down a tree, leading to animals' extinction, global warming, increasing carbon emission going into our temperature, and causing severe damages.

Deforestation has a significant effect on Pakistan's economy due to several causes. However, these can be mitigated by taking several steps from implementing policies to moving towards sustainable businesses.

Here are two well-constructed thesis statements to take inspiration from:

The rapidly increasing deforestation in Pakistan is harmful to the environment and has adverse effects on the already-strained economy of the country. To cater to this situation, the government should take measures along with the cooperation of civilians.

The rapidly progressing field of technology has an impact on every wake of life. While it has significantly made our life easier, information technology's adverse effects cannot be ignored. However, by regulating its usage and ensuring secure cyberspace, the expanding technology can be transformed into a pure blessing for humankind.

Impact of the Introduction on the Rest of Your Essay

The introduction also sets the foundation for the rest of your essay. How does it impact the body and conclusion? Read below to find out.

The Main Body of Your Essay

The thesis statement sets the stage for the main arguments of the body of the essay. You will be providing a new topic statement in each of the three paragraphs to support your stance. Once you have written a section of your main body, go back to your introduction to ensure it is coherent. Sometimes, the main arguments alter the thesis statement. Thus, make sure you update it after you are done.

Conclusion

This is the paragraph where you will be tieing together all the loose ends. Reinstate the purpose of your work and link it back to the introduction. Mention all the main points you have made in the introduction paragraph and mention how they address the thesis statement's thesis statement.

Sometimes, students get sidetracked while writing the essay. When they reach the very end, the focus has changed from what it was at the beginning. You might feel the urge to provide recommendations. In other cases, you will find yourself rambling on just to hit that word limit. Try to be focused. Go back and compare the two sections and see if they are coherent and logical. Consider an essay as a present and introduction and the conclusion as to its packaging. No matter how good the gift is, the packaging indeed makes a lasting impression on the receiving end.

Checking And Revising

Never settle on the first draft you have written. Not even professionals can ace an essay on the first attempt. An effective piece of advice is to read and reread your work until it reaches perfection. Sometimes, you are not the best judge of your work. This is because you have a limited view, and eliminating personal bias is hardly possible. You can also use a fresh set of eyes to get new ideas.

Also, run your content through Grammarly and a plagiarism tool to remove any possible errors. You are recommended to approve your instructor's introduction before moving on to your essay's main body. Writing a thesis statement requires technicality and skills. If it is not one of your strong suits, it can be a mistake to write an entire essay and then get it checked. The format and requirements are also two elements to check your work for. Ensure the essay's introduction's structure follows the right structure depending on the type of your essay.

Don'ts of Writing an Introduction:

  • Refrain from including figures, examples, or statistics in this part;
  • There is no need to write lengthy definitions of the concepts and critical terms introduced in the introduction;
  • Do not mention the main arguments here. You do not want repetition.

Checklist for Writing a Perfect Introduction

  • Is my first sentence relevant and engaging?
  • Have I provided enough background information to cover the basics?
  • Have I defined all the key terms?
  • Does my thesis statement clearly convey the central argument or point?
  • Is my thesis statement concise?
  • Is everything in the main body cohesive with the thesis statement?

Example of a Good Essay Introduction

Effect of Deforestation on Pakistan's Economy

Christopher john Dodd (former United States Senator) said, "We learned that economic growth and environmental protection should go hand in hand." Environment plays a crucial role in economic well-being; as stressed by the former US Senator, both should go hand in hand. Pakistan should focus on mitigating the environment-related issues, "deforestation" specifically, as it has adverse effects on the economy. There are some significant causes of deforestation. Some of them include urbanization, Industrialization, lack of law enforcement, and lack of public awareness.

Due to these, deforestation is increasing rapidly, such as Tourism, sports, and pharmaceutical industry. It also has an impact on Agriculture, wild-life, and biodiversity. In the coming years, the government's priorities will shift towards acquiring wood, and a large chunk of the budget will be allocated to it. This will further affect the already suffering economy of Pakistan. However, this situation can be rectified, and the effects can be mitigated by implementing new forest management policies. The rapidly increasing deforestation in Pakistan is harmful to the environment, but it also has an adverse impact on its already-strained economy. To cater to this situation, the government should take measures along with the cooperation of civilians.

With the guidelines and examples stated above, you are well-equipped for crafting your own essay introduction. Stay patient, keep reading quality work for inspiration, and practice continuously. There is nothing that can stop you from becoming the writer you have always wanted.

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