How to Write an Introduction 

The introduction is one of the most important parts of an essay, article, or research paper. It comes at the beginning and provides readers with their first impression of the writing. An effective introduction should grab the reader’s attention, provide background information about the topic, present the scope and organization of the writing, and establish the purpose or thesis statement.

This guide discloses trade secrets for crafting standout introductory paragraphs. Let’s start unlocking top grades and greater readership response through strategic openings!

What is an Introduction?

An introduction serves as your reader’s first impression of your essay or research paper. These critical opening paragraphs set the tone and entice others to keep reading. An introduction contextualizes the topic, states a position via a thesis statement, and ensures audiences have sufficient background knowledge before hitting the heavy facts.

Strong introductions establish a paper’s organization, significance, and author’s approach in prepping readers for smooth comprehension from start to finish!

Elements of an Effective Introduction

While top-scoring introductions do not need to be long or elaborate, several key ingredients enable them to shine:

How to Write a Hook

Engaging first sentences called “hooks” grab your audience’s attention immediately. Hooks might pose an intriguing question, share a motivational quote, drop a shocking statistic, or detail a compelling patient story that spotlights issues addressed later. There are creative tactics to hook readers fast for maximum willingness to continue!

How to Add Background Information

Provide a brief yet targeted background to orient readers on contexts without assuming prior subject familiarity. Define key terms, set the time/place the essay focuses on, and clarify related issues currently surrounding your specific discussion topic area. It’s wise not to launch straight into heavy-hitter details but instead pave the required knowledge foundations.

How to Write a Thesis Statement

A paper’s thesis statement concisely conveys the author’s central point or position on the topic. Think of it as your opportunity to announce exactly what claim the forthcoming evidence supports! Thesis statements shine brightly by stating an essay’s objective and foreshadowing major points covered later.

Theses guide readers without fully revealing intricacies just yet. More specifics come through emerging body paragraph topic sentences that systematically back the core thesis statement.

How to Write an Introduction Paragraph in 6 Steps

Even celebrated authors can find crafting killer opening lines challenging. Here are some steps for writing a good introductory paragraph:

Pick the Tone of Your Paper

The tone and formality of your introduction should match the overall style of your research paper or essay. Consider who your target audience is and what writing style would appeal to them. For example, a reflective paper may take an informal and conversational tone, while a research paper should use formal, academic language.

Write a Thesis Statement

The thesis statement is the most important part of your introduction. In one or two sentences, state your central argument or the purpose of your paper. Get right to the point—there’s no need for a vague or flowery thesis statement. Use clear, direct language to indicate what claim your evidence supports.

Give Background Information 

After the thesis statement, provide a brief background context so readers understand why you are focusing on this topic and its significance to nursing practice. Define key terms that may be unfamiliar. Provide relevant details on the scope of the issue in nursing currently. Supply readers with the background required to comprehend discussed concepts without assuming too much prior knowledge.

Write the Hook

Every great paper starts with an equally great hook that draws readers in. Use rhetorical questions, shocking statistics, emotional patient stories, or inspiring quotes to grab attention upfront. Align hooks conceptually with thesis statement angles. Strive for intriguing specificity over vague grandiosity when structuring opening hook lines.

Write a Draft 

With the structure in mind, draft your full introduction without fixating on perfection just yet. Allow ideas to spill out raw initially before revising. If you get stuck on phrasing a section, skip ahead to finish an initial draft you can refine later. Creating introductions is an iterative process, so respect it’s evolving, non-linear creative arc.


After completing your paper, scrutinize whether introductions accurately foreshadow content or require adjusting. Revise hook relevance, background details volume, and thesis statements clarity based on the actual direction of full paper arguments that unfolded. This allows introductions to hold the right balance of revealed and concealed specifics best priming readers’ comprehension.

Examples of Good Introductory Paragraphs

Still unsure what distinguishes A+ caliber paper openings? Peek at these expertly crafted samples showcasing various hook tactics and impactful elements covered:

Example 1: Hook Using a Question

“What good is swigging cough syrup if fundamental well-being aspects like wholesome nutrition, restorative sleep, and balanced stress levels remain unaddressed?” This introductory question from a nursing management essay on holistic care models subtly criticizes medicine’s limitations in fully promoting well-being absent wider lifestyle considerations. It lays the foundations for arguing integrative care’s comprehensive advantages later.

Example 2: Hook Using a Quote

“A nurse’s smile is the best way to gain your patient’s confidence.” This sentiment expressed by acclaimed nursing leader Mable Mixner saw the truth when…(anecdote elaborating) The quote grabs through a respected figure’s wisdom before transitioning into a real scenario demonstrating related challenges nurses aim to overcome.

Example 3: Introduction With Topic Sentences

This theory introduction distinctly previews an upcoming content structure based on key influences covered in greater detail within paragraph topics later: “Nursing practice fundamentals traces back core foundations to several pivotal contributors. Florence Nightingale pioneered emphasizing sanitation and environment on outcomes while Jean Watson reformed perceptions of human caring factors. Meaningful nursing relationships also stem back to seminal researcher Hildegard Peplau’s interventions bridging communication gaps.”

Example 4: Thesis Statement With Specific Details

“Standard hospital visiting hour policies prohibiting children under 12 adversely impact patient recovery and satisfaction according to recent immersive research on family-centered care effects.” This thesis packs a punch by specifying exactly what position the evidence supports.

Example 5: Thesis Statement With a Clear Argument

“Nursing staffing retention initiatives prioritizing eight key contributors hold the greatest efficacy for creating optimally supportive workplaces revealed through 5,200 surveyed healthcare professionals across 14 states.” Talk about clearly mapping out an essay roadmap from the get-go!

Introduction for a Research Paper Example

“How many healthcare breakthroughs never transpired simply because nurses lacked conducive environments to incubate their insights? Accidents advancing treatment protocols, medication administration refinements preventing errors, and patient-centered care customizations improving experiences all require nurturing conditions allowing nurses to thoroughly unleash their potential.

My 12-month University of North Carolina mixed-methods study spanning 1,154 multi-unit nurses examines specific workplace culture components with the greatest correlations to elevated nursing research participation. Early findings revealed striking patterns surrounding eight key environmental factors strongly predictive of advanced inquiry activity embracing problem-focused curiosity.”

This introduction instantly engages by spotlighting an intriguing open question readers likely share. It establishes the study’s purpose of investigating influences on nursing research engagement amid the underwhelming status quo.

Both quantitative and qualitative evidence obtained gets cited from a respectable university, setting foundations for projected reliability. The final sentence intrigues through early findings while staying vague to engage the reader!

Writing Perfect Essay Introductions: FAQs

How do you write a good introduction?

Good introductions grab attention with hooks, supply needed background, present a clear thesis statement foreshadowing arguments ahead plus helpfully frame paper significance, scope, and organization early so readers comprehend flows.

What is an introduction example?

One introduction example could be opening an essay discussing nursing labor unionization by referencing an alarming industry burnout statistic, acknowledging care quality challenges arising from short-staffing issues, stating a thesis arguing collective bargaining’s cost/benefit case merits, and previewing main points on financial and cultural impacts.

What are the 4 steps of an introduction?

The four essential steps comprising stellar introductions are:

  1. Opening with a hook grasping interest
  2. Providing necessary topic background
  3. Introducing a central thesis statement
  4. Structuring an overview forecasting content flow

What are the 3 sentences for your introduction?

While introductions shouldn’t be confined by length requirements, the magic 3 core sentences tend to include:

  1. The hook gripping readers’ attention
  2. The background giving required context
  3. The thesis presenting your central claim or analysis aims