The Thesis Introduction: How to Present Your Thesis to the Audience Brilliantly


Writing an introduction to any academic paper is a tough thing. It is tough when you deal with a small essay, and it won’t become more comfortable when you reach the Ph.D. stage. It is very often that you already have your dissertation – perfect and complete – but the introduction part is hanging like the sword of Damocles. All writing manuals stress the importance of this part, thus only increasing the stress level for the authors.

So, we offer this brief guide on how to write a thesis introduction. We’ll review all the things that you need to know about this task.

The goals of the proper thesis introduction

Any introduction has several goals, but the main ones are straightforward:

  • Tell the audience what your dissertation is about;
  • Explain the importance of that work;
  • Describe how it was conducted and laid out.

On practice, you should pay attention to the following aspects:

  1. Provide the context and background of your research. It will be the data necessary for the reader to understand what your dissertation relates to. This way, you specify your subject and stress that it is actual and already includes authoritative studies.
  2. Establish the exact niche of your work. You can’t ground it on others’ researches only. It needs to have an innovative value and fill some gaps or add more evidence to existing fields of knowledge.
  3. Prove that your work is significant, and your results are trustworthy. For this, state the central argument of your work and specify the aims and your methods and limitations. They all must have a scientific value.

Practical methods of writing a thesis introduction

It is always recommended to write the Introduction to your dissertation when you have the rest of the text. However, you need to have some draft – a brief sketch of the Introduction from the very beginning. It contains essential markers leading your work in the right direction, and you should establish them at once.

Get some type of a placeholder for the introduction

It should include information about your niche, goals, methods, and the thesis statement. When you complete the dissertation, you can refer to that placeholder to fill it with the details and develop the correct structure.

Define your audience

Like you did with all the essays you wrote before, you need to know who you address your work. It will define the approach and language means. The Introduction part is the first glance your audience will get about your thesis, and you should calculate how you can attract their attention and encourage them. The necessary factors to consider are the background of your audience and their knowledge of the subject. On these grounds, you can choose the most suitable means.

Use the “hook” element to grab the readers’ attention

Speaking about the “hook,” we mean the very first sentences of the dissertation. There are some widely recognized means like using questions and citations, but they are too familiar. If you want to be more original, do a little additional research:

  • Review the thesis sources that were the most useful for you, and check their first sentences. Note their “hooks” and analyze them – what attracted you personally in them?
  • Consider your topic in terms of its importance and appeal. What attracted you personally? Make a list of these attractive features.
  • Check the actual representation of the topic, if there are debates in society, or controversial statements, or anything else. These features are the most likely “links” between your work and the audience.
  • Relate the thesis introduction again to the audience. You should define which arguments or other means would appeal to them more efficiently.
  • Enforce the “hook” by appealing to emotions. For instance, you can surprise the audience or offer them to view the problem from a new angle. Use these means to evoke their reaction.

Give the relevant information about the work

Your audience may have different backgrounds, but you need to help them to understand what your work is about at once. The Introduction must quickly describe your field of study and the particular topic. Also, you should define your key concepts and terms. This way, you make sure that the public will get the idea about your research and will be able to follow it.

Describe the purpose of the thesis research

Explain your motivation to refer to the specific topic and your understanding of its importance. A proper dissertation should have a practical value, so, tell how exactly your results can be used. It is also the right place for a brief literature overview – you get the audience familiar with the main points of view on the topic. Note that you should talk about the best experiments’ results and name the most outstanding scientists.

Include essential ideas before the thesis statement

In this part, you can share your reasoning – describe the main ideas you got about the topic, and how they brought you to the thesis statement. After that, formulate that statement itself, and proceed to the central part of your dissertation.

Writing tips for the proper thesis introduction

  • Don’t make this part too detailed or lacking details. Provide as much information as necessary to help your audience to get your ideas and follow them.
  • Avoid using too many technical terms and phrases without defining their meanings. The Introduction should be understandable to non-experts. Don’t overwhelm the audience with specific vocabulary unless you must.
  • Keep the structure! Outline the Introduction and write several drafts until you are sure that it is clear and reads comfortably.
  • Use the Present Simple tense. However, for the background information, you need the Past Simple or Present Perfect tenses.
  • Don’t include too many citations. A brief literary overview has to justify your choice of the topic and your methods, but you should not discuss the sources and list all the points of view.

It is a crucial part of your work, and you need to know how to write a thesis introduction right. But this guide will help you!

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