The introduction is the first thing anyone will read from your essay, apart from the title. To understand how to make it effective, you must be sure to have a firm understanding of just what the point is of an essay. In short, you will be exploring a certain problem or question; identifying the relevant issues and analysing information, thoughts and data until you reach a conclusion. With this fundamental principle in mind, the importance of an effective introduction cannot be understated. Start as you mean to go on; stimulate the curiosity of the reader to ensure they have the interest to read on.
Here are five recommendations to help improve your writing skills, and formulate a successful introduction:
1. Make it informative
The opening 1-2 paragraphs need to offer a thorough explanation of the issue/question you are going to explore, and the way you are going to explore it. Essentially, you want to ensure that your reader goes into the rest of your essay with a good understanding of the fundamental questions upon which it is based. That way, they will have a consistent principle on which to base their interpretation of all your hard work.
2. Run through some of the research tools/methods you used
You don’t want to go into too much detail on this front, but as you outline the question or problem that your essay is going to explore, you’ll want to highlight some of the methods you will be using to do it. Don’t be overly specific when doing this; use your writing skills to tell your reader that you will be citing various studies or pre-existing essays for your work, rather than naming any academics or particular works that you have included. Introduce your methodology, but be broad in the introduction.
3. Note the expected result or conclusion of your work
Though it is just the introduction, it is important that your reader has some idea what to expect as they go over your essay. If you offer a brief explanation of what you are trying to prove as you go over sections of analysis and cite various works and studies, then your reader will have some context for all the information they’re being offered. You will repeat this intention at the end of your work, but it’s vital that you introduce your findings before going into the nitty-gritty of how you made them.
4. Make it as engaging as possible
If you want your reader to have a positive experience reading your essay, it’s important that you offer a bit of intrigue and writing panache from the outset. Of course, you need academic writing skills when covering academic material, but the passion and excitement you have towards the subject matter must be put across in your writing.
5. Be concise
You may have heard the phrase “brevity is the soul of wit”. When formulating your perfect introduction, this is a principle you need to uphold as powerfully as possible. Include all of the previous four points in as short a passage as possible – maybe two to three paragraphs. Avoid filler and waffle; stay on point, put across the pertinent information and create intrigue for the subject matter with your writing skills, using as few words as possible.