What Should an Introduction Include in an Essay
A question that most students ask when struggling to start writing an essay is “what should an introduction include in an essay?” The introduction is the first paragraph of an essay- classroom.synonym.com. A good introduction should serve the purpose that is suggested by its name, which is to introduce the essay. Introductions are usually part of even short essays. They not only introduce the topic of the essay but also guide readers by telling them what to expect in the rest of the essay. Generally, a good essay introduction should include certain elements or components. However, these components vary depending on the type of the essay that you are writing.
What should an introduction include in an essay?
The introduction of an essay is very important. It identifies the topic of the essay while providing the context and indicating the focus of the essay. Additionally, the introduction engages the interest of readers- writing.utoronto.ca. Writing such an introduction is challenging especially if you do not know what exactly you should include in it.
However, when you know what to include in the introduction of your essay, introducing your topic, explaining the context and the structure of your essay as well as responding to the writing prompt or giving your essay a focus becomes easy- owll.massey.ac.nz.
What to include in the introduction of your essay
Among the major components of a good essay introduction include:
- A hook
This is a sentence, usually the first sentence which draws the attention of the readers. This sentence should be interesting and it should keep readers interested in reading the essay. You can write a hook by posing a question, quoting statistics that are related to your topic or stating a relevant quotation. When for instance readers recognize a quotation that you include in the hook, they will be interested in reading the other parts of your essay.
- Connecting information
Once you have written your hook, include connecting information. This should create a bridge between the first sentence or the hook and the other sentences of the introduction all the way to the thesis statement which should be the second-last or last sentence in the introduction. The number of connecting sentences that you include in the introduction depends on the length of your essay. Connecting sentences can provide background information that relates to the topic of your essay.
- Thesis statement
Thesis statement should be the last or second last sentence of the introduction and it should be stated concisely and clearly to provide guidelines on what will be covered by the essay. Remember that the thesis statement that you include in your introduction should be determined by the kind of argument that you will present in the body of your essay.
Perhaps, this is a components that most guides on what should an introduction include in an essay leave out. This might be due to the fact that including methodology in the introduction of an essay is not a must. This is not the case for other components such as a thesis statement or a hook. Methodology sentences tell readers what the main sections of an essay will cover, reasons for adopting a particular order, structural principle or how conclusions will be drawn from the available information- writing.ucsb.edu.
Remember that not every essay introduction will have all these elements. However, most essays have them either implicitly or explicitly. Methodology is longer in long and scholarly essays and it can be in a separate paragraph.
Sample introductions that indicate what should an introduction include
“Have you ever been a victim of stereotyping? If yes, know that you are not alone. There seems to be an innate compulsion for categorizing people in different groups and applying limited and rigid descriptions to those groups. As such, there are among others stereotypical races and nationalities, sexual orientations, stereotypical classes and stereotypical sexes. Mass media is one of the places where stereotyping is thriving especially in the popular television which includes situation comedy and tabloid press. Some people claim that stereotyping others is harmless while others point out the possible dangers of media-based stereotypes. Sociological evidence of mass media stereotyping will be examined in this essay after which the reasons for this stereotyping will be analyzed. In the final part of this essay, the attitudes of the society and how they are shaped by this stereotyping or portrayal will be examined.”
This is a great essay introduction sample that you should analyze to see how the elements highlighted above have been included. This introduction starts with a hook sentence which is in form of a question, “Have you ever been a victim of stereotyping?” It then moves on to the connecting information in the sentences that follows. The sample also has a clear thesis statement, “Sociological evidence of mass media stereotyping will be examined in this essay after which the reasons for this stereotyping will be analyzed.” Additionally, the introduction provides the methodology of the essay by stating how the essay will unfold in the last and second last sentence which in part is the thesis statement.
“Money cannot buy me love.” Whether this statement is true or false, most people are unsure about the source of their happiness. While there are those who live simple lives with simple pleasures while friends and families surround them, others are always looking for the latest fancy gadgets which are aimed at making their lives more enjoyable and easier. While there are those who are always looking for the next luxury or the best thing that they can buy with money, studies have shown that money has actually little or no effect on how happy a person is beyond a certain threshold. This essay will explore the threshold beyond which money stops being a significant happiness indicator. The conclusion of this essay will be drawn from what people do and how they use money to get happiness as well as how at some point this ceases to be the case after reaching this threshold.”
This is also a great sample introduction of an essay because it has the components of a great essay introduction. It starts with a great hook, the Beatles quotation. This is popular among most people and it therefore captures the interest of the readers because they want to know what will follow in the essay. It is followed by connecting information in the sentences that follow. This example of an essay introduction also has a clear thesis statement, “This essay will explore the threshold beyond which money stops being a significant happiness indicator.” It also provides the methodology by stating how the conclusion of the essay will be reached at. It is therefore a good example for you if you are unsure of what should an introduction include in an essay and how.
“Paul Rat Smith argues that there is a tenuous but important relationship between rats and pumpkins. This kinship has always fascinated me. However, this relationship has been subjected to several studies. In studying this relationship, Rat Smith coined the name “pumpkinology” to describe it and it has been used since the beginning of the 90s. Rat Smith is known for spending three years in the wild among rats and pumpkins. Although this topic has attracted little interest, several ancient books noted this relationship and the Romans seem to understand this relationship properly. To dismiss his results however, critics cite questionable methodology and poor science with some calling pumpkinology rubbish or stupid. Nevertheless, there seems to be a correlation between rats’ population and pumpkin patches that will be analyzed in this essay. Rat Smith has documented several colonies of pumpkin and rats in North American leading to his conclusion that rats and pumpkins are indeed the best friends naturally.”
This is also a great introduction sample because it has all the components of a good introduction. It starts with a good attention grabbing sentence that most readers will find fascinating. This is followed by the connecting information in form of background information. It also has a clear thesis statement that tells readers what will be analyzed in the essay. The methodology is provided by stating that the essay will be developed by analyzing pumpkin patches and rat colonies as documented by Rat Smith.
If you are unsure about what should an introduction include in an essay, use these samples as your writing guide. Writing a good introduction of an essay becomes easy when you have such sample introductions.
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