Table of contents:
"Out of all interesting facts about education in the United States, one of the most shocking is that 97% of students from low-income families count on their educational institutions for free Internet access, while 40 million remain without high-speed Internet. Can we call ourselves a technologically advanced nation after that?"
What you've just read is an example of an introduction to a research paper. This is the most important part of the research paper writing, which is why students should do their best to handle it responsibly. In this article, we will explain how to select a topic, create a hook sentence, prove research-worthiness of a problem, and provide some examples.
Before we go any further, let's try and define what a research paper is. Being a college-level writing assignment, the research paper explores a specific research problem and offers possible solutions and forecasts. Unlike a typical essay, this paper has multiple sections.
Keep in mind that no matter how complicated research paper chapters may look to you, you can always rely on our writing service for help.
Tips on Preparing a Research Paper Introduction Outline
Before discussing how to start a research paper, let's have a look at its typical structure. Unlike the essay, which consists of three parts (introduction, body, and conclusion), this paper contains:
- Title page.
A cover page displaying the paper title, student name, course, and educational institution.
A summary (250-300 words) of the main points covered in the paper.
- Table of contents.
Almost the same as the outline with one difference - you also have to add page numbers and make the list more detailed.
The goal is to grab the reader's attention and get them to continue reading.
A list of the equipment, tools, and techniques used by the writer during the research process.
A section containing the results of your study.
Writer's interpretation of the results.
Summary of the main findings + forecasts for the future.
A full reference list.
List of all images and other visual elements used in your work.
An optional section meant to explain professional terminology or abbreviations.
Now that we've covered the basics, let's try and answer the question, "What is an introduction in a research paper?"
Writing The Introduction
The introduction is an opening paragraph of your paper. Its main goal is to introduce the problem to the reader and motivate them to study the issue closely. This section requires the writer to meet the following criteria:
- Grab the attention of the target audience.
- Present the topic.
- Explain your stance on the thesis statement.
To come up with an attention-grabbing introduction, you should identify your target audience first. It is a good idea to do that at the topic selection stage, i.e., at a point when you haven't yet picked a title. Keep in mind - the tone of your research paper depends on the audience, so make sure it is formal and professional.
Your intro should whet the reader's appetite and make them want to devour the main course (i.e., the body part) down to the very last bite. Your number one goal here is to let the audience understand the significance and relevance of the issue by recalling the latest facts and statistics gained from credible sources.
You should start with a hook sentence which can be:
- Rhetorical question.
- Facts or statistics.
- Literary quote.
- Quote of a famous person.
- Joke or anecdote.
- Simile, metaphor, allegory, etc.
And whatever you do, don't make the most common mistake of them all - never begin your paper by announcing the research problem.
Ready to find out what it takes to come up with a good introduction for a research paper? After announcing the subject of matter, be sure to do the following:
Review the relevant literature. Without referring to primary or secondary sources, you won't be able to come up with a thesis statement. Back up your personal opinion with in-text citations borrowed from works of renowned scientists. Keep in mind - there are two types of quotations - direct and indirect. A direct in-text citation means copy-pasting the author's words, placing them in quotation marks, and providing a reference to this source in parentheses on the References page. When inserting an indirect quotation, you should paraphrase the words of another author. Never neglect contemporary scholars. Use plagiarism-checking software to make sure the research paper is free of copied fragments (it has to be at least 95% original, including citations and excluding references).
Stress on a rationale. Being a crucial element of the opening part, this stage requires you to prove that the question you chose is research-worthy and that by providing a solution to it you may benefit society.
Create a thesis statement. Develop a thesis made up of 1-2 sentences. It will be the central argument of the entire research that you will have to test like a hypothesis and decide whether there is enough evidence to claim that you're right. Make sure your thesis has three essential features:
- It provides general information on the topic.
- It sounds engaging and precise.
- It reveals the importance of the problem.
Free Introduction Example
Let's take a look at an introduction written by one of our professional essay writers:
"Following the 9/11 attacks, humanity had reached a stage where the evil had become less obvious. Terrorism expanded, and that was a direct result of the growing anti-globalization movement in the Muslim world. Islam opposes Western democracy, and those who profess it, believe that Western values destroy their religion, traditions, and culture. In this research paper, I will analyze the 9/11 terrorist acts after more than a decade. Thanks to new information being more available, I intend to prove that the events that took place in New York were, indeed, a terrorist attack and not some international conspiracy."
What you've just read is an example of an opening paragraph for a research paper titled "Terrorism in Southeast Asia and its Middle East Roots." If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to contact us. Our writers and editors are available 24/7 and can do any academic assignment for you!