How to Write an Introduction for a Research Paper

How to Write an Introduction for a Research Paper

Knowing how to write an introduction for a research paper is important if you want to master the art of writing good academic papers. In fact, it is the best way through which you can be able to deliver outstanding research papers, essays, dissertations among others. Herein, you will be able to get professional advice on how to write an introduction for a research paper with so much ease.

Mastering the art of how to write an introduction for a research paper requires you to first understand what an introduction is. A research paper introduction refers to the first statements or section of the paper. It is the part whereby you should give a short background information about the subject of the paper.

Apart from background information, you should also clearly state your thesis in the introduction of the paper. This implies the introduction should be written in a way that shows the audience what to expect in the other parts of the research paper. The opening statements of your paper should vividly tell the readers about its contents and also the format in which the ideas will be presented.

In simple terms, an introduction for a research paper should begin with statements supporting your topic and end with a hypothesis. In this way, your readers will be given a theoretical context of the paper, thereby understanding the way in which points are argued out in the body and conclusion.

Guidelines on how to write an introduction for a research paper

Writing a research paper introduction is not quite different from those of other academic papers. However, there are certain things that you have to put into consideration when planning how to write an introduction for a research paper in order to deliver the best piece.

The following tips will help you in writing a unique and outstanding research paper introduction.

Understand the question of the paper

In most occasions, students often rush into writing assignments and term papers without taking time to determine what is required and this only leads to mistakes that you can easily avoid.

Carefully read the question and make sure that you know what is required and how the topic should be handled. In case there is something that you do not understand properly, it is advisable that you inquire from your instructor or tutor. Doing this will make it much easier for you to plan how to go about crafting the introduction.

Conduct thorough research

Although some subjects may seem too easy and simple, it is recommended that you do a little research in order to get adequate information. While doing the research, ensure that you properly read and digest the materials for research.

Research can be done from friends, libraries and online. It is also important that you collect the sources from which you have gathered the information to use. Take notes as you research for quick reference during the writing process.

Formulate a thesis for the paper

A thesis statement or hypothesis is the basis of the research and should clearly show your readers the key idea that you intend to address in the paper. It has to be well thought out and analyzed in a sentence or two so readers can know what to anticipate in the paper.

Considering that the introduction should be brief, the thesis should also be short and clear, focusing on the main context of the research.

Steps on how to write an introduction for a research paper

There are procedures on how to write an introduction for a research paper that should always be followed. By writing your introduction based on the steps outlined below, you will be able to clearly present all the elements of a good one in the right format.

Draft an outline

An outline acts as the framework which outlines the contents of the introduction. You can decide to write one specifically for the introduction or include other parts of the paper in the same one. However, the outline must show the details or information that you want to present in the introduction, including the thesis statement.

Open the paper with a few statements highlighting the topic

In the first sentences of the introduction, you should give the readers some important information or key facts about the subject of research. Provide a general idea of the issue that will be discussed in the paper.

If the research paper is a scientific one, you can start by discussing the significance of the study. It is also important to give a rationale behind the model of the experiment and how it achieved your objectives.

Research papers that are based on humanities should be written according to the ‘inverted pyramid’ approach. This technique requires you to begin the introduction with a general background information on the topic, then narrowing down towards the thesis statement.

Consider other ‘starters’ for the paper

There are other approaches that you can also take in crafting the opening statements of a research paper. You can choose to use the ones outlined in the above step or consider anecdotes, quotes, and news stories among others.

You can also introduce the paper by comparing and contrasting two events, ideas or people. However, the best choice will be based on the subject of study and also your objectives.

Put the thesis in the final part of the introduction

The hypothesis should move away from the general information given in the first sentences and focus on the specific issue that your study is based on. Although you may use a couple of sentences to illustrate your thesis, it has to clearly show your objective in writing the research paper.

When writing the hypothesis, avoid using vague words or terms that your audience will have a difficulty in understanding. The main point is to make your readers know the particular angle that will be pursued in the research paper in brief.

Give a recap of the main points and how they will be handled

The purpose of the introduction is to act as a window through which your readers can easily see the discussion contained in the research paper. After stating the thesis, it is advisable that you continue to give a brief highlight on the main points that will be addressed in the paper, and also how each will be handled to conclusion.

However, do not give too much information that will end up disclosing all the details meant for the other sections of the paper. Also make sure that the introduction is smoothly linked to the body paragraphs in a way that readers can follow.

A good introduction should be just one paragraph, however, there are cases that you may need more than one depending on the topic of the research.

Go through the written work

It is advisable that you always take some time to re-evaluate your writing in order to be sure that the introduction meets the requirements of the paper. Carefully read through the introductory paragraph (s) and make the necessary corrections before proceeding to the other sections.

Examples of research paper introductions

Reading sample research paper introductions is also another way through which you can easily find out how to write an introduction for a research paper. The following are some examples to assist you in writing a good introduction.

Example 1

Research Paper on Women Disadvantaged in Leadership

‘’Today, women have been increasingly hailed for excellent leadership skills. Women at times manifest better leadership skills than their male counterparts, especially those linked to cases of effective leadership performance. However, most people in the modern world prefer male bosses to female ones. His has made it difficult for women to acquire leadership roles…’’

Read the rest of this sample introduction for a research paper on this link.

Example 2

Strategic Management and Strategic Competitiveness

‘’The world’s economy is rapidly growing and it is the objective of every public corporation to deliver products of the highest quality with regards to services and goods to international and domestic markets. There is urgent need for production of highly competitive products that can give consumers the best satisfaction. This has contributed to increased competition among private and public corporations for international and local markets…’’

Click here to read the entire introduction.

Example 3

Sample Research Paper on Iraq-Iran War          

‘’The attack unleashed on Iran by Iraq marked the start of the Iraq-Iran war. This assault introduced concurrent attacks through land and space into the kingdom of Iran on 22nd September 1980. Consequently, there was a history of long standing boundary disagreements as well as Shia revolution’s qualms among the Shia majority, which has suffered repression for a long time in Iraq.

The Iraq-Iran war lasted for almost three years, making it one of the most exorbitant battles fought in that century. More than a million people died during the war and another million injured in both countries…’’

Read the whole sample research paper introduction here.

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