How to Develop a Term Paper Introduction

Imagine that your term paper is a product on a shelf in a supermarket, and your teacher is a customer who wants to buy it. The first thing customers pay attention to is the label: what the product is called, its color, and whether it looks appealing. Of course, appearances can be deceitful, but people often choose what to buy by looking at the package or the label. Well, your term paper introduction is its label. If a teacher likes it, chances are he will receive a good first impression, which will undoubtedly influence how he will perceive the rest of your paper.

Writing an introduction that will catch your readers’ attention is a crucial factor in being a successful writer. First of all, you need to know what your introduction should look like and how it definitely shouldn’t look. The main purpose of an introduction is to tell the reader what your paper is all about. At the same time, you shouldn’t provide all the main facts or try to be too specific because that is the purpose of the main part of your paper. Your introduction should tell readers what to expect in your paper and why it is worth reading.

Many bestselling authors do not have a distinctive style, nor do they use a lofty vocabulary, conceptual metaphors, or epithets. What makes people read their books is their ability to create interest or curiosity, encouraging us to read on to find out what happens next. This strategy can be applied to your introduction. You need a good hook. Try telling your readers an interesting, shocking, or even ambiguous detail on which you are going to focus as the main part of your paper. Or, you may ask a rhetorical question that provokes certain emotions, including curiosity.

One more aspect you might keep in mind is the length of your introduction. Sometimes the more you say, the less your readers will perceive. The introduction shouldn’t be too short. You need to provide a clear understanding of what your topic is. On the other hand, if it’s too long, your readers may soon get bored. Moreover, the length of your introduction also depends on the complexity of your paper. If a sentence, no matter how long and complex it is, is essential for your paper’s main idea to be understood correctly, you need to include it in your introduction. Once it is written, read through it several more times. If a sentence does not clearly convey the idea you want to communicate to your readers, consider making it more succinct or concise. Rewrite it until you are satisfied that it contains all the information you want the reader to have, and that the information is clearly expressed.

If your introduction is written well, your readers will expect the main part to be fascinating too. An introduction is a promise you make to your readers. So, do your best to keep it and make reading your paper a pleasant experience.

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