Introduction in Argumentative Essays
Introduction is the first part of your argumentative essay that the reader comes across.
To be effective, it has to be catchy and informative at the same time.
This makes crafting an introduction one of the key steps for writing an argumentative essay.
The introduction should be clear and precise.
Normally, it should be about 6 complete sentences, or just like any other paragraph in the essay.
Parts of the Introduction
A good introduction for an argumentative essay should have three parts, which include:
2. Background information
This should be the first part of an introduction for an argumentative essay.
It should be the first line in the introduction.
The objective of the hook is to grab the attention of the reader.
To serve this purpose effectively, it has to arouse the interest of the reader and therefore persuade them to go ahead and read the whole essay.
Some ideas for a hook for an argumentative essay introduction may include:
1. Exciting, scary, or intense moment
2. Question or riddle to ponder
3. Strong emotions or feelings
5. Repetitive phrase or list
6. Sound words
7. Metaphor or simile
8. String of adjectives
9. Question or a sequence of questions
10. Internal monologue
The background is the second part of an introduction for an argumentative essay.
It entails a short description of the topic under study.
This part requires you to include information necessary for the reader to understand the argumentative advanced by the essay topic.
Some of the common elements of the background information encompass:
1. History of the issue being addressed in the topic
2. Definition of unfamiliar terms
Usually, the background is the larger part of the introduction.
It should however remain concise and include only the information necessary in giving the topic a context.
The thesis statement is the last part of an introduction for an argumentative essay.
It identifies the focus of the essay.
The thesis statement is considered a roadmap for your essay as it should indicate the direction the essay seeks to take.
As explored in the thesis section, it should have 3 parts (subject, opinion, and supporting reasons).
The subject entails the topic of your argumentative essay.
On the other hand, opinion encompasses your claim or what you exactly think about the topic under study.
Supporting reasons involve the rationale as to why you have taken your viewpoint on the topic.
Example of a Thesis Statement for an Argumentative Essay
Subject: Funding charter schools
Opinion: Government should not fund charter schools
i. Funding charter schools entrenches segregation
ii. Funding charter schools deprives public schools dire resources
iii. Perpetuates extensive resource wastage and fraud
Thesis statement: Government should not fund charter schools because funding them entrenches segregation, deprives public schools dire resources, and perpetuates extensive resource wastage and fraud.
Note that connecting the opinion to the reasons should be done using words or phrases such as:
2. So that
4. In order
Tips for Writing an Introduction
As earlier mentioned, a good introduction gives a good first impression for your argumentative essay.
Writing such an introduction requires the application of some guidelines.
Such guidelines include:
1. Use a Strong Hook
It is important to ensure that your argumentative essay introduction has a strong hook.
Accordingly, the first sentence of the essay should capture the interest of the reader.
In this, the hook should immediately grab their attention and make them yearn for more.
Depending on the topic, you could use one of the approaches discussed above.
2. Clearly Introduce the Topic
It is necessary to clearly state the topic under study.
The reader should not struggle to figure out what specific aspects of a subject that you intend to explore.
Instead, the introduction should give the reader a clear map on what you are writing about.
Introducing the topic should be done immediately after the hook.
3. Provide a Brief but Solid Background
After introducing the topic, you should provide a context for the essay.
Such a context should be as brief as possible.
However, it has to be adequate enough to ensure that reader understands the origin of or reason for your interest in the topic.
Providing the context should consider the following aspects:
4. Clearly State the Importance of the Topic
It is vital to ensure that the importance of the topic is clear.
The reader should understand why they should care about what you are writing about.
This entails stipulating the objective of the argumentative essay.
The reader has to be convinced as to why it is necessary to evaluate the topic of the essay.
5. Finish with a Clear Thesis Statement
You have to ensure that thesis statement is clear.
A good introduction for an argumentative essay should be specific on what argument you intend to advance.
Such a thesis statement should make sure that the reader is able to discern your position on the topic.
It should be focused and within the right scope.
Mistakes to Avoid when Writing an Introduction
There are common mistakes that scholars make when writing the introduction of an argumentative essay.
To ensure that the essay scores highly, it is necessary to avoid these mistakes.
Such mistakes include:
1. A Weak Thesis Statement
One of the biggest mistakes you can make when writing an introduction for an argumentative essay is to have poorly constructed thesis statement.
If the reader struggles to grasp the argument you intend to advance in the essay then the thesis statement is not fit for purpose.
As well, if it is too broad it is not suitable.
Unreasonable and undebatable thesis statements are also weak and unfit.
For the thesis statement to be strong, you should ensure that it is:
2. Including your Arguments
Presenting your arguments in the introduction is a mistake that should always be avoided.
The introduction should only stipulate the argument to be advanced, which should be done using the thesis statement.
Arguments and their merits and supporting evidence should be left for the corresponding body paragraphs.
The introduction should include only a hook, background information, and thesis statement.
3. Lengthy Introduction
A lengthy introduction defeats its purpose.
In cases where it is too long, chances are that you have included unnecessary information, blurred the focus of the essay, and muddled the thesis statement.
Instead, it should be brief and to the point.
A good introduction for an argumentative essay should be about 6 complete sentences or less (typically 140 words at most).
4. Lacklustre Introduction
There is nothing more unpleasant than a boring introduction.
No matter how strong your supporting points are, an uninteresting introduction always creates a negative impression to the reader.
Creating an interesting introduction starts with a strong hook.
After a catchy hook, you have to follow with interesting background information that is logically organized.
5. Poor Planning
Lack of adequate preparation is a common mistake made by scholars when writing an introduction for an argumentative essay.
Proper planning has to be done whether it entails researching, brainstorming, or outlining.
Importantly, you should create a structure for the introduction before you begin the actual writing.
Creating such a structure could be done when outlining the entire essay.
You should have bullet points for each of the key parts of the introduction (hook, background, and thesis statement).