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Research Paper Introduction Is Probably the Key Element of Your Project

Knowing how to write a great introduction is a huge part in the process of writing a great research paper. It can be frustrating and a little overwhelming at first, but with the right planning it won’t be. If you have conducted your research and have drafted your outline, then most of your research paper introduction is already written.

Here are a few tips to help you start writing the introduction to your research paper:

Start broad then narrow your focus: Generally, you want to start your introduction with a broad view of your topic. Think of your introduction as an inverted pyramid which becomes more focused to your specific topic sentence after sentence until you reach your thesis, which in theory will be your most focused and precise sentence in your entire research paper.

Introduce your topic: This is your opportunity to grab your reader’s attention and introduce your topic. Start with an interesting factoid, anecdote or quote from your research. You never want to start weak with a statement that begins, “This paper is about” or “I will show you”. Both of these are red flags that will give your reader the impression that the paper isn’t going to be very creative and thus uninteresting.

Inform the reader about your rationale: In the middle sentences you want to give the reader a brief roadmap of the main topics that you will be discussing, as well as provide them with rationale for your thinking and why it is you conducted this research to begin with. You aren’t providing a complete defense, but you want the reader to know the work that you have done is important. Show them why this is.

Structure your introduction around your outline: Using your outline as a guide to structure is a great idea because it highlights all of the major points you plan on making in your paper. Be sure the most important ones are there. It also will show the order in which your paper will develop. Use this order to give the reader an idea of how you will present the logic of your paper.

Write your thesis statement: All of your prior sentences have been leading up to your thesis. Your thesis expresses the topic of your paper and where you stand on a specific issue or question. Your thesis should be concise and focused, and you should leave no room for doubt of what it you are making a case for.

Following the above tips should give you more than enough to write a great introduction. Since your introduction will set tone for the rest of the paper, it’s important that you proofread and revise this paragraph at least once. Remember that a great introduction will compel your reader to want to read more, thus giving your reader a great first impression of your writing ability.

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