Types of Essay Introductions
Updated: Apr 27
Today, we're going to learn about different types of essay introductions. I'm going to provide you with examples and I will show you how to do it, and we are going to talk about the best type of introduction for a given essay.
The first type of introduction I want to talk about is the traditional approach. For this, we are going to use 3 parts. We're going to have a hook, a transition (sometimes called a bridge), and a thesis statement.
We want to start with something interesting related to our topic. Then, we have a smooth transition or bridge to the thesis statement, and we state our case or our main idea clearly and specifically.
The Funnel introduction starts with a broad opening and then becomes more specific. The most specific part is the thesis statement.
Let's look at this example below. You can see that we start off broad with the idea that diet and exercise are two areas that we can control when it comes to our health. Then we get more specific in the thesis statement.
The Overview Introduction provides a survey often involving research about a topic. For that reason, they are commonly used in research essays. At the university level, you might have something more in-depth like a literature review.
In the example below, note that before we get to the thesis statement, we are showing the trend within the research for this particular topic.
Personal anecdotes could not be more different than an Overview. Whereas Overviews are academic, personal anecdotes are best suited to personal essays where you are communicating your own experience. This is often used for college application essays because a university or college wants to know about you, they want to know about your experience, and who you are.
Let's take a look at the example below. As you can see, anecdotes draw on rich imagery to engage the reader's senses.
The final introduction type that we're looking at today is the contrast introduction. Here we might begin with an objection to our argument. Then we use a transition word like 'however', and then we shift to our thesis statement, which states the opposite.
Here is an example:
We begin the paragraph above with the idea that the particular malaria eradication program that was used in the United States was effective. Then we use our connection word "however" to shift to a perspective about this that says that this is not something that can be generalized or may not work in some regions.
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