How to write a fantastic thesis introduction (+15 examples)
The thesis introduction, usually chapter 1, is one of the most important chapters of a thesis. It sets the scene. It previews key arguments and findings. And it helps the reader to understand the structure of the thesis. In short, a lot is riding on this first chapter. With the following tips, you can write a powerful thesis introduction.
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Elements of a fantastic thesis introduction
Open with a (personal) story, begin with a problem, define a clear research gap, describe the scientific relevance of the thesis, describe the societal relevance of the thesis, write down the thesis’ core claim in 1-2 sentences, support your argument with sufficient evidence, consider possible objections, address the empirical research context, give a taste of the thesis’ empirical analysis, hint at the practical implications of the research, provide a reading guide, briefly summarise all chapters to come, design a figure illustrating the thesis structure.
An introductory chapter plays an integral part in every thesis. The first chapter has to include quite a lot of information to contextualise the research. At the same time, a good thesis introduction is not too long, but clear and to the point.
A powerful thesis introduction does the following:
- It captures the reader’s attention.
- It presents a clear research gap and emphasises the thesis’ relevance.
- It provides a compelling argument.
- It previews the research findings.
- It explains the structure of the thesis.
In addition, a powerful thesis introduction is well-written, logically structured, and free of grammar and spelling errors. Reputable thesis editors can elevate the quality of your introduction to the next level. If you are in search of a trustworthy thesis or dissertation editor who upholds high-quality standards and offers efficient turnaround times, I recommend the professional thesis and dissertation editing service provided by Editage .
This list can feel quite overwhelming. However, with some easy tips and tricks, you can accomplish all these goals in your thesis introduction. (And if you struggle with finding the right wording, have a look at academic key phrases for introductions .)
Ways to capture the reader’s attention
A powerful thesis introduction should spark the reader’s interest on the first pages. A reader should be enticed to continue reading! There are three common ways to capture the reader’s attention.
An established way to capture the reader’s attention in a thesis introduction is by starting with a story. Regardless of how abstract and ‘scientific’ the actual thesis content is, it can be useful to ease the reader into the topic with a short story.
This story can be, for instance, based on one of your study participants. It can also be a very personal account of one of your own experiences, which drew you to study the thesis topic in the first place.
Start by providing data or statistics
Data and statistics are another established way to immediately draw in your reader. Especially surprising or shocking numbers can highlight the importance of a thesis topic in the first few sentences!
So if your thesis topic lends itself to being kick-started with data or statistics, you are in for a quick and easy way to write a memorable thesis introduction.
The third established way to capture the reader’s attention is by starting with the problem that underlies your thesis. It is advisable to keep the problem simple. A few sentences at the start of the chapter should suffice.
Usually, at a later stage in the introductory chapter, it is common to go more in-depth, describing the research problem (and its scientific and societal relevance) in more detail.
You may also like: Minimalist writing for a better thesis
Emphasising the thesis’ relevance
A good thesis is a relevant thesis. No one wants to read about a concept that has already been explored hundreds of times, or that no one cares about.
Of course, a thesis heavily relies on the work of other scholars. However, each thesis is – and should be – unique. If you want to write a fantastic thesis introduction, your job is to point out this uniqueness!
In academic research, a research gap signifies a research area or research question that has not been explored yet, that has been insufficiently explored, or whose insights and findings are outdated.
Every thesis needs a crystal-clear research gap. Spell it out instead of letting your reader figure out why your thesis is relevant.
* This example has been taken from an actual academic paper on toxic behaviour in online games: Liu, J. and Agur, C. (2022). “After All, They Don’t Know Me” Exploring the Psychological Mechanisms of Toxic Behavior in Online Games. Games and Culture 1–24, DOI: 10.1177/15554120221115397
The scientific relevance of a thesis highlights the importance of your work in terms of advancing theoretical insights on a topic. You can think of this part as your contribution to the (international) academic literature.
Scientific relevance comes in different forms. For instance, you can critically assess a prominent theory explaining a specific phenomenon. Maybe something is missing? Or you can develop a novel framework that combines different frameworks used by other scholars. Or you can draw attention to the context-specific nature of a phenomenon that is discussed in the international literature.
The societal relevance of a thesis highlights the importance of your research in more practical terms. You can think of this part as your contribution beyond theoretical insights and academic publications.
Why are your insights useful? Who can benefit from your insights? How can your insights improve existing practices?
Formulating a compelling argument
Arguments are sets of reasons supporting an idea, which – in academia – often integrate theoretical and empirical insights. Think of an argument as an umbrella statement, or core claim. It should be no longer than one or two sentences.
Including an argument in the introduction of your thesis may seem counterintuitive. After all, the reader will be introduced to your core claim before reading all the chapters of your thesis that led you to this claim in the first place.
But rest assured: A clear argument at the start of your thesis introduction is a sign of a good thesis. It works like a movie teaser to generate interest. And it helps the reader to follow your subsequent line of argumentation.
The core claim of your thesis should be accompanied by sufficient evidence. This does not mean that you have to write 10 pages about your results at this point.
However, you do need to show the reader that your claim is credible and legitimate because of the work you have done.
A good argument already anticipates possible objections. Not everyone will agree with your core claim. Therefore, it is smart to think ahead. What criticism can you expect?
Think about reasons or opposing positions that people can come up with to disagree with your claim. Then, try to address them head-on.
Providing a captivating preview of findings
Similar to presenting a compelling argument, a fantastic thesis introduction also previews some of the findings. When reading an introduction, the reader wants to learn a bit more about the research context. Furthermore, a reader should get a taste of the type of analysis that will be conducted. And lastly, a hint at the practical implications of the findings encourages the reader to read until the end.
If you focus on a specific empirical context, make sure to provide some information about it. The empirical context could be, for instance, a country, an island, a school or city. Make sure the reader understands why you chose this context for your research, and why it fits to your research objective.
If you did all your research in a lab, this section is obviously irrelevant. However, in that case you should explain the setup of your experiment, etcetera.
The empirical part of your thesis centers around the collection and analysis of information. What information, and what evidence, did you generate? And what are some of the key findings?
For instance, you can provide a short summary of the different research methods that you used to collect data. Followed by a short overview of how you analysed this data, and some of the key findings. The reader needs to understand why your empirical analysis is worth reading.
You already highlighted the practical relevance of your thesis in the introductory chapter. However, you should also provide a preview of some of the practical implications that you will develop in your thesis based on your findings.
Presenting a crystal clear thesis structure
A fantastic thesis introduction helps the reader to understand the structure and logic of your whole thesis. This is probably the easiest part to write in a thesis introduction. However, this part can be best written at the very end, once everything else is ready.
A reading guide is an essential part in a thesis introduction! Usually, the reading guide can be found toward the end of the introductory chapter.
The reading guide basically tells the reader what to expect in the chapters to come.
In a longer thesis, such as a PhD thesis, it can be smart to provide a summary of each chapter to come. Think of a paragraph for each chapter, almost in the form of an abstract.
For shorter theses, which also have a shorter introduction, this step is not necessary.
Especially for longer theses, it tends to be a good idea to design a simple figure that illustrates the structure of your thesis. It helps the reader to better grasp the logic of your thesis.
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How to write a good thesis introduction
Many people struggle to write a thesis introduction. Much of your research prep should be done and you should be ready to start your introduction. But often, it’s not clear what needs to be included in a thesis introduction. If you feel stuck at this point not knowing how to start, this guide can help.
Tip: If you’re really struggling to write your thesis intro, consider putting in a placeholder until you write more of the body of your thesis. Then, come back to your intro once you have a stronger sense of the overall content of your thesis.
A good introduction draws readers in while providing the setup for the entire project. There is no single way to write an introduction that will always work for every topic , but the points below can act as a guide. These points can help you write a good thesis introduction.
- 1. Identify your readership
Before even starting with your first sentence, consider who your readers are. Most likely, your readers will be the professors who are advising you on your thesis.
You should also consider readers of your thesis who are not specialists in your field. Writing with them in your mind will help you to be as clear as possible; this will make your thesis more understandable and enjoyable overall.
Tip: Always strive to be clear, correct, concrete, and concise in your writing.
- 2. Hook the reader and grab their attention
The first sentence of the thesis is crucial. Looking back at your own research, think about how other writers may have hooked you.
It is common to start with a question or quotation, but these types of hooks are often overused. The best way to start your introduction is with a sentence that is broad and interesting and that seamlessly transitions into your argument.
Once again, consider your audience and how much background information they need to understand your approach. You can start by making a list of what is interesting about your topic:
- Are there any current events or controversies associated with your topic that might be interesting for your introduction?
- What kinds of background information might be useful for a reader to understand right away?
- Are there historical anecdotes or other situations that uniquely illustrate an important aspect of your argument?
- 3. Provide relevant background
A good introduction also needs to contain enough background information to allow the reader to understand the thesis statement and arguments. The amount of background information required will depend on the topic .
There should be enough background information so you don't have to spend too much time with it in the body of the thesis, but not so much that it becomes uninteresting.
Tip: Strike a balance between background information that is too broad or too specific.
- 4. Give the reader a sense of what the paper is about
Let the reader know what the purpose of the study is. Make sure to include the following points:
- Briefly describe the motivation behind your research.
- Describe the topic and scope of your research.
- Explain the practical relevance of your research.
- Explain the scholarly consensus related to your topic: briefly explain the most important articles and how they are related to your research.
- 5. Preview key points and lead into your thesis statement
At the end of your introduction, you should lead into your thesis statement by briefly bringing up a few of your main supporting details and by previewing what will be covered in the main part of the thesis. You’ll want to highlight the overall structure of your thesis so that readers will have a sense of what they will encounter as they read.
- Frequently Asked Questions about writing a good thesis introduction
A good introduction draws readers in while providing the setup for the entire project. There is no single way to write an introduction that will always work for every topic, but these tips will help you write a great introduction:
- Identify your readership.
- Grab the reader's attention.
- Provide relevant background.
- Preview key points and lead into the thesis statement.
A good introduction needs to contain enough background information, and let the reader know what the purpose of the study is. Make sure to include the following points:
- Briefly describe the motivation for your research.
The length of the introduction will depend on the length of the whole thesis. Usually, an introduction makes up roughly 10 per cent of the total word count.
The best way to start your introduction is with a sentence that is broad and interesting and that seamlessly transitions into your argument. Consider the audience, then think of something that would grab their attention.
In Open Access: Theses and Dissertations you can find thousands of recent works. Take a look at any of the theses or dissertations for real-life examples of introductions that were already approved.
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How to Write a Thesis Introduction
What types of information should you include in your introduction .
In the introduction of your thesis, you’ll be trying to do three main things, which are called Moves :
- Move 1 establish your territory (say what the topic is about)
- Move 2 establish a niche (show why there needs to be further research on your topic)
- Move 3 introduce the current research (make hypotheses; state the research questions)
Each Move has a number of stages. Depending on what you need to say in your introduction, you might use one or more stages. Table 1 provides you with a list of the most commonly occurring stages of introductions in Honours theses (colour-coded to show the Moves ). You will also find examples of Introductions, divided into stages with sample sentence extracts. Once you’ve looked at Examples 1 and 2, try the exercise that follows.
Most thesis introductions include SOME (but not all) of the stages listed below. There are variations between different Schools and between different theses, depending on the purpose of the thesis.
Stages in a thesis introduction
- state the general topic and give some background
- provide a review of the literature related to the topic
- define the terms and scope of the topic
- outline the current situation
- evaluate the current situation (advantages/ disadvantages) and identify the gap
- identify the importance of the proposed research
- state the research problem/ questions
- state the research aims and/or research objectives
- state the hypotheses
- outline the order of information in the thesis
- outline the methodology
Example 1: Evaluation of Boron Solid Source Diffusion for High-Efficiency Silicon Solar Cells (School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering)
Example 2: Methods for Measuring Hepatitis C Viral Complexity (School of Biotechnology and Biological Sciences)
Note: this introduction includes the literature review.
Now that you have read example 1 and 2, what are the differences?
Example 3: The IMO Severe-Weather Criterion Applied to High-Speed Monohulls (School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering)
Example 4: The Steiner Tree Problem (School of Computer Science and Engineering)
Example 5.1 (extract 1): The effects of Fluoride on the reproduction of three native Australian plant Species (School of Geography)
Example 5.2 (extract 2): The effects of Fluoride on the reproduction of three native Australian plant Species (School of Geography)
Example 5.4 (extract 4): The effects of Fluoride on the reproduction of three native Australian plant Species (School of Geography)
Example 5.5 (extract 5): The effects of Fluoride on the reproduction of three native Australian plant Species (School of Geography)
Example 5.6 (extract 6): The effects of Fluoride on the reproduction of three native Australian plant Species (School of Geography)
Well, firstly, there are many choices that you can make. You will notice that there are variations not only between the different Schools in your faculty, but also between individual theses, depending on the type of information that is being communicated. However, there are a few elements that a good Introduction should include, at the very minimum:
- Either Statement of general topic Or Background information about the topic;
- Either Identification of disadvantages of current situation Or Identification of the gap in current research;
- Identification of importance of proposed research
- Either Statement of aims Or Statement of objectives
- An Outline of the order of information in the thesis
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How To Write A Dissertation Introduction Chapter:
The 7 essential ingredients of an a-grade introduction.
By: Derek Jansen (MBA). Reviewed By Dr Eunice Rautenbach (D. Tech) | March 2020
If you’re reading this, you’re probably at the daunting early phases of writing up the introduction chapter of your dissertation or thesis. It can be intimidating, I know.
In this post, we’ll look at the 7 essential ingredients of a strong dissertation or thesis introduction chapter, as well as the essential things you need to keep in mind as you craft each section. We’ll also share some useful tips to help you optimize your approach.
Overview: How To Write An Introduction Chapter
- Understand the purpose and function of the intro chapter
- Craft an enticing and engaging opening section
- Provide a background and context to the study
- Clearly define the research problem
- State your research aims, objectives and questions
- Explain the significance of your study
- Identify the limitations of your research
- Outline the structure of your dissertation or thesis
A quick sidenote:
You’ll notice that I’ve used the words dissertation and thesis interchangeably. While these terms reflect different levels of research – for example, Masters vs PhD-level research – the introduction chapter generally contains the same 7 essential ingredients regardless of level. So, in this post, dissertation introduction equals thesis introduction.
Start with why.
To craft a high-quality dissertation or thesis introduction chapter, you need to understand exactly what this chapter needs to achieve. In other words, what’s its purpose ? As the name suggests, the introduction chapter needs to introduce the reader to your research so that they understand what you’re trying to figure out, or what problem you’re trying to solve. More specifically, you need to answer four important questions in your introduction chapter.
These questions are:
- What will you be researching? (in other words, your research topic)
- Why is that worthwhile? (in other words, your justification)
- What will the scope of your research be? (in other words, what will you cover and what won’t you cover)
- What will the limitations of your research be? (in other words, what will the potential shortcomings of your research be?)
Simply put, your dissertation’s introduction chapter needs to provide an overview of your planned research , as well as a clear rationale for it. In other words, this chapter has to explain the “what” and the “why” of your research – what’s it all about and why’s that important.
Simple enough, right?
Well, the trick is finding the appropriate depth of information. As the researcher, you’ll be extremely close to your topic and this makes it easy to get caught up in the minor details. While these intricate details might be interesting, you need to write your introduction chapter on more of a “need-to-know” type basis, or it will end up way too lengthy and dense. You need to balance painting a clear picture with keeping things concise. Don’t worry though – you’ll be able to explore all the intricate details in later chapters.
Now that you understand what you need to achieve from your introduction chapter, we can get into the details. While the exact requirements for this chapter can vary from university to university, there are seven core components that most universities will require. We call these the seven essential ingredients .
The 7 Essential Ingredients
- The opening section – where you’ll introduce the reader to your research in high-level terms
- The background to the study – where you’ll explain the context of your project
- The research problem – where you’ll explain the “gap” that exists in the current research
- The research aims , objectives and questions – where you’ll clearly state what your research will aim to achieve
- The significance (or justification) – where you’ll explain why your research is worth doing and the value it will provide to the world
- The limitations – where you’ll acknowledge the potential limitations of your project and approach
- The structure – where you’ll briefly outline the structure of your dissertation or thesis to help orient the reader
By incorporating these seven essential ingredients into your introduction chapter, you’ll comprehensively cover both the “ what ” and the “ why ” I mentioned earlier – in other words, you’ll achieve the purpose of the chapter.
Side note – you can also use these 7 ingredients in this order as the structure for your chapter to ensure a smooth, logical flow. This isn’t essential, but, generally speaking, it helps create an engaging narrative that’s easy for your reader to understand. If you’d like, you can also download our free introduction chapter template here.
Alright – let’s look at each of the ingredients now.
#1 – The Opening Section
The very first essential ingredient for your dissertation introduction is, well, an introduction or opening section. Just like every other chapter, your introduction chapter needs to start by providing a brief overview of what you’ll be covering in the chapter.
This section needs to engage the reader with clear, concise language that can be easily understood and digested. If the reader (your marker!) has to struggle through it, they’ll lose interest, which will make it harder for you to earn marks. Just because you’re writing an academic paper doesn’t mean you can ignore the basic principles of engaging writing used by marketers, bloggers, and journalists. At the end of the day, you’re all trying to sell an idea – yours is just a research idea.
So, what goes into this opening section?
Well, while there’s no set formula, it’s a good idea to include the following four foundational sentences in your opening section:
1 – A sentence or two introducing the overall field of your research.
“Organisational skills development involves identifying current or potential skills gaps within a business and developing programs to resolve these gaps. Management research, including X, Y and Z, has clearly established that organisational skills development is an essential contributor to business growth.”
2 – A sentence introducing your specific research problem.
“However, there are conflicting views and an overall lack of research regarding how best to manage skills development initiatives in highly dynamic environments where subject knowledge is rapidly and continuously evolving – for example, in the website development industry.”
3 – A sentence stating your research aims and objectives.
“This research aims to identify and evaluate skills development approaches and strategies for highly dynamic industries in which subject knowledge is continuously evolving.”.
4 – A sentence outlining the layout of the chapter.
“This chapter will provide an introduction to the study by first discussing the background and context, followed by the research problem, the research aims, objectives and questions, the significance and finally, the limitations.”
As I mentioned, this opening section of your introduction chapter shouldn’t be lengthy . Typically, these four sentences should fit neatly into one or two paragraphs, max. What you’re aiming for here is a clear, concise introduction to your research – not a detailed account.
PS – If some of this terminology sounds unfamiliar, don’t stress – I’ll explain each of the concepts later in this post.
#2 – Background to the study
Now that you’ve provided a high-level overview of your dissertation or thesis, it’s time to go a little deeper and lay a foundation for your research topic. This foundation is what the second ingredient is all about – the background to your study.
So, what is the background section all about?
Well, this section of your introduction chapter should provide a broad overview of the topic area that you’ll be researching, as well as the current contextual factors . This could include, for example, a brief history of the topic, recent developments in the area, key pieces of research in the area and so on. In other words, in this section, you need to provide the relevant background information to give the reader a decent foundational understanding of your research area.
Let’s look at an example to make this a little more concrete.
If we stick with the skills development topic I mentioned earlier, the background to the study section would start by providing an overview of the skills development area and outline the key existing research. Then, it would go on to discuss how the modern-day context has created a new challenge for traditional skills development strategies and approaches. Specifically, that in many industries, technical knowledge is constantly and rapidly evolving, and traditional education providers struggle to keep up with the pace of new technologies.
Importantly, you need to write this section with the assumption that the reader is not an expert in your topic area. So, if there are industry-specific jargon and complex terminology, you should briefly explain that here , so that the reader can understand the rest of your document.
Don’t make assumptions about the reader’s knowledge – in most cases, your markers will not be able to ask you questions if they don’t understand something. So, always err on the safe side and explain anything that’s not common knowledge.
#3 – The research problem
Now that you’ve given your reader an overview of your research area, it’s time to get specific about the research problem that you’ll address in your dissertation or thesis. While the background section would have eluded to a potential research problem (or even multiple research problems), the purpose of this section is to narrow the focus and highlight the specific research problem you’ll focus on.
But, what exactly is a research problem, you ask?
Well, a research problem can be any issue or question for which there isn’t already a well-established and agreed-upon answer in the existing research. In other words, a research problem exists when there’s a need to answer a question (or set of questions), but there’s a gap in the existing literature , or the existing research is conflicting and/or inconsistent.
So, to present your research problem, you need to make it clear what exactly is missing in the current literature and why this is a problem . It’s usually a good idea to structure this discussion into three sections – specifically:
- What’s already well-established in the literature (in other words, the current state of research)
- What’s missing in the literature (in other words, the literature gap)
- Why this is a problem (in other words, why it’s important to fill this gap)
Let’s look at an example of this structure using the skills development topic.
Organisational skills development is critically important for employee satisfaction and company performance (reference). Numerous studies have investigated strategies and approaches to manage skills development programs within organisations (reference).
(this paragraph explains what’s already well-established in the literature)
However, these studies have traditionally focused on relatively slow-paced industries where key skills and knowledge do not change particularly often. This body of theory presents a problem for industries that face a rapidly changing skills landscape – for example, the website development industry – where new platforms, languages and best practices emerge on an extremely frequent basis.
(this paragraph explains what’s missing from the literature)
As a result, the existing research is inadequate for industries in which essential knowledge and skills are constantly and rapidly evolving, as it assumes a slow pace of knowledge development. Industries in such environments, therefore, find themselves ill-equipped in terms of skills development strategies and approaches.
(this paragraph explains why the research gap is problematic)
As you can see in this example, in a few lines, we’ve explained (1) the current state of research, (2) the literature gap and (3) why that gap is problematic. By doing this, the research problem is made crystal clear, which lays the foundation for the next ingredient.
#4 – The research aims, objectives and questions
Now that you’ve clearly identified your research problem, it’s time to identify your research aims and objectives , as well as your research questions . In other words, it’s time to explain what you’re going to do about the research problem.
So, what do you need to do here?
Well, the starting point is to clearly state your research aim (or aims) . The research aim is the main goal or the overarching purpose of your dissertation or thesis. In other words, it’s a high-level statement of what you’re aiming to achieve.
Let’s look at an example, sticking with the skills development topic:
“Given the lack of research regarding organisational skills development in fast-moving industries, this study will aim to identify and evaluate the skills development approaches utilised by web development companies in the UK”.
As you can see in this example, the research aim is clearly outlined, as well as the specific context in which the research will be undertaken (in other words, web development companies in the UK).
Next up is the research objective (or objectives) . While the research aims cover the high-level “what”, the research objectives are a bit more practically oriented, looking at specific things you’ll be doing to achieve those research aims.
Let’s take a look at an example of some research objectives (ROs) to fit the research aim.
- RO1 – To identify common skills development strategies and approaches utilised by web development companies in the UK.
- RO2 – To evaluate the effectiveness of these strategies and approaches.
- RO3 – To compare and contrast these strategies and approaches in terms of their strengths and weaknesses.
As you can see from this example, these objectives describe the actions you’ll take and the specific things you’ll investigate in order to achieve your research aims. They break down the research aims into more specific, actionable objectives.
The final step is to state your research questions . Your research questions bring the aims and objectives another level “down to earth”. These are the specific questions that your dissertation or theses will seek to answer. They’re not fluffy, ambiguous or conceptual – they’re very specific and you’ll need to directly answer them in your conclusions chapter .
The research questions typically relate directly to the research objectives and sometimes can look a bit obvious, but they are still extremely important. Let’s take a look at an example of the research questions (RQs) that would flow from the research objectives I mentioned earlier.
- RQ1 – What skills development strategies and approaches are currently being used by web development companies in the UK?
- RQ2 – How effective are each of these strategies and approaches?
- RQ3 – What are the strengths and weaknesses of each of these strategies and approaches?
As you can see, the research questions mimic the research objectives , but they are presented in question format. These questions will act as the driving force throughout your dissertation or thesis – from the literature review to the methodology and onward – so they’re really important.
A final note about this section – it’s really important to be clear about the scope of your study (more technically, the delimitations ). In other words, what you WILL cover and what you WON’T cover. If your research aims, objectives and questions are too broad, you’ll risk losing focus or investigating a problem that is too big to solve within a single dissertation.
Simply put, you need to establish clear boundaries in your research. You can do this, for example, by limiting it to a specific industry, country or time period. That way, you’ll ringfence your research, which will allow you to investigate your topic deeply and thoroughly – which is what earns marks!
Need a helping hand?
#5 – Significance
Now that you’ve made it clear what you’ll be researching, it’s time to make a strong argument regarding your study’s importance and significance . In other words, now that you’ve covered the what, it’s time to cover the why – enter essential ingredient number 5 – significance.
Of course, by this stage, you’ve already briefly alluded to the importance of your study in your background and research problem sections, but you haven’t explicitly stated how your research findings will benefit the world . So, now’s your chance to clearly state how your study will benefit either industry , academia , or – ideally – both . In other words, you need to explain how your research will make a difference and what implications it will have.
Let’s take a look at an example.
“This study will contribute to the body of knowledge on skills development by incorporating skills development strategies and approaches for industries in which knowledge and skills are rapidly and constantly changing. This will help address the current shortage of research in this area and provide real-world value to organisations operating in such dynamic environments.”
As you can see in this example, the paragraph clearly explains how the research will help fill a gap in the literature and also provide practical real-world value to organisations.
This section doesn’t need to be particularly lengthy, but it does need to be convincing . You need to “sell” the value of your research here so that the reader understands why it’s worth committing an entire dissertation or thesis to it. This section needs to be the salesman of your research. So, spend some time thinking about the ways in which your research will make a unique contribution to the world and how the knowledge you create could benefit both academia and industry – and then “sell it” in this section.
#6 – The limitations
Now that you’ve “sold” your research to the reader and hopefully got them excited about what’s coming up in the rest of your dissertation, it’s time to briefly discuss the potential limitations of your research.
But you’re probably thinking, hold up – what limitations? My research is well thought out and carefully designed – why would there be limitations?
Well, no piece of research is perfect . This is especially true for a dissertation or thesis – which typically has a very low or zero budget, tight time constraints and limited researcher experience. Generally, your dissertation will be the first or second formal research project you’ve ever undertaken, so it’s unlikely to win any research awards…
Simply put, your research will invariably have limitations. Don’t stress yourself out though – this is completely acceptable (and expected). Even “professional” research has limitations – as I said, no piece of research is perfect. The key is to recognise the limitations upfront and be completely transparent about them, so that future researchers are aware of them and can improve the study’s design to minimise the limitations and strengthen the findings.
Generally, you’ll want to consider at least the following four common limitations. These are:
- Your scope – for example, perhaps your focus is very narrow and doesn’t consider how certain variables interact with each other.
- Your research methodology – for example, a qualitative methodology could be criticised for being overly subjective, or a quantitative methodology could be criticised for oversimplifying the situation (learn more about methodologies here ).
- Your resources – for example, a lack of time, money, equipment and your own research experience.
- The generalisability of your findings – for example, the findings from the study of a specific industry or country can’t necessarily be generalised to other industries or countries.
Don’t be shy here. There’s no use trying to hide the limitations or weaknesses of your research. In fact, the more critical you can be of your study, the better. The markers want to see that you are aware of the limitations as this demonstrates your understanding of research design – so be brutal.
#7 – The structural outline
Now that you’ve clearly communicated what your research is going to be about, why it’s important and what the limitations of your research will be, the final ingredient is the structural outline.The purpose of this section is simply to provide your reader with a roadmap of what to expect in terms of the structure of your dissertation or thesis.
In this section, you’ll need to provide a brief summary of each chapter’s purpose and contents (including the introduction chapter). A sentence or two explaining what you’ll do in each chapter is generally enough to orient the reader. You don’t want to get too detailed here – it’s purely an outline, not a summary of your research.
Let’s look at an example:
In Chapter One, the context of the study has been introduced. The research objectives and questions have been identified, and the value of such research argued. The limitations of the study have also been discussed.
In Chapter Two, the existing literature will be reviewed and a foundation of theory will be laid out to identify key skills development approaches and strategies within the context of fast-moving industries, especially technology-intensive industries.
In Chapter Three, the methodological choices will be explored. Specifically, the adoption of a qualitative, inductive research approach will be justified, and the broader research design will be discussed, including the limitations thereof.
So, as you can see from the example, this section is simply an outline of the chapter structure, allocating a short paragraph to each chapter. Done correctly, the outline will help your reader understand what to expect and reassure them that you’ll address the multiple facets of the study.
By the way – if you’re unsure of how to structure your dissertation or thesis, be sure to check out our video post which explains dissertation structure .
Keep calm and carry on.
Hopefully you feel a bit more prepared for this challenge of crafting your dissertation or thesis introduction chapter now. Take a deep breath and remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day – conquer one ingredient at a time and you’ll be firmly on the path to success.
Let’s quickly recap – the 7 ingredients are:
- The opening section – where you give a brief, high-level overview of what your research will be about.
- The study background – where you introduce the reader to key theory, concepts and terminology, as well as the context of your study.
- The research problem – where you explain what the problem with the current research is. In other words, the research gap.
- The research aims , objectives and questions – where you clearly state what your dissertation will investigate.
- The significance – where you explain what value your research will provide to the world.
- The limitations – where you explain what the potential shortcomings and limitations of your research may be.
- The structural outline – where you provide a high-level overview of the structure of your document
If you bake these ingredients into your dissertation introduction chapter, you’ll be well on your way to building an engaging introduction chapter that lays a rock-solid foundation for the rest of your document.
Remember, while we’ve covered the essential ingredients here, there may be some additional components that your university requires, so be sure to double-check your project brief!
Psst… there’s more (for free)
This post is part of our dissertation mini-course, which covers everything you need to get started with your dissertation, thesis or research project.
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Thanks very much for such an insight. I feel confident enough in undertaking my thesis on the survey;The future of facial recognition and learning non verbal interaction
Glad to hear that. Good luck with your thesis!
Thanks very much for such an insight. I feel confident now undertaking my thesis; The future of facial recognition and learning non verbal interaction.
Thanks so much for this article. I found myself struggling and wasting a lot of time in my thesis writing but after reading this article and watching some of your youtube videos, I now have a clear understanding of what is required for a thesis.
Thank you Derek, i find your each post so useful. Keep it up.
Thank you so much Derek ,for shedding the light and making it easier for me to handle the daunting task of academic writing .
Thanks do much Dereck for the comprehensive guide. It will assist me queit a lot in my thesis.
thanks a lot for helping
i LOVE the gifs, such a fun way to engage readers. thanks for the advice, much appreciated
Thanks a lot Derek! It will be really useful to the beginner in research!
This is a well written, easily comprehensible, simple introduction to the basics of a Research Dissertation../the need to keep the reader in mind while writing the dissertation is an important point that is covered../ I appreciate the efforts of the author../
The instruction given are perfect and clear. I was supposed to take the course , unfortunately in Nepal the service is not avaialble.However, I am much more hopeful that you will provide require documents whatever you have produced so far.
Thank you very much
Thanks so much ❤️😘 I feel am ready to start writing my research methodology
This is genuinely the most effective advice I have ever been given regarding academia. Thank you so much!
This is one of the best write up I have seen in my road to PhD thesis. regards, this write up update my knowledge of research
I was looking for some good blogs related to Education hopefully your article will help. Thanks for sharing.
This is an awesome masterpiece. It is one of the most comprehensive guides to writing a Dissertation/Thesis I have seen and read.
You just saved me from going astray in writing a Dissertation for my undergraduate studies. I could not be more grateful for such a relevant guide like this. Thank you so much.
Thank you so much Derek, this has been extremely helpful!!
I do have one question though, in the limitations part do you refer to the scope as the focus of the research on a specific industry/country/chronological period? I assume that in order to talk about whether or not the research could be generalized, the above would need to be already presented and described in the introduction.
Thank you again!
Phew! You have genuinely rescued me. I was stuck how to go about my thesis. Now l have started. Thank you.
This is the very best guide in anything that has to do with thesis or dissertation writing. The numerous blends of examples and detailed insights make it worth a read and in fact, a treasure that is worthy to be bookmarked.
Thanks a lot for this masterpiece!
Powerful insight. I can now take a step
Thank you very much for these valuable introductions to thesis chapters. I saw all your videos about writing the introduction, discussion, and conclusion chapter. Then, I am wondering if we need to explain our research limitations in all three chapters, introduction, discussion, and conclusion? Isn’t it a bit redundant? If not, could you please explain how can we write in different ways? Thank you.
Excellent!!! Thank you…
Thanks for this informative content. I have a question. The research gap is mentioned in both the introduction and literature section. I would like to know how can I demonstrate the research gap in both sections without repeating the contents?
I’m incredibly grateful for this invaluable content. I’ve been dreading compiling my postgrad thesis but breaking each chapter down into sections has made it so much easier for me to engage with the material without feeling overwhelmed. After relying on your guidance, I’m really happy with how I’ve laid out my introduction.
Thank you for the informative content you provided
Hi Derrick and Team, thank you so much for the comprehensive guide on how to write a dissertation or a thesis introduction section. For some of us first-timers, it is a daunting task. However, the instruction with relevant examples makes it clear and easy to follow through. Much appreciated.
It was so helpful. God Bless you. Thanks very much
I thank you Grad coach for your priceless help. I have two questions I have learned from your video the limitations of the research presented in chapter one. but in another video also presented in chapter five. which chapter limitation should be included? If possible, I need your answer since I am doing my thesis. how can I explain If I am asked what is my motivation for this research?
Thank you guys for the great work you are doing. Honestly, you have made the research to be interesting and simplified. Even a novice will easily grasp the ideas you put forward, Thank you once again.
I feel like just settling for a good topic is usually the hardest part.
Thank you so much. My confidence has been completely destroyed during my first year of PhD and you have helped me pull myself together again
Happy to help 🙂
I am so glad I ran into your resources and did not waste time doing the wrong this. Research is now making so much sense now.
Gratitude to Derrick and the team I was looking for a solid article that would aid me in drafting the thesis’ introduction. I felt quite happy when I came across the piece you wrote because it was so well-written and insightful. I wish you success in the future.
thank you so much. God Bless you
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Your thesis is the central claim in your essay—your main insight or idea about your source or topic. Your thesis should appear early in an academic essay, followed by a logically constructed argument that supports this central claim. A strong thesis is arguable, which means a thoughtful reader could disagree with it and therefore needs your careful analysis of the evidence to understand how you arrived at this claim. You arrive at your thesis by examining and analyzing the evidence available to you, which might be text or other types of source material.
A thesis will generally respond to an analytical question or pose a solution to a problem that you have framed for your readers (and for yourself). When you frame that question or problem for your readers, you are telling them what is at stake in your argument—why your question matters and why they should care about the answer . If you can explain to your readers why a question or problem is worth addressing, then they will understand why it’s worth reading an essay that develops your thesis—and you will understand why it’s worth writing that essay.
A strong thesis will be arguable rather than descriptive , and it will be the right scope for the essay you are writing. If your thesis is descriptive, then you will not need to convince your readers of anything—you will be naming or summarizing something your readers can already see for themselves. If your thesis is too narrow, you won’t be able to explore your topic in enough depth to say something interesting about it. If your thesis is too broad, you may not be able to support it with evidence from the available sources.
When you are writing an essay for a course assignment, you should make sure you understand what type of claim you are being asked to make. Many of your assignments will be asking you to make analytical claims , which are based on interpretation of facts, data, or sources.
Some of your assignments may ask you to make normative claims. Normative claims are claims of value or evaluation rather than fact—claims about how things should be rather than how they are. A normative claim makes the case for the importance of something, the action that should be taken, or the way the world should be. When you are asked to write a policy memo, a proposal, or an essay based on your own opinion, you will be making normative claims.
Here are some examples of possible thesis statements for a student's analysis of the article “The Case Against Perfection” by Professor Michael Sandel.
Descriptive thesis (not arguable)
While Sandel argues that pursuing perfection through genetic engineering would decrease our sense of humility, he claims that the sense of solidarity we would lose is also important.
This thesis summarizes several points in Sandel’s argument, but it does not make a claim about how we should understand his argument. A reader who read Sandel’s argument would not also need to read an essay based on this descriptive thesis.
Broad thesis (arguable, but difficult to support with evidence)
Michael Sandel’s arguments about genetic engineering do not take into consideration all the relevant issues.
This is an arguable claim because it would be possible to argue against it by saying that Michael Sandel’s arguments do take all of the relevant issues into consideration. But the claim is too broad. Because the thesis does not specify which “issues” it is focused on—or why it matters if they are considered—readers won’t know what the rest of the essay will argue, and the writer won’t know what to focus on. If there is a particular issue that Sandel does not address, then a more specific version of the thesis would include that issue—hand an explanation of why it is important.
Arguable thesis with analytical claim
While Sandel argues persuasively that our instinct to “remake” (54) ourselves into something ever more perfect is a problem, his belief that we can always draw a line between what is medically necessary and what makes us simply “better than well” (51) is less convincing.
This is an arguable analytical claim. To argue for this claim, the essay writer will need to show how evidence from the article itself points to this interpretation. It’s also a reasonable scope for a thesis because it can be supported with evidence available in the text and is neither too broad nor too narrow.
Arguable thesis with normative claim
Given Sandel’s argument against genetic enhancement, we should not allow parents to decide on using Human Growth Hormone for their children.
This thesis tells us what we should do about a particular issue discussed in Sandel’s article, but it does not tell us how we should understand Sandel’s argument.
Questions to ask about your thesis
- Is the thesis truly arguable? Does it speak to a genuine dilemma in the source, or would most readers automatically agree with it?
- Is the thesis too obvious? Again, would most or all readers agree with it without needing to see your argument?
- Is the thesis complex enough to require a whole essay's worth of argument?
- Is the thesis supportable with evidence from the text rather than with generalizations or outside research?
- Would anyone want to read a paper in which this thesis was developed? That is, can you explain what this paper is adding to our understanding of a problem, question, or topic?
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How to Write a Thesis or Dissertation Introduction
Published on 9 September 2022 by Tegan George and Shona McCombes.
The introduction is the first section of your thesis or dissertation , appearing right after the table of contents . Your introduction draws your reader in, setting the stage for your research with a clear focus, purpose, and direction.
Your introduction should include:
- Your topic, in context: what does your reader need to know to understand your thesis dissertation?
- Your focus and scope: what specific aspect of the topic will you address?
- The relevance of your research: how does your work fit into existing studies on your topic?
- Your questions and objectives: what does your research aim to find out, and how?
- An overview of your structure: what does each section contribute to the overall aim?
Table of contents
How to start your introduction, topic and context, focus and scope, relevance and importance, questions and objectives, overview of the structure, thesis introduction example, introduction checklist, frequently asked questions about introductions.
Although your introduction kicks off your dissertation, it doesn’t have to be the first thing you write – in fact, it’s often one of the very last parts to be completed (just before your abstract ).
It’s a good idea to write a rough draft of your introduction as you begin your research, to help guide you. If you wrote a research proposal , consider using this as a template, as it contains many of the same elements. However, be sure to revise your introduction throughout the writing process, making sure it matches the content of your ensuing sections.
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Begin by introducing your research topic and giving any necessary background information. It’s important to contextualise your research and generate interest. Aim to show why your topic is timely or important. You may want to mention a relevant news item, academic debate, or practical problem.
After a brief introduction to your general area of interest, narrow your focus and define the scope of your research.
You can narrow this down in many ways, such as by:
- Geographical area
- Time period
- Demographics or communities
- Themes or aspects of the topic
It’s essential to share your motivation for doing this research, as well as how it relates to existing work on your topic. Further, you should also mention what new insights you expect it will contribute.
Start by giving a brief overview of the current state of research. You should definitely cite the most relevant literature, but remember that you will conduct a more in-depth survey of relevant sources in the literature review section, so there’s no need to go too in-depth in the introduction.
Depending on your field, the importance of your research might focus on its practical application (e.g., in policy or management) or on advancing scholarly understanding of the topic (e.g., by developing theories or adding new empirical data). In many cases, it will do both.
Ultimately, your introduction should explain how your thesis or dissertation:
- Helps solve a practical or theoretical problem
- Addresses a gap in the literature
- Builds on existing research
- Proposes a new understanding of your topic
Perhaps the most important part of your introduction is your questions and objectives, as it sets up the expectations for the rest of your thesis or dissertation. How you formulate your research questions and research objectives will depend on your discipline, topic, and focus, but you should always clearly state the central aim of your research.
If your research aims to test hypotheses , you can formulate them here. Your introduction is also a good place for a conceptual framework that suggests relationships between variables .
- Conduct surveys to collect data on students’ levels of knowledge, understanding, and positive/negative perceptions of government policy.
- Determine whether attitudes to climate policy are associated with variables such as age, gender, region, and social class.
- Conduct interviews to gain qualitative insights into students’ perspectives and actions in relation to climate policy.
To help guide your reader, end your introduction with an outline of the structure of the thesis or dissertation to follow. Share a brief summary of each chapter, clearly showing how each contributes to your central aims. However, be careful to keep this overview concise: 1-2 sentences should be enough.
Human language consists of a set of vowels and consonants which are combined to form words. During the speech production process, thoughts are converted into spoken utterances to convey a message. The appropriate words and their meanings are selected in the mental lexicon (Dell & Burger, 1997). This pre-verbal message is then grammatically coded, during which a syntactic representation of the utterance is built.
Speech, language, and voice disorders affect the vocal cords, nerves, muscles, and brain structures, which result in a distorted language reception or speech production (Sataloff & Hawkshaw, 2014). The symptoms vary from adding superfluous words and taking pauses to hoarseness of the voice, depending on the type of disorder (Dodd, 2005). However, distortions of the speech may also occur as a result of a disease that seems unrelated to speech, such as multiple sclerosis or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
This study aims to determine which acoustic parameters are suitable for the automatic detection of exacerbations in patients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) by investigating which aspects of speech differ between COPD patients and healthy speakers and which aspects differ between COPD patients in exacerbation and stable COPD patients.
I have introduced my research topic in an engaging way.
I have provided necessary context to help the reader understand my topic.
I have clearly specified the focus of my research.
I have shown the relevance and importance of the dissertation topic .
I have clearly stated the problem or question that my research addresses.
I have outlined the specific objectives of the research .
I have provided an overview of the dissertation’s structure .
You've written a strong introduction for your thesis or dissertation. Use the other checklists to continue improving your dissertation.
The introduction of a research paper includes several key elements:
- A hook to catch the reader’s interest
- Relevant background on the topic
- Details of your research problem
- A thesis statement or research question
- Sometimes an outline of the paper
Don’t feel that you have to write the introduction first. The introduction is often one of the last parts of the research paper you’ll write, along with the conclusion.
This is because it can be easier to introduce your paper once you’ve already written the body ; you may not have the clearest idea of your arguments until you’ve written them, and things can change during the writing process .
Research objectives describe what you intend your research project to accomplish.
They summarise the approach and purpose of the project and help to focus your research.
Your objectives should appear in the introduction of your research paper , at the end of your problem statement .
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How to Write a Compelling Thesis Introduction
The introduction to your thesis is like a first impression: you want it to be great. It is the first chapter and appears before the literature review and after the table of contents. You want the introduction to set the stage for your reader: tell them what you’re writing about, why, and what comes next. So how can you write a compelling thesis introduction?
Structure and elements of a thesis introduction
Before you write a compelling thesis introduction, you need to know what elements belong in this section and how it should be structured. A typical thesis introduction includes:
- A clear thesis statement
- An explanation of the context (brief background) for the study
- The focus and scope of the paper
- An explanation of the relevance and importance of your research
- A description of the objectives of your research and how your methodology achieves them
- A guide to the structure of the rest of the thesis (roadmap)
A thesis introduction is typically about 10% of the total length of your paper. If your introduction includes diagrams or figures, the length may be longer. It is critical to include all of the points above when writing a clear and compelling introduction. You may include additional elements if you feel they are essential in introducing your topic to the audience.
Thesis introduction: Getting started
If you do decide to write your introduction first, you can draw on the information in your thesis/dissertation proposal to help construct your draft.
How should you draft your thesis introduction, and when should you do it?
Despite the fact that your introduction comes first in the structure of your thesis, there is absolutely no need to write it first. Starting your thesis is often difficult and overwhelming, and many writers suffer from blank page syndrome —the paralysis of not knowing where to start. For this reason, some people advocate writing a kind of placeholder introduction when you begin, just to get something written down. You are free to write the introduction section at the beginning, middle, or end of the thesis drafting process . I personally find it preferable to write the introduction to a paper after I have already drafted a significant portion of the remainder of the paper. This is because I can draw on what I have written already to make sure that I cover all of the important points above.
However, if you do decide to write your introduction first, you can draw on the information in your thesis/dissertation proposal to help construct your draft. Just keep in mind that you will need to revisit your introduction after you have written the rest of your thesis to make sure it still provides an accurate roadmap and summary of the paper for your readers.
Topic and background information
When you introduce your topic, you want to draw your reader in.
Your thesis introduction should begin by informing the reader what your topic is and providing them with some relevant background information. The amount of background information you provide in this step will actually depend on what type of thesis/dissertation you are writing.
If you are writing a paper in the natural sciences or some social sciences, then it will have a separate background section after the introduction. Not a lot of background information is needed here. You can just state the larger context of the research. However, if your paper is structured such that there is no separate background chapter, then this portion of your thesis will be a bit longer and that is okay.
When you introduce your topic, you want to draw your reader in. Provide them with the reasons your research is interesting and important so that they will want to keep reading. Don’t be afraid to offer up some surprising facts or an interesting anecdote. You don’t need to be sensationalist, but your writing does not have to be dry and boring also! It is encouraged that you try to connect to your reader by offering them a relevant fact or story about your topic.
Example (topic) Weaknesses in financial regulatory systems in the United States
Example (context): Highlight some news stories about banks allowing money laundering on a massive scale, which financed gangs and led to more street drugs in major American cities. You could include a story about someone personally impacted by drugs in their neighborhood and then connect the presence of drugs to the gangs who were allowed to launder their money through big banks.
Focus and scope of your thesis
Once you have introduced your reader to the broader topic and provided some background information, you might want to explain the specific focus and scope of your thesis.
Once you have introduced your reader to the broader topic and provided some background information, you might want to explain the specific focus and scope of your thesis. What aspect of your topic will you research in particular? Why? What will your research not cover, and why? While this second part is optional, it is often helpful to be very specific about the aims of your research.
Example : Regulatory capture in the Federal Reserve and how it contributes to lax enforcement of anti-money laundering regulations.
You might write about this by explaining that your study focuses on regulatory capture in the Federal Reserve because they are one of the primary regulatory bodies monitoring the financial institutions, which were caught allowing money laundering. You could further specify that you will be focusing specifically on the role the Federal Reserve plays in monitoring banks for compliance with anti-money laundering laws; however, you will not be talking about the role they play in monitoring for compliance in other areas such as loans or mergers. This prepares your reader for what they are going to read and sets their expectations for what will come next.
Explaining the relevance and importance of your research
You must explain to the reader why your research matters, and by implication, why your reader should continue reading!
This is one of the most critical parts of your introduction. You must explain to the reader why your research matters, and by implication, why your reader should continue reading! Your research does not have to be completely revolutionary or groundbreaking to have value. You don’t need to inflate the importance of the thesis/dissertation you are writing when explaining why the research you have done is worthwhile.
Example: Corruption is an increasingly important issue in the maintenance and promotion of democratic norms and good governance. Without the ability to enforce effective penalties against institutions that turn a blind eye to money laundering, democratic governments like the United States will be threatened by the increasing power of bad actors flouting regulations. With the dollar being the global reserve currency, the US must enforce anti-money laundering legislation at home to have any hopes of shutting down global networks of corrupt operators that rely on its financial institutions. Identifying the presence of regulatory capture in the Federal Reserve sounds the alarm bell for lawmakers and regulators and suggests important interventions for policymakers are needed.
The above example clearly explains the wider impact of the issue without making overly broad statements such as “this research will revolutionize financial regulation in the United States as we know it” or “this research provides a roadmap for ending corrupt financial flows.” Just focus on what made the issue important and interesting to you and clearly state it within the broader context you provided earlier on.
Giving your reader a roadmap
At the end of your thesis introduction, you will want to provide your reader with a roadmap to the rest of the thesis.
At the end of your thesis introduction, you will want to provide your reader with a roadmap to the rest of the thesis. This differs from your table of contents in that it provides more context and details for how and why you have structured your thesis the way you have. The format of “first, next, finally” is a clear and easy way to structure this section of your introduction.
Example: First , this study reviews the existing literature on regulatory capture and how it impacts enforcement actions, with a specific focus on financial institutions and the history of the Federal Reserve. Next , it discusses the materials used for this research and how analysis was performed. Finally , it explains the results of the data analysis and investigates what the results mean and implications for future policymaking.
Now your reader knows exactly what to expect and how this fits into your overall aims and objectives. They are primed with the knowledge of your topic, its background, its relevance, and your specific focus in this study.
One common problem people have when writing an introduction to a thesis is actually writing too much . Many students and young researchers fear they won’t have enough to say and then will find themselves with a super long introduction that they somehow need to cut in half. You don’t have to give too much detail in the introduction of your thesis! Remember, the substance of your paper is located in the chapters that follow. If you are struggling with how to cut down (or add to) your introduction, you might benefit from the help of a professional editor who can see your paper with fresh eyes and quickly help you revise it. The introduction is the first part of your thesis/dissertation that people will read, so use these tips to make sure you write a great one! Check out our site for more tips on how to write a good thesis/dissertation, where to find the best thesis editing services , and more about thesis editing and proofreading services .
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Checklist: Tips for writing a compelling thesis introduction
Remember the below points when you are writing a thesis introduction:
Know your audience
Refer to your thesis/dissertation proposal or notes
Make sure you clearly state your topic, aims, and objectives
Explain why your research matters
Try to offer interesting facts or statistics that may surprise your reader and draw their interest
Draw a roadmap of what your paper will discuss
Don’t try to write too much detail about your topic
Remember to revise your introduction as you revise other sections of your thesis
What are the typical elements in an introduction section? +
The typical elements in an introduction section are as follows:
- Thesis statement
- Brief background of the study
- The focus and scope of the article
- The relevance and importance of your research
Do I have to write my introduction first? +
You can write your introduction section whenever you feel ready. Many writers save the introduction section for last to make sure they provide a clear summary and roadmap of the content of the rest of the paper.
How long should my introduction be? +
Most introductions are about 10% of the total paper, but can be longer if they include figures or diagrams.
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- Research paper
Writing a Research Paper Introduction | Step-by-Step Guide
Published on September 24, 2022 by Jack Caulfield . Revised on March 27, 2023.
The introduction to a research paper is where you set up your topic and approach for the reader. It has several key goals:
- Present your topic and get the reader interested
- Provide background or summarize existing research
- Position your own approach
- Detail your specific research problem and problem statement
- Give an overview of the paper’s structure
The introduction looks slightly different depending on whether your paper presents the results of original empirical research or constructs an argument by engaging with a variety of sources.
Table of contents
Step 1: introduce your topic, step 2: describe the background, step 3: establish your research problem, step 4: specify your objective(s), step 5: map out your paper, research paper introduction examples, frequently asked questions about the research paper introduction.
The first job of the introduction is to tell the reader what your topic is and why it’s interesting or important. This is generally accomplished with a strong opening hook.
The hook is a striking opening sentence that clearly conveys the relevance of your topic. Think of an interesting fact or statistic, a strong statement, a question, or a brief anecdote that will get the reader wondering about your topic.
For example, the following could be an effective hook for an argumentative paper about the environmental impact of cattle farming:
A more empirical paper investigating the relationship of Instagram use with body image issues in adolescent girls might use the following hook:
Don’t feel that your hook necessarily has to be deeply impressive or creative. Clarity and relevance are still more important than catchiness. The key thing is to guide the reader into your topic and situate your ideas.
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This part of the introduction differs depending on what approach your paper is taking.
In a more argumentative paper, you’ll explore some general background here. In a more empirical paper, this is the place to review previous research and establish how yours fits in.
Argumentative paper: Background information
After you’ve caught your reader’s attention, specify a bit more, providing context and narrowing down your topic.
Provide only the most relevant background information. The introduction isn’t the place to get too in-depth; if more background is essential to your paper, it can appear in the body .
Empirical paper: Describing previous research
For a paper describing original research, you’ll instead provide an overview of the most relevant research that has already been conducted. This is a sort of miniature literature review —a sketch of the current state of research into your topic, boiled down to a few sentences.
This should be informed by genuine engagement with the literature. Your search can be less extensive than in a full literature review, but a clear sense of the relevant research is crucial to inform your own work.
Begin by establishing the kinds of research that have been done, and end with limitations or gaps in the research that you intend to respond to.
The next step is to clarify how your own research fits in and what problem it addresses.
Argumentative paper: Emphasize importance
In an argumentative research paper, you can simply state the problem you intend to discuss, and what is original or important about your argument.
Empirical paper: Relate to the literature
In an empirical research paper, try to lead into the problem on the basis of your discussion of the literature. Think in terms of these questions:
- What research gap is your work intended to fill?
- What limitations in previous work does it address?
- What contribution to knowledge does it make?
You can make the connection between your problem and the existing research using phrases like the following.
Now you’ll get into the specifics of what you intend to find out or express in your research paper.
The way you frame your research objectives varies. An argumentative paper presents a thesis statement, while an empirical paper generally poses a research question (sometimes with a hypothesis as to the answer).
Argumentative paper: Thesis statement
The thesis statement expresses the position that the rest of the paper will present evidence and arguments for. It can be presented in one or two sentences, and should state your position clearly and directly, without providing specific arguments for it at this point.
Empirical paper: Research question and hypothesis
The research question is the question you want to answer in an empirical research paper.
Present your research question clearly and directly, with a minimum of discussion at this point. The rest of the paper will be taken up with discussing and investigating this question; here you just need to express it.
A research question can be framed either directly or indirectly.
- This study set out to answer the following question: What effects does daily use of Instagram have on the prevalence of body image issues among adolescent girls?
- We investigated the effects of daily Instagram use on the prevalence of body image issues among adolescent girls.
If your research involved testing hypotheses , these should be stated along with your research question. They are usually presented in the past tense, since the hypothesis will already have been tested by the time you are writing up your paper.
For example, the following hypothesis might respond to the research question above:
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The final part of the introduction is often dedicated to a brief overview of the rest of the paper.
In a paper structured using the standard scientific “introduction, methods, results, discussion” format, this isn’t always necessary. But if your paper is structured in a less predictable way, it’s important to describe the shape of it for the reader.
If included, the overview should be concise, direct, and written in the present tense.
- This paper will first discuss several examples of survey-based research into adolescent social media use, then will go on to …
- This paper first discusses several examples of survey-based research into adolescent social media use, then goes on to …
Full examples of research paper introductions are shown in the tabs below: one for an argumentative paper, the other for an empirical paper.
- Argumentative paper
- Empirical paper
Are cows responsible for climate change? A recent study (RIVM, 2019) shows that cattle farmers account for two thirds of agricultural nitrogen emissions in the Netherlands. These emissions result from nitrogen in manure, which can degrade into ammonia and enter the atmosphere. The study’s calculations show that agriculture is the main source of nitrogen pollution, accounting for 46% of the country’s total emissions. By comparison, road traffic and households are responsible for 6.1% each, the industrial sector for 1%. While efforts are being made to mitigate these emissions, policymakers are reluctant to reckon with the scale of the problem. The approach presented here is a radical one, but commensurate with the issue. This paper argues that the Dutch government must stimulate and subsidize livestock farmers, especially cattle farmers, to transition to sustainable vegetable farming. It first establishes the inadequacy of current mitigation measures, then discusses the various advantages of the results proposed, and finally addresses potential objections to the plan on economic grounds.
The rise of social media has been accompanied by a sharp increase in the prevalence of body image issues among women and girls. This correlation has received significant academic attention: Various empirical studies have been conducted into Facebook usage among adolescent girls (Tiggermann & Slater, 2013; Meier & Gray, 2014). These studies have consistently found that the visual and interactive aspects of the platform have the greatest influence on body image issues. Despite this, highly visual social media (HVSM) such as Instagram have yet to be robustly researched. This paper sets out to address this research gap. We investigated the effects of daily Instagram use on the prevalence of body image issues among adolescent girls. It was hypothesized that daily Instagram use would be associated with an increase in body image concerns and a decrease in self-esteem ratings.
The introduction of a research paper includes several key elements:
- A hook to catch the reader’s interest
- Relevant background on the topic
- Details of your research problem
and your problem statement
- A thesis statement or research question
- Sometimes an overview of the paper
Don’t feel that you have to write the introduction first. The introduction is often one of the last parts of the research paper you’ll write, along with the conclusion.
This is because it can be easier to introduce your paper once you’ve already written the body ; you may not have the clearest idea of your arguments until you’ve written them, and things can change during the writing process .
The way you present your research problem in your introduction varies depending on the nature of your research paper . A research paper that presents a sustained argument will usually encapsulate this argument in a thesis statement .
A research paper designed to present the results of empirical research tends to present a research question that it seeks to answer. It may also include a hypothesis —a prediction that will be confirmed or disproved by your research.
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Writing A Thesis Introduction
Thesis Introduction: A Step-by-Step Guide With Examples
11 min read
Published on: Apr 11, 2019
Last updated on: Nov 11, 2023
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You're staring at a blinking cursor, trying to figure out where to start your introduction for your thesis writing.
It's hard to know where to start, and even harder to keep your introduction engaging and on-topic.
We've written this guide that will take you step-by-step through the process of writing an amazing introduction. You'll also find examples of introductions for different types of papers.
So let's get started!
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What is a Thesis Introduction?
A thesis introduction is the opening section of a research paper or thesis writing that serves as a roadmap for the entire study.
It provides context and background information for the research topic. The introduction outlines the study's purpose, problem statement, and methodology.
It engages readers, captures their interest, and sets expectations for the rest of the paper.
Importance of Writing a Good Thesis Introduction
Let’s see why a good introduction is important in thesis writing:
- First Impressions: The introduction is your first opportunity to make a positive impression on readers. It's crucial in piquing their interest.
- Contextual Understanding: It offers the necessary background information, ensuring that readers comprehend the research's significance and relevance.
- Problem Statement: The introduction presents the research problem, outlining what the study aims to address, and emphasizing its importance.
- Clarity: A well-structured introduction enhances the clarity of your work, making it easier for readers to follow your thesis.
- Guidance: It serves as a guide for the reader, providing a clear path of what to expect throughout the research, including the methodology and expected outcomes.
How Long is a Thesis Introduction?
The introduction of your thesis paper makes up roughly 10% of your total word count. Therefore, a PhD thesis paper introduction would be 8000 - 10000 words. However, a Master's thesis would be 1500 - 2000 words long.
Although the thesis introduction length can be increased if the writer includes images, diagrams, and descriptions.
Components of Thesis Introduction
The thesis introduction format comprises several essential components that collectively set the stage for your research. These components include:
- Hook or Attention-Grabber
- Background Information
- Problem Statement
- Purpose of the Study
- Significance of the Research
- Overview of the Methodology
Thesis Introduction Outline
A thesis introduction chapter structure contains the following sections:
Thesis Introduction Outline Sample
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How to Start a Thesis Introduction?
Starting a thesis introduction can be overwhelming, but there are some steps you can follow to make it easier:
- Choose a Topic Select a topic that you are passionate about and that aligns with your research interests. Your topic should also be relevant to your field of study and have enough existing research to support your thesis. You can also choose unique ideas from our compiled list of thesis topics .
- Research the Content Conduct thorough research on your topic by reviewing the literature, collecting data, and analyzing existing research in your field. This will help you identify gaps in the literature that your thesis will address.
- Organize the Ideas Organize and compile the main arguments, ideas, and claims in the next step. These thoughts will be helpful to describe and present the thesis statement . Logically organizing your thoughts is crucial for developing an effective and coherent paper. You can create a clear story from the start of your paper to the end. Also, include a table of contents at the beginning of your thesis. It serves as a mind map to discuss the layout of your research proposal .
- Define the Subject and Relevant Themes Define the subject and the relevant themes before starting your thesis introduction. The subject of a thesis is the central topic or idea that it addresses. It should be specific enough to be covered by the scope of the thesis, yet broad enough to allow for meaningful discussion. Relevant themes are those ideas that are most applicable to the subject of the thesis. These themes often come from other fields and add depth to the argument being made in the thesis. This way it would be easier for the reader to skim and get a good idea by going through it.
- Define Your Thesis Statement Once you have conducted your research, define your thesis statement. Your thesis statement should clearly articulate the main argument or point you will be making in your thesis.
Check out this video to learn more about writing a good introduction for your thesis!
How to Write a Thesis Introduction?
Once you are done with the prewriting steps discussed above, you are now ready to dive into actual writing. Here is a step-by-step guide for you to follow while writing a thesis introduction.
A detailed description of the steps to write an introduction is given below.
Step 1: Hook the Reader’s Interest
A writer should begin writing the introduction with a hook statement to draw the reader’s interest. It can be a question, quotation, or interesting transitions into your arguments. Also, make a list of interesting, current events or controversies related to your topic. It will help in creating a strong introduction and thesis statement.
Step 2: Mention the Research Gap
Review and evaluate the existing literature critically. It will help the researcher in finding and addressing the research gap.
Step 3: State the Background Information
A good introduction to the thesis always states the historical background of the chosen topic. It is usually cited in the first paragraph and shows the current position of the subject.
Step 4: Back Your Topic with Relevant Literature
The introduction is a mix of previous research and a literature review. Thus, the topic should be backed with relevant resources. It is also used to explain the context and significance of previous studies. Moreover, it further acknowledges credible sources of information to solidify your claim.
When choosing relevant literature, there are a few things to consider.
- Firstly, the literature should be from reputable sources such as scholarly journals or books.
- Secondly, it should be related to your topic and provide evidence for your claims.
- Lastly, it should be up-to-date and accurate.
By taking these factors into account, you can ensure that your work is well-informed and credible.
Step 5: Mention the Hypothesis
Formulate a hypothesis for your research work. It will discuss what you aim to achieve along with the possibilities.
A valid hypothesis must be testable, measurable, and based on evidence from existing literature or theoretical frameworks.
The hypothesis should also provide a logical explanation for the relationship between the variables in question.
Step 6: Provide Significance of Your Research
The gap will help to evaluate the situation and explain the significance of the current research. Thus, add the purpose of your paper explaining why the research is done. It will also demonstrate the possible contributions of the research work in the future.
Step 7: Outline the Research Questions
The next step is to outline your research questions. These should be relevant to the purpose of your study. Moreover, it will also help you discuss the problems that you seek to address.
Step 8: State Research Objectives
State the research aims and objectives to define the primary purpose of the work. It should give a direction to the research by providing an overview of what it aims to achieve.
Step 9: Discuss the Research Methodology
The next step is to define the terms and methodology you are going to apply in your research. It is a good technique to make your study authentic, credible, and useful.
Step 10: Finalize your Introduction
Ask yourself the following questions after finishing writing the introduction.
- Does your introduction discuss the problem your thesis is addressing?
- Does this section address the contribution the research work is making?
- Does it provide a detailed overview of your thesis?
- Does it end by briefly discussing the content of each chapter?
- Does it make a case for the research?
- Does it outline research questions, problems, and hypotheses clearly?
Thesis Introduction Examples
Below are sample thesis introductions to help you compose perfect introductions.
Ph.D. thesis introduction
Master thesis introduction example
Bachelor thesis introduction example
Thesis introduction sample for criminology
Thesis Introduction Writing Tips
The following are some writing tips to help you draft perfect thesis introductions.
- Highlight the importance of your research early on to engage the reader's interest.
- Introduce the key aspects of the topic to provide context and understanding.
- Craft a dissertation introduction that clearly sets the stage for your research.
- Offer a concise overview of the structure to help the reader navigate your thesis effectively.
- It must follow a coherent thesis format by providing concise information.
- Do not use technical language as it will leave the reader confused.
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Introduction Writing Checklist
Use the below checklist to assess your introduction and identify what information is missing. This should help you ensure that your intro has all of the necessary components for a successful outcome.
In conclusion, crafting a strong thesis introduction is a crucial element of any academic paper. It sets the tone for your entire essay and provides a roadmap for your reader to follow. By following the steps outlined in this blog post, you can create a well-structured introduction for your thesis.
However, if you are still struggling to write a compelling thesis introduction, don't worry. MyPerfectWords.com is here to help. With qualified writing experts, we provide the best thesis writing service at student-friendly costs.
So, contact us today to discuss your thesis paper, and let us help you achieve your academic goals. Using our online paper writing service , you can be confident that your thesis introduction will be crafted perfectly to help you succeed.
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How To Write A Thesis Introduction Without Effort
The first thing you will probably want to do when you start your thesis is write the introduction. Indeed, the thesis introduction is extremely important. It introduces the thesis statement, provides a bit of background information about the topic, explains a bit about your methods and results, and then makes a seamless transition to the first chapter. How long should a master’s thesis introduction be? Where is the thesis statement? Where can I get samples? Let’s talk about how you can write the best thesis introduction in the shortest time possible. Read on!
The Importance of the Thesis Introduction
So, what is a thesis introduction? Why is it so important? Should I write a thesis abstract ? To learn how to write a dissertation introduction correctly, you need to first understand its role and its importance. Here is why you need to make sure the introduction is written as best as possible:
The intro is there to provide some background information about the topic and present your thesis statement. It is also a great place to talk succinctly about other research and about the gap in knowledge that your research aims to plug. Learn how to write thesis introduction the right way if you want to get a top score on your thesis. The reality is that the evaluation committee considers the intro one of the most important parts of your academic paper. It should be perfect. The introduction is where you can hook your readers. Don’t be afraid to make a joke, share an anecdote, or be blunt about something. You want to make an impression on your readers and keep them reading.
So, Where Is the Thesis Statement Located in the Introduction?
Earlier, we mentioned the fact that you should include the thesis statement in the introduction. You probably know what a thesis statement is. If you don’t, we almost certainly have an article on our website that discusses it. To learn how to write a thesis introduction the right way, you need to know where to place the statement.
According to our seasoned academic writers, the best place to insert the statement is the end of the introductory paragraph.
The sentences that precede the thesis statement are there to introduce it. The reader needs to understand the problem before you can present your solution. Even though you may be tempted to start the introduction with a well-crafted, punchy statement, you should refrain from doing so. Place it at the end of the paragraph instead to make a transition to the Literature Review paragraph.
How Do You Write an Introduction for a Chapter in a Thesis?
Writing a thesis introduction is not very difficult. In fact, you should be able to do it all by yourself once you learn the simple process behind it. If you still need some help, keep in mind that we have some of the best thesis writers on the Internet. Our degree-holding experts can help you craft an awesome introduction for your thesis in mere hours. If you want to try it yourself, here is the process of writing a great thesis intro:
- Discuss the general topic and provide a bit of background information about it.
- Provide a literature review on the topic.
- Define the scope of the topic.
- Write a summary of the current research.
- Evaluate the summary and identify the gap in knowledge.
- Talk about how important your research can be.
- Establish the research problem.
- Establish what your research aims to achieve.
- Clearly state your hypotheses.
- Provide a short outline of the chapters of your thesis.
- Briefly discuss the methodology.
Where Can I Find an Example of Introduction in Thesis?
OK, but how do you write a good thesis introduction? It’s simple: you just follow the simple steps above. One paragraph per item should do the trick. However, we realize that some theses can be quite complicated. As such, their introductions can be somewhat difficult to write. If you are not very good at writing a dissertation introduction, you may need to get some help.
While you can find several decent examples of introductions on the Internet, we suggest you to avoid using them. You need a custom-written introduction that is 100% original. The best course of action is to get in touch with an academic writing company and get some professional help . A seasoned thesis writer will quickly help you write the best possible introduction for your paper.
Dissertation Introduction FAQ
Now that you know how to start your thesis introduction and have access to the simple steps to write an introduction thesis writers use all the time, it’s time to answer some of your questions.
How many pages should a thesis introduction be? A: An answer to this question is not easy to give. In general, the introduction should be around 10% of the word count of the thesis. If you are working on a PhD thesis, the intro will be anywhere from 8,000 to 10,000 words. In the case of a Masters thesis, you are probably looking at just 1,500 to 2,000 words.
How many pages is a Masters thesis introduction in psychology? A: On average, the Masters thesis introduction will be 3 or 4 pages long (1.5 spacing).
What’s the best way to start an introduction to a dissertation? A: There are many ways to start an introduction. However, in our writers’ experience, it seems that starting the introduction with an anecdote works great. Another thing that works is starting the thesis with something that captures your reader’s attention instantly (such as a statistic or a question).
How do you write a dissertation introduction and make it longer? A: You can make the introduction longer by incorporating the literature review into it. This means that you will present the literature in extensively in the introduction and eliminate the Literature Review chapter. It is perfectly fine to write the thesis introduction this way, don’t worry.
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How to Write the Introduction of a Dissertation – Guide & Tips
Published by Carmen Troy at August 31st, 2021 , Revised On October 10, 2023
Introducing your Dissertation Topic
What would you tell someone if they asked you to introduce yourself? You’d probably start with your name, what you do for a living…etc., etc., etc. Think of your dissertation. How would you go about it if you had to introduce it to the world for the first time?
Keep this forefront in your mind for the remainder of this guide: you are introducing your research to the world that doesn’t even know it exists. Every word, phrase and line you write in your introduction will stand for the strength of your dissertation’s character.
This is not very different from how, in real life, if someone fails to introduce themselves properly (such as leaving out what they do for a living, where they live, etc.) to a stranger, it leaves a lasting impression on the stranger.
Don’t leave your dissertation a stranger among other strangers. Let’s review the little, basic concepts we already have at the back of our minds, perhaps, to piece them together in one body: an introduction.
What Goes Inside an Introduction
The exact ingredients of a dissertation or thesis introduction chapter vary depending on your chosen research topic, your university’s guidelines, and your academic subject – but they are generally mixed in one sequence or another to introduce an academic argument.
The critical elements of an excellent dissertation introduction include a definition of the selected research topic , a reference to previous studies on the subject, a statement of the value of the subject for academic and scientific communities, a clear aim/purpose of the study, a list of your objectives, a reference to viewpoints of other researchers and a justification for the research.
Topic Discussion versus Topic Introduction
Discussing and introducing a topic are two highly different aspects of dissertation introduction writing. You might find it easy to discuss a topic, but introducing it is much trickier.
The introduction is the first thing a reader reads; thus, it must be to the point, informative, engaging, and enjoyable. Even if one of these elements is missing, the reader will not be motivated to continue reading the paper and will move on to something different.
So, it’s critical to fully understand how to write the introduction of a dissertation before starting the actual write-up.
When writing a dissertation introduction, one has to explain the title, discuss the topic and present a background so that readers understand what your research is about and what results you expect to achieve at the end of the research work.
As a standard practice, you might work on your dissertation introduction chapter several times. Once when you’re working on your proposal and the second time when writing your actual dissertation.
“ Want to keep up with the progress of the work done by your writer? Research Prospect can deliver your dissertation order in three parts; outline, first half, and final dissertation delivery. Here is the link to our online order form .
Many academics argue that the Introduction chapter should be the last section of the dissertation paper you should complete, but by no means is it the last part you would think of because this is where your research starts from.
Write the draft introduction as early as possible. You should write it at the same time as the proposal submission, although you must revise and edit it many times before it takes the final shape.
Considering its importance, many students remain unsure of how to write the introduction of a dissertation. Here are some of the essential elements of how to write the introduction of a dissertation that’ll provide much-needed dissertation introduction writing help.
Below are some guidelines for you to learn to write a flawless first-class dissertation paper.
Steps of Writing a Dissertation Introduction
1. research background – writing a dissertation introduction.
This is the very first section of your introduction. Building a background of your chosen topic will help you understand more about the topic and help readers know why the general research area is problematic, interesting, central, important, etc.
Your research background should include significant concepts related to your dissertation topic. This will give your supervisor and markers an idea that you’ve investigated the research problem thoroughly and know the various aspects of your topic.
The introduction to a dissertation shouldn’t talk only about other research work in the same area, as this will be discussed in the literature review section. Moreover, this section should not include the research design and data collection method(s) .
All about research strategy should be covered in the methodology chapter . Research background only helps to build up your research in general.
For instance, if your research is based on job satisfaction measures of a specific country, the content of the introduction chapter will generally be about job satisfaction and its impact.
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2. Significance of the Research
As a researcher, you must demonstrate how your research will provide value to the scientific and academic communities. If your dissertation is based on a specific company or industry, you need to explain why that industry and company were chosen.
If you’re comparing, explain why you’re doing so and what this research will yield. Regardless of your chosen research topic, explain thoroughly in this section why this research is being conducted and what benefits it will serve.
The idea here is to convince your supervisor and readers that the concept should be researched to find a solution to a problem.
3. Research Problem
Once you’ve described the main research problem and the importance of your research, the next step would be to present your problem statement , i.e., why this research is being conducted and its purpose.
This is one of the essential aspects of writing a dissertation’s introduction. Doing so will help your readers understand what you intend to do in this research and what they should expect from this study.
Presenting the research problem competently is crucial in persuading your readers to read other parts of the dissertation paper . This research problem is the crux of your dissertation, i.e., it gives a direction as to why this research is being carried out, and what issues the study will consider.
For example, if your dissertation is based on measuring the job satisfaction of a specific organisation, your research problem should talk about the problem the company is facing and how your research will help the company to solve that.
If your dissertation is not based on any specific organisation, you can explain the common issues that companies face when they do not consider job satisfaction as a pillar of business growth and elaborate on how your research will help them realise its importance.
Citing too many references in the introduction chapter isn’t recommended because here, you must explain why you chose to study a specific area and what your research will accomplish. Any citations only set the context, and you should leave the bulk of the literature for a later section.
4. Research Question(s)
The central part of your introduction is the research question , which should be based on your research problem and the dissertation title. Combining these two aspects will help you formulate an exciting yet manageable research question.
Your research question is what your research aims to answer and around which your dissertation will revolve. The research question should be specific and concise.
It should be a one- or two-line question you’ve set out to answer through your dissertation. For the job satisfaction example, a sample research question could be, how does job satisfaction positively impact employee performance?
Look up dissertation introduction examples online or ask your friends to get an idea of how an ideal research question is formed. Or you can review our dissertation introduction example here and research question examples here .
Once you’ve formed your research question, pick out vital elements from it, based on which you will then prepare your theoretical framework and literature review. You will come back to your research question again when concluding your dissertation .
Sometimes, you might have to formulate a hypothesis in place of a research question. The hypothesis is a simple statement you prove with your results , discussion and analysis .
A sample hypothesis could be job satisfaction is positively linked to employee job performance . The results of your dissertation could be in favour of this dissertation or against it.
Tip: Read up about what alternative, null, one-tailed and two-tailed hypotheses are so you can better formulate the hypothesis for your dissertation. Following are the definitions for each term, as retrieved from Trochim et al.’s Research Methods: The Essential Knowledge Base (2016):
- Alternative hypothesis (H 1 ): “A specific statement of prediction that usually states what you expect will happen in your study.”
- Null hypothesis (H 0 ): “The hypothesis that describes the possible outcomes other than the alternative hypothesis. Usually, the null hypothesis predicts there will be no effect of a program or treatment you are studying.”
- One-tailed hypothesis: “A hypothesis that specifies a direction; for example, when your hypothesis predicts that your program will increase the outcome.”
- Two-tailed hypothesis: “A hypothesis that does not specify a direction. For example, if you hypothesise that your program or intervention will affect an outcome, but you are unwilling to specify whether that effect will be positive or negative, you are using a two-tailed hypothesis.”
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Interesting read: 10 ways to write a practical introduction fast .
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Uk’s best academic support services. how would you know until you try, 5. research aims and objectives.
Next, the research aims and objectives. Aims and objectives are broad statements of desired results of your dissertation . They reflect the expectations of the topic and research and address the long-term project outcomes.
These statements should use the concepts accurately, must be focused, should be able to convey your research intentions and serve as steps that communicate how your research question will be answered.
You should formulate your aims and objectives based on your topic, research question, or hypothesis. These are simple statements and are an extension of your research question.
Through the aims and objectives, you communicate to your readers what aspects of research you’ve considered and how you intend to answer your research question.
Usually, these statements initiate with words like ‘to explore’, ‘to study’, ‘to assess’, ‘to critically assess’, ‘to understand’, ‘to evaluate’ etc.
You could ask your supervisor to provide some thesis introduction examples to help you understand better how aims and objectives are formulated. More examples are here .
Your aims and objectives should be interrelated and connect to your research question and problem. If they do not, they’ll be considered vague and too broad in scope.
Always ensure your research aims and objectives are concise, brief, and relevant.
Once you conclude your dissertation , you will have to revert back to address whether your research aims and objectives have been met.
You will have to reflect on how your dissertation’s findings , analysis, and discussion related to your aims and objectives and how your research has helped in achieving them.
6. Research Limitations
This section is sometimes a part of the dissertation methodology section ; however, it is usually included in the introduction of a dissertation.
Every research has some limitations. Thus, it is normal for you to experience certain limitations when conducting your study.
You could experience research design limitations, data limitations or even financial limitations. Regardless of which type of limitation you may experience, your dissertation would be impacted. Thus, it would be best if you mentioned them without any hesitation.
When including this section in the introduction, make sure that you clearly state the type of constraint you experienced. This will help your supervisor understand what problems you went through while working on your dissertation.
However, one aspect that you should take care of is that your results, in no way, should be influenced by these restrictions. The results should not be compromised, or your dissertation will not be deemed authentic and reliable.
After you’ve mentioned your research limitations, discuss how you overcame them to produce a perfect dissertation .
Also, mention that your limitations do not adversely impact your results and that you’ve produced research with accurate results the academic community can rely on.
Also read: How to Write Dissertation Methodology .
7. Outline of the Dissertation
Even though this isn’t a mandatory sub-section of the introduction chapter, good introductory chapters in dissertations outline what’s to follow in the preceding chapters.
It is also usual to set out an outline of the rest of the dissertation . Depending on your university and academic subject, you might also be asked to include it in your research proposal .
Because your tutor might want to glance over it to see how you plan your dissertation and what sections you’d include; based on what sections you include and how you intend to research and cover them, they’d provide feedback for you to improve.
Usually, this section discusses what sections you plan to include and what concepts and aspects each section entails. A standard dissertation consists of five sections : chapters, introduction, literature review , methodology , results and discussion , and conclusion .
Some dissertation assignments do not use the same chapter for results and discussion. Instead, they split it into two different chapters, making six chapters. Check with your supervisor regarding which format you should follow.
When discussing the outline of your dissertation , remember that you’d have to mention what each section involves. Discuss all the significant aspects of each section to give a brief overview of what your dissertation contains, and this is precisely what our dissertation outline service provides.
Writing a dissertation introduction might seem complicated, but it is not if you understand what is expected of you. To understand the required elements and make sure that you focus on all of them.
Include all the aspects to ensure your supervisor and other readers can easily understand how you intend to undertake your research.
“If you find yourself stuck at any stage of your dissertation introduction, get introduction writing help from our writers! At Research Prospect, we offer a dissertation writing service , and our qualified team of writers will also assist you in conducting in-depth research for your dissertation.
Dissertation Introduction Samples & Examples
Check out some basic samples of dissertation introduction chapters to get started.
FAQs about Dissertation Introduction
What is the purpose of an introduction chapter.
It’s used to introduce key constructs, ideas, models and/or theories etc. relating to the topic; things that you will be basing the remainder of your dissertation on.
How do you start an introduction in a dissertation?
There is more than one way of starting a dissertation’s introductory chapter. You can begin by stating a problem in your area of interest, review relevant literature, identify the gap, and introduce your topic. Or, you can go the opposite way, too. It’s all entirely up to your discretion. However, be consistent in the format you choose to write in.
How long can an introduction get?
It can range from 1000 to 2000 words for a master’s dissertation , but for a higher-level dissertation, it mostly ranges from 8,000 to 10,000 words ’ introduction chapter. In the end, though, it depends on the guidelines provided to you by your department.
Steps to Writing a Dissertation Introduction
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How to write a thesis introduction
The fundamental question of how to write a thesis introduction that leaves the reader curious and excited to find out more and keep on reading is one of the most challenging and overwhelming tasks for all thesis writing students. When you start to work on your thesis opening, you should have a clear idea of what goes into it, how to structure it and how to make a good first impression. If you struggle to formulate the crucial initial words, this post will help you. Even if there is no recipe for h ow to write a thesis introduction for every topic, the following key issues and tips will enable you to craft yours.
How to write a thesis introduction for your dissertation
Your introduction is a key section that needs special attention! Representing the opening part of your thesis, it is the point of start for your reader, indicating the direction which your work will take, presenting your thesis statement, arguments, and making him understand your ideas in a concise way , in order to showcase your writing skills. Fulfilling such an important function, you need to know, how to write a thesis introduction that is simply perfect.
Your approach: How to write a thesis introduction for chapter 1
The first chapter is the right and only place for your initial words. Your goal is not only to introduce your research to the reader, but far behind : Addressing also the main key points and sections of your dissertation, such as the Literature review, scientific method, and relevance of your topic and writing, it´s your opportunity to leave a brilliant first impression and catch the interest.
If you struggle to find initial words, or to structure your opening section and still don´t know, how to start a dissertation introduction, start to work out yours by completing the following steps and stages :
- 1 – Start with a presentation of the general topic and provide some background information.
- 2 – Continue with a short overview of the actual literature related to the topic (briefly! keep the extension for your literature review).
- 3 – Introduce the principal idea and name the scope of the topic. outline the current state of research & evaluate the situation and arrive at the gap.
- 4 – Include a topic-comment, that showcases and clearly explains the relevance and importance.
- 5 – Name your research question, and formulate aims & objectives.
- 6 – Condense and place your thesis statement & arguments (if you like to know, how to write a thesis statement in an introduction paragraph and how to introduce a thesis statement in the best manner, consult my related post).
- 7 – Provide a brief description, that explains your methodological approach.
- 8 – Finish the introduction by outlining the structure of your dissertation.
How to write a thesis introduction that is well-structured
Writing a strong introduction means providing a condensed outline and definition of the principal sections which make up your dissertation. When you think about how to write a thesis introduction, be pragmatic: Open with some words on the topic introduction and provide readers with background information . Show the reader, why the subject is important the topic is worth and the relevant topic to be discussed. Your paragraphs should follow a logical structure, leading from one point to the next, until arriving at the main arguments and contribution.
How to highlight your research question & its relevance
To explain the famous “So what” and “Why does it matter” that motivated you for this specific research, introduce some hard facts: Present a brief overview of your studies’ contextual background and current state of research, founded by citing relevant sources.
Caution: Only the relevant! Don´t stuff the section, there is plenty of time for a detailed view of all sources in the literature review of your manuscript.
Write a dissertation introduction with the right length
Referring to the question of how to write a thesis introduction with adequate length, please consider, that there is no precise formula or required number of sentences or paragraphs. Try to cover all the essential points and leave all additional and unnecessary information out. Don´t overstuff the section or squeeze all points and arguments into one page. Instead, consider an extension of about five to seven pages (at least a 10% of your thesis).
Secrets to open your thesis in a brilliant way
1 – To make your dissertation an outstanding one from the very beginning, surprise your reader by including some particular and unexpected details: Introduce a unique point of view, drop some curious, special facts or surprising perspectives. I collected some further key points, which are also indicated by the Harvard University (to give you examples of how to write a good thesis introduction:
- 2 – Keep your writing short and concise.
- 3 – Check and present the best examples.
- 4 – Don’t make use of (too) specific vocabulary.
- 5 – Outline the principal key points, keep the highlights for the central body.
- 6 – Choose the right verb tense: use the present tense to state your topic, reserve the past tense for a description of the background and context.
- 7 – Avoid including a lot of quotation (this goes specially for direct quotes).
In a nutshell, the secret of how to write a thesis introduction, that will get your reader excited and interested is not an easy one, even if the components are clear. In fact, it´s a process, that requires addressing your research question and problem concisely, from different angles, and making decisions. To get to know how to start in a practical way, consult the related samples section from how to write a good thesis introduction: examples, and collect ideas to get yours done!
Frequently Asked Questions on how to write a thesis introduction
In a nutshell, the secret and best way of how to write a thesis introduction, that will get your reader excited and interested is not an easy one, even if the components are clear. In fact, it´s a process, that requires addressing your research question and problem concisely, from different angles, and making decisions. To get to know how to start a practical way, consult the related samples section from how to write a good thesis introduction: examples, and collect ideas to get yours done!
Introduce your topic, research question, and main sections/chapters of your thesis in a condensed way. Before you start writing, get a clear idea of the structure, crystallize your main arguments, and clear the contribution that your thesis will make.
The overall structure of a Ph.D. thesis introduction is very similar to an introduction for a Master´s thesis. Even though it should be a way more elaborated and the paragraphs provided with more depth and detail (extension).
Surprise your reader! That’s key if you want to keep him interested! Above the official requirements which are demanded such as a certain structure and a brief layout of your conception, the brilliance is to go behind the common expectation. Add some interesting, curious details, surprise your reader and get him excited to continue reading.
First of all, follow the steps which are provided above. Start to introduce your topic smoothly, provide some contextual background information, get over to the current state and figure out, which the gap is. Then, make clear, why it matters (research question & contribution), how you aim to approach it (methodologically) and close with a brief overview of your thesis structure.
Don´t try to squeeze all the information into one page, but avoid extending it by adding unnecessary details. There is no general rule for the length, but the expectation is around two to three pages.
There are a lot of examples provided in research papers and publications, you can also consult the section on concrete examples which is related to this post!
About the author:
Possibly you already heard of me through different media channels. My name is Dr. Friederike Jurth , and since 2010 I give lectures on Methodology, Empirical Research, Anthropology, and Transcultural (Music) Studies in collaboration with universities in the United States, Germany, Spain, and Brazil. In 2010 I started to carry out 7-year-long fieldwork in Rio de Janeiro and to present my research at conferences all around the world, such as in Japan, the United States, Australia, Brazil, Thailand, Switzerland, and many others. In addition, I worked as a lecturer and researcher with Germany’s famous UNESCO Chair.
After finalizing my doctoral dissertation with summa cum laude , it became my aim to unite, condense and share the steps, ways and details of my unique methodological and structural approach that I could develop and elaborate during my Ph.D. and that finally helped me to achieve this result. By concentrating and putting them together to an elaborated academic conception, MyThesis Academy was born. Motivated by the only aim and objective to help my students through all steps and stages of their thesis journey, it enables them to achieve their best possible result in shortest time, independent of their specific area of research.
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How To Write A Thesis Introduction Chapter
Crafting the introductory chapter of a thesis can be confusing. If you are feeling the same, you are the at right place.
This post will explore how you can write a thesis introduction chapter, by outlining the essential components of a thesis introduction. We will look at the process, one section at a time, and explain them to help you get a hang of how to craft your thesis introduction.
How To Write A Good Thesis Introduction?
The opening section of a thesis introduction sets the stage for what’s to come, acting as a crucial hook to capture the reader’s attention.
Unlike the broader strokes found in the table of contents, this initial foray into your research is where you must distill the essence of your thesis into a potent, digestible form.
A skillful introduction begins with a concise preview of the chapter’s terrain, delineating the structure of the thesis with a clarity that avoids overwhelming the reader.
This is not the stage for exhaustive details; rather, it’s where you prime the reader with a snapshot of the intellectual journey ahead.
In crafting this segment, insiders advise adhering to a quartet of foundational sentences that offer an academic handshake to the reader.
First Section: I ntroduces the broad field of research, such as the significance of organisational skills development in business growth.
Second Section: Narrows the focus, pinpointing a specific research problem or gap — perhaps the debate on managing skill development in fast-paced industries like web development.
Third Section: Clearly state the research aims and objectives, guiding the reader to the ‘why’ behind your study. Finally, a sentence should outline the roadmap of the introduction chapter itself, forecasting the background context, research questions, significance, and limitations that will follow.
Such a calibrated approach ensures that every element from the research objective to the hypothesis is presented with precision.
This method, a well-guarded secret amongst seasoned researchers, transforms a mundane introduction into a compelling entrée into your dissertation or thesis.
Background To The Study
This section sets the tone for the research journey ahead. The goal here is to capture the reader’s attention by threading relevant background information into a coherent narrative that aligns with the research objectives of the thesis.
To write a good thesis introduction, one must carefully describe the background to highlight the context in which the research is grounded.
This involves not just a literature review but a strategic presentation of the current state of research, pinpointing where your work will wedge itself into the existing body of knowledge.
For instance, if the research project focuses on qualitative changes in urban planning, the introduction should spotlight key developmental milestones and policy shifts that foreground the study’s aims and objectives.
When writing this section, articulate the focus and scope of the research, ensuring the reader grasps the importance of the research questions and hypothesis.
This section must not only be informative but also engaging. By the end of the introductory chapter, the reader should be compelled to continue reading, having grasped a clear and easy-to-understand summary of each chapter that will follow.
It’s a good idea to address frequently asked questions and to clearly state any industry-specific terminology, assuming no prior expertise on the reader’s part.
This approach establishes a solid foundation for the rest of the thesis or dissertation, ensuring the reader is well-prepared to dive into the nuances of your research project.
Crafting the nucleus of your thesis or dissertation hinges on pinpointing a compelling research problem. This step is crucial; it is the keystone of a good thesis introduction chapter, drawing the reader’s attention and setting the stage for the rest of your thesis.
A well-defined research problem addresses a gap in the existing literature, underscored by a qualitative or quantitative body of research that lacks consensus or is outdated, especially in rapidly evolving fields.
Consider the dynamic sphere of organizational skills development. Established research might agree on strategies for industries where skills change at a snail’s pace.
However, if the landscape shifts more quickly—take web development for example, where new languages and platforms emerge incessantly—the literature gap becomes evident.
Herein lies the research problem: existing strategies may not suffice in industries characterized by a swift knowledge turnover.
When writing your introduction, your goal is to clearly state this gap. A great thesis introduction delineates what is known, what remains unknown, and why bridging this chasm is significant.
It should illuminate the research objectives and questions, laying out a roadmap for the reader in a language that’s clear and easy to understand, regardless of their familiarity with the topic.
You’ll be able to capture and maintain the reader’s interest by effectively communicating why your research matters—setting the scene for your hypothesis and subsequent investigation.
Remember, a good thesis introduction should not only provide background information but also articulate the focus and scope of the study, offering a preview of the structure of your thesis.
Research Aims, Objectives And Questions
This pivotal section lays out the foundation by providing relevant background information, but it is the articulation of research aims, objectives, and questions that clarifies the focus and scope of your study.
The research aim is the lighthouse of your thesis, illuminating the overarching purpose of your investigation.
For instance, a thesis exploring skills development in fast-paced industries might present an aim to evaluate the effectiveness of various strategies within UK web development companies. This broad goal sets the direction for more detailed planning.
Research objectives drill down into specifics, acting as stepping stones toward achieving your aim. They are the tangible checkpoints of your research project, often action-oriented, outlining what you will do.
Examples might include identifying common skills development strategies or evaluating their effectiveness. These objectives segment the monumental task into manageable portions, offering a clear and easy way to write a structured pathway for the research.
Equally critical are the research questions, which translate your objectives into inquiries that your thesis will answer. They narrow the focus even further, dictating the structure of the thesis.
- “What are the prevalent skills development strategies employed by UK web development firms?”
- “How effective are these strategies?”
Such questions demand concrete responses and guide the reader through the rest of the thesis.
Significance Of The Study
The “Significance of the Study” section within the introduction chapter of your thesis or dissertation holds considerable weight in laying out the importance of your research.
This segment answers the pivotal question: “Why does this research matter?” It is strategically placed after the background information and literature review to underscore the contribution your study makes to the existing body of research.
In writing this section, you’ll be able to capture the reader’s attention by clearly stating the impact and added value your research project offers.
Whether it’s a qualitative or quantitative study, the significance must be articulated in terms of:
- Academic, and
- Societal contributions.
For instance, it may fill gaps identified in the literature review, propose innovative solutions to pressing problems, or advance our understanding in a certain field.
A good thesis introduction will succinctly convey three main things: the research objective, the hypothesis or research questions, and the importance of your research.
It’s a good idea to provide your reader with a roadmap, foreshadowing the structure of the thesis and offering a summary of each chapter, thus enticing the reader to continue reading.
When you write the introduction section, it should also serve as a concise synopsis of the focus and scope of your research.
It’s often beneficial to include examples of introductions that clearly state the research objectives and questions, offering a snapshot of the whole thesis, and setting the stage for the rest of your thesis.
Limitations Of The Study
A thorough thesis introduction lays out specific research objectives and questions, yet it also sheds light on the study’s inherent boundaries. This is the purpose of the Limitation of The Study section.
The limitations section is not a confession of failure; instead, it’s a good idea to see it as demonstrating academic maturity.
Here, you clearly state the parameters within which the research was conducted.
For instance, a qualitative study might face scrutiny for subjectivity, or a quantitative one for potentially oversimplifying complexities. Other common constraints include the scope—perhaps focusing on a narrow aspect without considering variable interplay—resources, and generalizability.
For example, a study concentrated on a specific industry in Florida may not hold water in a different context, for example in Tokyo, Japan.
It’s essential to write this section with transparency. A good thesis introduction doesn’t shy away from limitations. Instead, it captures the reader’s attention by laying them out systematically, often in a dedicated paragraph for each chapter.
This honesty allows the reader to understand the research’s focus and scope while providing a clear and easy-to-follow structure of the thesis.
This approach also serves to manage the reader’s expectations. By preempting frequently asked questions about the scope of your research, the introductory chapter establishes a trust that encourages the reader to continue reading, aware of the contours shaping the body of research.
Thus, a well-articulated limitations section is not just part of the thesis; it is an integral piece of a responsibly woven research narrative.
Structural Outline Of Thesis, Thesis Statement
Within the thesis or dissertation, the structural outline section is akin to a compass, orienting the reader’s journey through the academic landscape laid out within the pages.
Crafting this section is a strategic exercise, one that requires an understanding of the work’s skeleton.
In essence, it’s the blueprint for the construction of a scholarly argument, and writing a good thesis necessitates a clear and easy-to-follow outline.
When you write a thesis outline, it’s not only about catching the reader’s attention; it’s also about holding it throughout the rest of the thesis.
This is where the structural outline comes into play, often beginning with an introduction chapter that presents the thesis statement, research objectives, and the importance of your research.
Following the introduction, a typical outline might proceed with Chapter 2, offering a literature review to acquaint the reader with existing literature and how this piece of research fits within it.
Subsequent chapters, each with a paragraph in the outline, detail the methodological approach—whether it’s qualitative or quantitative—and the research’s focus and scope.
A well-thought-out outline should also preview the structure of the thesis, succinctly:
- Summarizing the main aim and objectives of each chapter, and
- Indicating the type of data and analysis that will be presented.
This roadmap reassures the reader that the dissertation or thesis will cover the necessary ground in a logical progression, continuing from where the introduction first captivated their interest.
The structural outline is not only part of the thesis—it’s a strategic framework that informs the reader what to expect in each subsequent chapter.
Done correctly, this section allows the reader to understand the whole thesis in a nutshell and can often serve as a checklist for both the reader and the writer.
This ensures that the key stages of the research project are clearly stated and that the reader is provided with a roadmap to guide them through the detailed landscape of your scholarly work.
Write An Introduction Chapter With Ease
Mastering the thesis introduction chapter is a critical step towards a successful dissertation. It’s about striking a balance between engagement and information, presenting a snapshot of your research with clarity and intrigue.
Remember to start with a hook, establish the context, clarify your aims, and highlight the significance, all while being mindful of the study’s scope and limitations.
By adhering to these principles, your introduction will not only guide but also inspire your readers, laying a strong foundation for the in-depth exploration that follows in your thesis or dissertation.
Dr Andrew Stapleton has a Masters and PhD in Chemistry from the UK and Australia. He has many years of research experience and has worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow and Associate at a number of Universities. Although having secured funding for his own research, he left academia to help others with his YouTube channel all about the inner workings of academia and how to make it work for you.
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Writing a Thesis Introduction Like a Pro - Steps & Examples
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Published on: Oct 22, 2021
Last updated on: Jul 21, 2023
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Are you struggling with writing an engaging thesis introduction that grabs the attention of your readers?
Do you find yourself unsure of how to effectively introduce your research topic and present its significance?
Look no further!
In this blog, we will go through the complete process of writing the best thesis introduction.
We will also provide examples of some engaging thesis introductions along with expert tips to hook the reader's attention.
So, let's get started!
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What is a Thesis Introduction?
Writing an introduction for a thesis is one of the most important parts of writing. It sets the stage and direction for your work, and helps you stay focused on whatâs at hand. In addition, it can be used as reference points throughout your research process.
The first chapter in any thesis document starts with an introductory paragraph that narrows down broad subject matter into more specific.
Thesis introductions are usually found after the table of contents page and give a broader research context. Remember that a good opening is essential for capturing the reader's interest.
Components of a Good Thesis Introduction
The following are the important thesis introduction parts that must be covered.
- Topic and Context - What information should a reader have to grasp the thesis?
- Scope and Focus - Which elements of the topic will be covered? It might be research gaps, queries, or issues.
- Importance and Relevance - How your research work will contribute to the existing work on the same topic?
- Objectives and Questions - What are the major research aims and objectives the and how they will be achieved?
- Structure Overview - How will each chapter of the thesis contribute to the overarching goals?
How Long Should a Thesis Introduction be?
Your introduction is 10% of your paper which makes it the most important part. The PhD. thesis introduction should be between 8000 to 10000 words long. On the other hand, a Masters thesis introduction word count should be between 1500 to 2000.
However, the thesis introduction length might be extended if the writer incorporates photos, diagrams, and explanations.
Thesis Introduction Outline
The format of a thesis introduction chapter outline is as follows.
Take a look at the template below to get a sense of how the thesis introduction structure should be.
Thesis Introduction Outline Sample
How to Start a Thesis Introduction?
To begin a thesis introduction appropriately, follow the given steps
To write a successful paper, you must first identify an interesting topic that will keep readers engaged. Second, your introduction should be clear so they can understand what's going on between the text lines.
Brainstorm various thoughts and facts relating to your topic. Then, go through prior literature on the subject to thoroughly research it to grasp that concept or idea.
Choose the type of paper you are most comfortable using in your writing process. Keep in mind that the content should never be written in the first person.
Also, avoid including unnecessary details and be exact by utilizing correct language and grammar. When writing a thesis, using powerful phrases can assist you in defining the study objectives.
It is preferable to be aware of the audience to whom you are speaking. Similarly, work approaches, procedures, and literature should be introduced in accordance with your target audience.
In the following stage, organize and assemble the major arguments, concepts, and claims. A good idea will be useful in describing and presenting the thesis statement in the introduction.
Before beginning your thesis introduction, define the subject and the relevant themes. Going through it would make it easy for the reader to understand and get a decent idea of your topic.
How to Write a Thesis Introduction?
Here is a step-by-step guide to help you write a thesis introduction.
These steps of writing an introduction are discussed below in detail.
1. Capture the Readerâs Attention
A writer should begin the introduction with a hook sentence to draw the reader's attention. It can start with a quote, question, or an interesting transition into your argument.
Make a list of intriguing, present issues or events that are connected to your theme as well. It will assist in the development of a good opening and thesis statement .
2. Determine the Research Gap
Examine and evaluate the available literature. It will assist you in identifying and filling the research gaps.
3. Provide Background Information
An excellent thesis beginning always provides the historical context of the selected topic. It is generally referenced in the opening paragraph and illustrates the subject's present status.
4. Use Relevant Literature to Back Up Your Topic
The introduction combines previous research and the literature review. As a result, the topic should be backed up by relevant resources.
It's also used to explain the context and significance of previous research. It also acknowledges credible sources of information to back up your argument.
You can also check out this video for a better understanding:
5. Specify the Hypothesis
Create a hypothesis for your research paper . It will go through your goals as well as the options available to you.
6. Explain the Importance of Your Research
The gap will assist in assessing the situation and explaining the relevance of the current research.
Thus, provide your paper's goal, which explains why the study was conducted. It will also show the potential future contributions of the study work.
7. Outline the Research Questions
The next step is to compose an outline of your research questions. These should be relevant to the goal of your research. It will also aid you in discussing the issues you wish to address.
8. State Your Research Goals
To identify the fundamental purpose of the work, state the research goals and objectives. It should provide direction for the research by offering an outline of what it hopes to achieve.
9. Make an Outline
Make a well-structured outline to organize and assemble your ideas. Include a table of contents at the start of your dissertation as well. It could be used as a mind map to talk about the structure of your thesis proposal.
10. Examine the Research Methodology
In this stage, you have to identify and define the terms and methods you will use in your study. It is an effective method for making your research authentic, trustworthy, and valuable.
11. Complete Your Introduction
After you've finished writing the introduction, ask yourself the following questions.
- Is your introduction concerned with the issue that your thesis seeks to address?
- Does it make a case for the study?
- Is this part concerned with the research's contribution?
- Is it a thorough review of your thesis?
- Is it precise in defining research topics, issues, and hypotheses?
- Does it end by briefly addressing the topic of each chapter?
Take a look at this example and get a better understanding of writing the thesis introduction.
How to Write a Good Thesis Introduction
Thesis Introduction Examples
The following are examples of an introductory thesis paragraph to assist you in writing effective introductions.
Thesis Introduction Sample
School Canteen Thesis Introduction
Study Habits Thesis Introduction
PhD Thesis Introduction
Master Thesis Introduction Example
Bachelor Thesis Introduction Example
Thesis Defense Introduction Speech Sample
Thesis Chapter 1 Introduction Example
Thesis Introduction About Working Students Example
Useful Tips for Writing a Thesis Introduction
Here are some useful writing tips for writing a great thesis introduction.
Identify and Specify Research Parameters:
- Define the Research Scope and Boundaries
- Set Research Parameters in the Introduction
Provide Adequate Information to Back Up Claims:
- Support Claims with Relevant Information
- Present Evidence in the Introduction
Compose a Strong Introduction to Establish Scope and Goal:
- Establish the Scope and Goal of the Work in the Introduction
- Craft a Compelling Opening to Set the Tone and Direction
Solid Opening to Establish Scope and Aim:
- Establish the Scope and Aim of the Work in the Opening
- Create a Strong Opening Statement for the Introduction
Establishing Topic, Terms, and Scope:
- Establish the Context and Parameters of the Research
- Define the Topic, Terms, and Scope in the Introduction
Background Information for a Strong Foundation:
- Provide Background Information
- Establish a Solid Foundation with Background Details
Creating a Niche and Restricting Assertions:
- Establish a Niche and Limiting Assertions in the Introduction
- Create a Focused Framework for the Thesis in the Introduction
Guiding Future Research with Methodology:
- Indicate the Methodology for Future Research in the Introduction
- Guide Future Research with the Introduction's Methodological Overview
Overview of Present Research: Hypothesis, Questions, Aims:
- Present the Research Overview in the Introduction
- Introduce Hypotheses , Research Questions, and Aims in the Introduction
Unique and Plagiarism-Free Content:
- Ensure Unique and Original Content
- Maintain Academic Integrity with Plagiarism-Free Introduction
Consistent Thesis Format with Clear Facts:
- Adhere to a Consistent Thesis Format
- Present Clear Facts with a Consistent Format in the Introduction
Avoiding Technical Terms and Confusing Language:
- Write in Clear Language, Avoiding Technical Terms
- Maintain Clarity by Avoiding Confusing Language in the Introduction
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How to Write an Introduction for a Dissertation or Thesis: Guide & Examples
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A dissertation introduction is the opening chapter of a doctoral-level research project, which serves as an overview of the entire study. The purpose of the introduction chapter is to provide readers the context, objectives and scope of research.
When writing a dissertation intriduction, you should cover the following aspects:
- Problem statement and research questions
- Review of relevant literature
- Research methodology
- Significance of the study.
A good introduction is essential to engage readers by convincing them regarding your credibility and authority on the topic. That's why you should clearly know how to structure an introduction for thesis or dissertation.
In this guide by the best dissertation writing service , we will review how to write a dissertation introduction and make it outstanding. To reinforce your grasp of ideas, dissertation and thesis introduction examples will also be provided.
What Is a Dissertation Introduction?
A dissertation introduction is your first point of departure for a project. Here, you should describe the research topic, offer an overview of your work briefly, and keep readers interested in your study. It usually goes right after your thesis table of contents . An introduction to a dissertation directs your audience from the general focus areas to a specific inquiry issue. It highlights the scope, context, and importance of a study by including a summary of the current and background knowledge about your subject, research problem, study question/hypothesis, methodological approaches utilized, potential results, and thesis organization or structure. Further in this blog, we will tell you all ins and outs of composing an introduction chapter for both thesis and dissertation. The writing process is identical for these 2 types of works. However, if you want to know the difference between a thesis and a dissertation , visit our guide.
What Makes a Good Dissertation Introduction?
Use the following strategies to write an effective introduction of a dissertation or thesis:
- Write this section last to craft a good beginning because you will have a well-rounded idea about your arguments.
- You can also compose a draft of this part. If you do this, ensure to return later and revise accordingly.
- Consider a question you want to answer because your whole report will be responding to this issue. It’s the first step towards the dissertation or thesis introduction.
- Use attention grabbers , especially for technical or dry topics.
- Attend carefully to your first sentence and make sure you state engaging and useful points without errors.
- Be direct by asserting your claims confidently.
- When writing the introduction of a dissertation, you must place your points in a specific context. Avoid being too broad.
How Long Should a Dissertation Introduction Be?
While it is vital to offer a roadmap for your study, a dissertation introduction should make up about 10% of the entire project. As a rule, the introductory chapter is around 10-15 pages long. However, the extent of a thesis or dissertation introduction varies based on your field and the nature of your work. Therefore, it is wise to consider an assignment’s specific requirements and seek assistance from your supervisor regarding content expectations before writing a dissertation introduction chapter. You must still ensure that you provide a good overview of your project regardless of the length limit.
When to Write an Introduction to a Thesis or Dissertation?
It is common for students to write an introduction for a dissertation or thesis last or at least after completing the literature review chapter. This is because you cannot introduce a thesis or a dissertation until you have largely written your major sections, understood the whole work, and possessed exact information about what to present. By writing an introductory part and dissertation abstract at the end of your investigation, you will be able to reflect on an entire manuscript and present it coherently and fully.
Thesis/ Dissertation Introduction Structure
Like other sections of your study, an introduction to dissertation writing follows a specific structure. While organizational patterns differ when composing your beginning chapter, these are necessary components that you will cover:
- Topic Present your focus area, state why it matters, and who will benefit from reading the work.
- Context Offer contextual and background information about your subject. You may write a brief review of existing literature. Also, include relevant concepts and theories.
- Research problem When writing a dissertation introduction chapter, you must identify which issue is being investigated. Also identify prevailing problems, shortcomings, and gaps in research.
- Aims Explain what you wish to achieve and what or how your work will contribute to the issue.
- Objectives Determine your primary goal, including an outcome you intend to achieve and specify what you will look at.
- Research Questions What is your hypothesis or research question(s)? Mention them.
- Methodology Describe your dissertation methodology and approach briefly, including which techniques you will employ in attaining your study objectives.
- Significance Explain how your work will assist in bridging the gaps you identified, solving the issue, or contributing to what is already known. Besides, include in a dissertation introduction an explanation of how your project benefits the real-world.
- Limitations . Identify any constraints you faced while conducting your investigation. These are usually outside your control.
- Synopsis of the study’s structure Offer a brief framework of your study to help readers understand its organization.
How to Write a Dissertation Introduction Step-by-Step?
Introducing your research to readers can be tricky particularly if you are unaware of how to write an introduction to a dissertation or thesis. This section is one of the most important because it establishes a groundwork for the rest of your work. Thus, a poor start can ruin a flawless report. It should be simple, concise, consistent, and helpful. Below are 8 steps on how to write a good dissertation introduction.
1. Introduce a Topic
Start a dissertation or thesis paper introduction by announcing your topic. Doing this educates your readers about the substance and what questions you will be probing. Use a few sentences to indicate the wider issue under investigation. This hooks your audience by demonstrating what content the work will cover and encouraging them to continue reading. You can then focus on specific points when writing introduction for dissertation, which will lead to a research question(s). If possible, mention those people who will be interested in looking at your report. Example of hook in a dissertation introduction
This study investigates the role a CEO plays within an organizational management structure in a company in Berlin, Germany. The research examines to what extent the limitations of this role assist or hinders organizational policies and agendas.
2. Offer a Background of Your Study
This is the second part of your dissertation introduction. Here, you should set an effective scene for your work. Also, present relevant studies that have been conducted already on your dissertation topics to contextualize your project within the wider, current research. It is unnecessary to offer a lot of details in this part because this will be covered in your literature review chapter. When writing a dissertation introduction background, identify which works informed your study, highlight how your subject developed, and recognize which knowledge gaps you will address. Doing this informs your audience about the prevalent understanding of your focus area, why you should investigate the issue, and places your inquiry in perspective. It also offers a narrative, showing how various constructs, theories, and ideas are connected logically. For example, you can refer to specific research and describe how your investigation addresses its problems and limitations or why using alternative techniques is important. Write this section by summarizing how you interpret previous investigations and what you intend to accomplish on your own. However, do not create a large background. The key is to show how your manuscript fills a particular gap. Learn more about how to write dissertation introduction background section by looking at this sample: Example of dissertation introduction background
The position of CEO is considered to significantly influence the organizational success and play a proactive role in building healthy relationships between the board members. Some studies highlight why CEOs are important but fail to state the fundamental impact of CEOS on organization overall performance. Other researchers primarily focus on the principal functions a CEO fulfills. Therefore, the usefulness of this role is unclear. The present study examines various ways through which CEOs benefit or hinder organizational efficiency.
3. Present a Research Problem
The next step towards writing dissertation introduction is explaining your problem statement . For this part, state the specific issue that you will investigate and possibly solve. Consider how your work fills an existing gap. Use one or two lines to write this section of a dissertation or thesis intro effectively before elaborating further by explaining a potential answer and why your topic requires serious attention. Remember, whatever you are researching must be so grave that it creates questions demanding urgent responses. Your solutions will help in proving or disproving your research subject. Thus, this part is crucial in an introduction of a dissertation. State it plainly, competitively, and wholly, using prompts such as what are you investigating and what is your purpose? This helps readers understand your intentions and what to expect from the project. Example of dissertation introduction research problem
CEOs have been shown to have a huge impact on organization performance, sustainability and maintenance at all levels. Existing empirical studies are affected by methodological issues that underestimate the influence of CEOs on firm performance and efficiency. This research seeks to address these methodological issues and redefine the impact of CEO. Understanding the relationship between the role of CEOs and firm performance will have practical advantages and contribute to further development of efficient organization management strategies.
4. Discuss Your Aims and Objectives
The next step concerning how to write a thesis introduction is identifying your aims and objectives. This involves stating broadly what findings you desire to achieve. Specifically, demonstrate what others should expect of your work and topic as well as highlight long-term outcomes. Keep in mind that aims and objectives are not the same thing. Specifically, write your dissertation introduction by presenting a general aim or the key purpose of a project. You can then extend it by stating several research objectives in bullet points. These should be realizable, distinct, and applicable. Avoid being ambiguous and remember to explain your intentions and convey how you will answer the research question. Also, link statements in this segment of your dissertation introduction with your subject and research problem or question to demonstrate a specific focus and your study's scope. This helps your readers comprehend which inquiry aspects you have considered and how the study question will be answered. In particular, the number of objectives and questions should be aligned since you will need to state at the end of your work whether an objective for a specific question has been achieved. Use words such as “to assess”, “to examine”, “to study”, “to understand” or “to critically evaluate”, etc. when declaring sentences in this subdivision. Aims and objectives in a dissertation introduction example
Aim This study aims to determine the impact CEOs have on firm performance. Objectives: • Conduct surveys to gather data on CEO’s effect on firm efficiency and board performance. • Identify whether performance is linked with such variables as age, gender and work experience in the company. • Carry out interviews to determine qualitative information on the role of CEOs in organization performance.
5. State Your Research Question in the Introduction of a Dissertation
Once you have identified your purpose and goals in an introduction of thesis or dissertation, it is time to pose which research questions you will address. These are what you will answer to attain study objectives and form the main part of this chapter. You may also postulate hypotheses in your introduction to a dissertation if you have a different research paradigm. Check how to write a hypothesis to nail your research. Use the above-mentioned steps as a framework for this subheading of your first chapter because the aims and objectives section affects its nature. This helps you avoid surprising your audience as you write an introduction for a dissertation. While you can recall some key terms from earlier parts of your work, be focused, unambiguous, and concise. Example of thesis introduction research questions
• How does compensation affect employee performance positively? • What practical ways can firms use to enhance their revenues? • Why do employees prefer working remotely rather than going to work physically?
6. Emphasize the Importance of Your Study
Apart from identifying your research questions, it is necessary to describe in a thesis introduction why the study is important or its rationale. Start by explaining which issues your project addresses before outlining why this investigation is important and why you must conduct it. However, do not reveal everything about your outcomes when writing an introduction for a dissertation. Focus instead on hinting at the possible implications and impact your investigation could create for society or your field. Employ personal expertise and strong arguments by determining gaps in knowledge relating to your research problem before listing concerns that have not been addressed previously. Then, tell your readers how your report bridges the gap, resolves the issue or contributes to what is already known. In other words, how will your work be valuable to an academic community or society? Understanding how to write an introduction for a thesis or dissertation in this segment requires that you persuade your audience about why the topic requires an investigation to address an actual problem. Example of how to write about significance in a dissertation introduction
Most senior citizens are troubled by frequent joint pains, which makes their lives uncomfortable. It is essential to find the most effective solution to help them live happy lives. The results of this study will contribute to the wider literature about joint pain management among seniors by identifying a suitable therapeutic approach .
7. Mention Limitations in the Introduction for Thesis
You cannot write an introduction for a dissertation or thesis without mentioning which constraints were encountered when conducting your study. Experiencing limitations is a normal part of the research process. The types of challenges you might be subjected to include financial, data, time, topic, evidence, or research design. This will affect your work in some way, which highlights why you should identify them in the introduction chapter. Start this introductory section by stating clearly the kind of hindrances you met. This helps readers understand the issues you endured while completing your project before they go through the rest of your work. Be sure to describe why you faced them and why you could not overcome each limitation even after applying specific techniques. Also, evaluate the effect of individual restraints on the overall study outcomes and explain how these problems point to a need for additional research if necessary. You should also clarify how you addressed them as this assures your supervisor that the outcomes in the results section were not influenced negatively by any restrictions and are accurate. As you write your dissertation introduction, remember that you are conducting the study to demonstrate both practical and impractical things/those requiring further examination. Examples of thesis introduction limitations:
• Denied or limited access to documents, organizations, or people. • Time limits as board members tend to reduce performance over certain periods • Biases, particularly cultural ones.
8. Map Out Your Thesis or Dissertation
This is the last step regarding how to write introduction in dissertation. In particular, since readers should be impressed by your first section, informing them about the rest of the work is essential. Your professors might need to have a glimpse of your article and see how your intro of a thesis or dissertation is planned and divided. Your instructor can offer helpful feedback that will improve your study. The outline demonstrates your project’s organization and how it flows logically. Thus, conclude a dissertation introduction by giving a brief overview of each chapter. Think of these as mini summaries of each heading that give your supervisor a focused and firm idea about what comes next and how all the parts are related. Provide short explanations regarding your report framework using a handful of phrases without being very detailed. Concentrate mostly on the ideas and components that you will include in each section of your introduction to a thesis paper or dissertation. Example of a dissertation overview
The first chapter introduced the topic and offered background information. The rest of the study is organized as follows. In Chapter 2 the theoretical underpinning of this study will be identified and a literature review will be conducted followed by a description of the methodological choices of this research in Chapter 3. Chapter 4 will focus on data analysis and the presentation of results. Chapter 5 will provide a conclusion and explanation of the work’s implications.
Dissertation or Thesis Introduction Format
It is also vital to format a dissertation introduction properly and according to a specified style such as APA, Chicago, or MLA. The design mostly depends on requirements. Writing a thesis introduction involves complying with rules related to aspects like headings and subheadings, layout of pages, font selection and size, and in-text citations. It is also common for schools or professors to provide free templates for the relevant introduction of a thesis or dissertation outline, which you can simply take and fill in your details.
Thesis/ Dissertation Introduction Examples
Be sure to consult a dissertation introduction example from journal papers to learn about the layout of this section. Even if you can find a good dissertation introduction sample, remember to always seek assistance from your professor or supervisor as they will offer valuable support and advice in addition to pointing you on the right path. You can also read how to write a good thesis introduction examples below to gain more insights about which strategies you can use when composing this section. Thesis introduction example
Dissertation introduction example 1
Dissertation introduction example 2
Tips on Writing an Introduction to a Dissertation
Here are some extra dissertation introduction writing tips:
- Avoid overlapping your dissertation or thesis introduction too much with other sections. For example, do not offer an extensive background or detailed information about your methods.
- Also, when writing the introduction to a dissertation, you cannot initiate it with a research question. Rather, provide adequate context before identifying your question.
- Keep it short. Since you already know how to write a good thesis introduction, stick to its main purpose.
- While you can cite sources in this section, include only a few studies with a focus on mostly past research as this situates your work in a specific context.
- Remember to quote multiple studies as a group using semicolons for separation. This enhances your argument’s credibility or shows the validity of specific sources.
Checklist for Introduction to Dissertation
Use this checklist to ensure you have grasped all ideas about how to write an introduction for a dissertation or thesis:
- checkbox I stated my study’s focus and topic.
- checkbox I told why I conducted this research and explained its significance.
- checkbox My introductory chapter covers all questions.
- checkbox I have provided a problem statement.
- checkbox I have justified the scope of my work.
- checkbox I demonstrated how important my study is.
- checkbox The background section is extensive enough.
- checkbox My background section is relevant in terms of aims and objectives.
- checkbox I included a chapter-by-chapter overview of my work.
- checkbox No other questions aren’t needed for more clarification.
Bottom Line on How to Write Introduction for Dissertation
You are now familiar with how to write an introduction for dissertation or thesis. Readers use this section to understand what you are up to, why, and how. They can decide to continue or stop based on your presentation. Hence, ensure to make your dissertation or thesis introduction engaging and relevant. Look at an example of a thesis introduction provided to learn more about the major points in this article. However, you will gain more by practicing what you have learned. Thus, start writing as soon as you finish reading all sections. More information about PhD writing (literature review, results, dissertation discussion , limitations, dissertation acknowledgments , etc.), you can read in the Dissertation Guide of our blog. From insights on how to write a dissertation conclusion to formatting your thesis appendix you will find detailed step-by-step instructions, tips and examples.
PhD writing can be challenging. That’s why you may need to buy dissertation online . Our certified academic experts do everything to ensure quick delivery within your deadlines, and beyond all, high quality.
1. How long should a thesis introduction be?
Your thesis introduction should make up about 10 percent of the total word count of your work. However, the provided guidelines by your supervisor or school department, the nature of your task, and your subject area may influence how long this section is. Read the requirements carefully and adhere to them.
2. Should I write an introduction to a dissertation first or last?
You should wait and write a dissertation introduction last. This ensures that you only focus on the arguments and points you know. While you might have a clear idea about what you want to study, the whole research process may reveal new details that you will want to include in your introduction.
3. How to start a thesis introduction?
Start your thesis introduction with a hook to grab the attention of your readers. One of the main objectives of this segment is to engage the audience by making them want to go through your work. However, use one strategy to avoid giving the impression that your manuscript lacks substance.
4. What tense should I use when writing a dissertation thesis?
Write a dissertation or thesis introduction in the present tense because you are talking about factual information regarding your topic. Presenting it in this way shows that you are sure about the correctness of your research. Even if your study is related to historical themes, you must still use this tense.
Joe Eckel is an expert on Dissertations writing. He makes sure that each student gets precious insights on composing A-grade academic writing.
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How To Write A Thesis Introduction: Secrets, Tips, Advice
When you write a thesis, you should pay exceptional attention to the introduction. The reader will start your thesis from the introduction, and he will make up his view and understanding of the problem, your ideas, professionalism and writing skills based on the introduction. Your introduction is an important section that must be perfect. Good news that you can read our guide on how to write a thesis introduction of high quality or find thesis writer on our website. Keep reading and find out useful information, tips, and advice to create a successful project.
Thesis Introduction: How to Start?
A thesis introduction is the first special chapter of your work and the starting point of your paper. If to say shortly, you should describe the topic of your thesis, talk about problem statements and write persuasive points based on an overview of your work. Let's define the main purposes of your introduction?
- To introduce the topic: answer the hypothetical question of what the main reason is, what a thesis idea is and why it is relevant today?
- To win the reader’s interest. Use persuasive but clear words and facts to make your introduction interesting for the reader. People should be interested in keeping reading your dissertation.
- To demonstrate awareness of your topic as well as the relevance of the research question . The author should persuade the reader of professionalism. Your main goal is to show the entire research is relevant, and it contains significant academic and practical components.
Which Parts Should Your Introduction Contain?
The introduction should be placed in your thesis just after the table of contents. In this part, you have to provide readers with a good beginning to explain to them shortly what they will read in the document. You need to describe your research with its main purpose and direction. Below, you can find the main parts your introduction should contain:
- Context and topic. Write about what your readers need to know to understand your thesis.
- Scope and focus. Think about the certain aspect of the topic you want to address to your readers.
- Importance and relevance. Your current research must fit into work that already was done on the chosen topic.
- Objectives and questions. Define research problem , explain what's the main goal of your research and how good it gives all the needed information to readers.
- Structure overview. Each chapter of your thesis must contain something useful to explain the main goal of the writing.
What Information Should You Give in the Introduction?
Give only meaningful, important and accurate information in your thesis and the introduction. Thanks to the details you give here, your reader should understand:
- What is the topic of your paper;
- What part of the general topic needs further investigations, research and why;
- Your thesis statement.
Each paragraph has the number of steps you should follow, and the introduction is not an exception to this rule. Read the steps you should make when you write your introduction piece.
Writing a Thesis Introduction: Steps
These 12 steps that can be common despite the topic. However, some specific fields require more stages.
- Introduce the topic of your research problem;
- Give some general background information;
- Make a short overview of related literature you have studied (the detailed view should be written in a literature review section);
- Give the general idea of the scope of the topic you have chosen;
- Describe in details the current situation concerning the problem;
- Find the area or piece of the topic which is not researched yet or researched not enough;
- Explain the relevance, importance of the research you are going to do;
- State the main aims and objectives of your thesis;
- Name the research question (questions) or problem (problems);
- Give your hypotheses;
- Show the how to structure a thesis ;
- Outline the methodology you used.
Your introduction is the only chance to catch the interest of your reader and to make the first impression. Remember the introductory part has the same importance as all other chapters of your dissertation you have to complete.
How to Make a Well-Structured Introduction?
Above, we have mentioned the main parts that must be included in the thesis or dissertation introduction. Let's see what information you need to write in each of those parts. Make sure you read all the points thoroughly to include all the needed elements to your writing.
Context and Topic
Start with the topic introduction and provide readers with a short background. Show why the chosen subject is important to make the audience interested. It means you should select a relevant topic for discussion.
Scope and Focus
Here you have to define the scope of your dissertation and focus of your research. For example, you can mention the area of your investigation, the time period of your research, the communities you're researching, or any other specific aspects of your dissertation.
Importance and Relevance
Try to explain your motivation for this research. Provide an overview of the current state of your study and don't forget to cite sources. You will make a more detailed view of all used sources in the literature review section of your manuscript. Show the importance of your research and how it helps to solve a particular problem.
Objectives and Questions
Pay a lot of attention to this part because here you set up the expectations of the rest of your work. Please focus on the main goal of your research to formulate your objectives and questions. Here you can provide the methods you used in your paper to answer these questions. You can write about it in detail in the methodology part. You can also include your hypotheses here. It's possible to include the hypotheses after the literature review.
Your document must have a good structure to guide the reader through. Make an overview of the structure: write just 1-2 sentences to describe the content of each part of your thesis. But if the research is complicated, you can write a paragraph for each part to explain the document's structure.
How to Organize Your Work?
You don’t write your thesis in the same order as all the chapters appear in the outline. So how to organize your work effectively to complete your Ph.D. dissertation successfully?
- You should organize your whole paper in a logical consequence and write your work using the informative language;
- Find facts, figures, create infographics to illustrate your argument in details;
- Define the main parts of the thesis: Background information; Facts you will use in the argument; Observations; Ways of connecting review, analysis, and conclusions; The main elements of the thesis (sections).
- Now you can start writing.
Length of Introduction
The length is an important issue. It shouldn’t take a lot of time to read it, but it should contain all the important points (please check them above). There are no special length requirements for thesis introduction, just be clear and don’t provide unnecessary information here. At the same time, there is no need to squeeze all your points in one page. Two or three pages will be quite enough. Read our guide to find out how long is a thesis paper or its separate chapter.
Rule ‘General - Specific – General’
It is a good rule you can follow not only in thesis introductions but many other writing papers. You should start your paper with a broad position - explain why the field for your research matters and why it is relevant.
After that, you can go to narrower things. Find points which lie in your niche, share and describe details, explain why they matter to your topic.
In the end, you should think wider again. Make connections between narrow and general things to show the effects and results of your research.
How to Write an Engaging Thesis Introduction: Tips
Read the next tips if you want to know how to write a thesis introduction in a good way.
- Give the proper acknowledgment of previous research on which you are writing a thesis paper .
- In the beginning, give your readers an understanding of how you are going to structure your thesis. What will they find in chapters?
- Surprise the reader a little. Give something unexpected details: unique research or point of view, some facts or perspectives. Make your reader feel excited about reading.
- Always talk about the best experience in the field: check and present the best examples that you have, the best literature review, and the best experience of other researchers.
- Don’t use specific vocabulary in the beginning. It is like a door to your thesis for people to make it clear for understanding.
- Don’t neglect to draft. This will help you to improve your work as in the case of any other chapter.
- Use the simple present tense to state the topic/subject. Use simple past tense/present perfect tense for describing background information.
- Don’t include a lot of citations. You can provide readers with all the used sources in the literature review chapter.
It’s not easy to write a good thesis introduction. We tried to give you all the necessary information because we knew that you might have difficulties with that. But if you feel unconfident, it’s a good idea to order your thesis from professionals. If you still have any questions, you can address them to our professional writers, they will answer you with pleasure. Contact experts to finish your project easily! Our English professionals can create a perfect Ph.D. thesis to shift your expectations!
The methodology is an important part of your dissertation. It describes a broad philosophical underpinning to your chosen research methods, either quantitative or qualitative, to explain to readers your approach better. Make sure that you’re clear about an academic basis for your choice of research ...
If your college requires you to undergraduate thesis, then chances are that they want you to write a literature review. If you’re writing a literature review for academic purposes, then this document demonstrates that you have learned from the previous publications and are ready to work on new ideas...
Thesis abstract is an essential part of the dissertation paper. It is a summary of a complete work. It gives readers a chance to discover the key points of your dissertation, its research chapter, methodology and results part. Writing a proper abstract is important. Students use various techniques a...
Thesis And Dissertation
Thesis Introduction Writing
Last updated on: Feb 9, 2023
How to Write a Good Thesis Introduction - A Complete Guide
By: Cathy A.
Reviewed By: Chris H.
Published on: Nov 10, 2020
After hours of struggle and hard work, have you reached the important stage of your academic life where you need to write a thesis? Yes?
You are well aware of the fact that if you want to make a lasting impression of your work, you will have to start with a strong introduction chapter! It puts forward the aims and objectives, and the key aspects of the topic that you have chosen for your thesis.
It is added after the table of contents and it explains the scope of the topic and helps the readers understand the thesis easily.
Here is a complete guide for you to learn how to write an outstanding thesis introduction that will impress everyone.
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How to Write a Good Thesis Introduction
For many people, thesis introduction is the most frightening part to start with. It is true that writing introduction can be a challenging task.
Before going any further, you need to acknowledge that the most important part of the thesis is its introduction. It decides the fate of your thesis and whether it will be a success or not.
A good introduction will draw the reader’s attention to the entire paper.
Make sure that you make it captivating and compelling enough to impress your professor or readers.
If you want to learn how to write a good thesis introduction, you cannot blindly start writing your thesis and get done with it. It requires a strategic plan, so before the part where you actually start writing, you need to remember a few things that are mentioned below.
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Things to Remember Before Writing a Thesis Introduction
Get the perfect introduction and the rest of your paper will follow. Mess it up and you will struggle to catch up.
The introduction is the first paragraph that will recount what you are going to discuss in your paper.
Here are some of the important points that you need to take into account before starting writing a thesis introduction.
- Brainstorm different ideas in your mind.
- Choose the type of paper you are comfortable with incorporating in the writing process.
- Pen down a rough draft of ideas you have in your mind.
- Organize your thoughts on choosing the topic.
- Even if you are going to use "write my paper" essay writing service, it is better to provide a topic for your research paper.
- Choose your topic according to the interest and aptitude of your target audience.
- Research the content of your topic.
- Go through a previous research regarding your topic and subject for maximum grip on the thesis.
- Don't forget to mention the terms and scope.
- Do not use common phrases when you are writing the introduction of your thesis.
- A good introduction should include strong and striking words that describe the research aims.
Steps in Writing the Introduction of a Thesis
Writing an introduction for your thesis is not similar to writing the introduction of an essay. When you write the introduction of your essay, it gives a general idea of what you are going to write in the body paragraphs.
Introduction of your thesis is different from that. The introduction tells the reader about the purpose of your thesis.
Why are you conducting this research? Why is it important to conduct research on that specific topic? Do not write your introduction in one go.
Keep the introduction separate from the purpose of your research. Highlight your research question in the introduction. It should provide a comprehensive outlook of your research paper.
Make the Introduction Crisp and Interesting
Your introduction is going to set the stage for your research paper. Make sure your introduction is interesting enough to grab the audience. The introduction should be written in such a tone that it sounds interesting to your readers and offers value for their time that they will invest in reading your paper.
The introduction might change a few times depending on the content mentioned in the research paper and when you start revising and proofreading it. Writing an introduction for your essay is easier. Just explain the background information of your topic in the introduction.
Don't Reveal All the Information in the Introduction
Every person has a different taste when it comes to writing. Start your introduction with a striking sentence. It is better not to reveal all the information in the introduction. This will maintain the interest of the reader.
Sometimes, the students try to summarize everything in the introduction. If you reveal all the information in the introductory paragraph, the reader will end up reading only the introduction.
Finalizing the Thesis Introduction
Once you have finished writing your thesis introduction, following are some questions that you need to ask yourself.
- Does the first line of your introduction discusses the problem that you are going to discuss in your thesis paper?
- Does the introduction provides a case for the research?
- Does the introduction provides a thesis overview?
How to Write MS and PhD Thesis Introduction?
There are a few things which are necessary for writing an introduction of MS and PHD thesis.
- Mention your topic and give background.
- Describe scope and term of the topic and don't forget to define the terms thoroughly.
- Make sure the topic is strong, a good idea helps build the perfect foundation of an introduction.
- Deliver the literature review associated with the topic.
- Sketch the present situation.
- Evaluate the present situation, advantages/ disadvantages.
- Identify the gap.
- Recognize the significance of the proposed research.
- Mention the research questions/problems.
- Mention the research objectives and aims.
- Mention the hypothesis.
- Sketch the order of information in the thesis.
- Sketch the methodology
Difference Between MS and PhD Thesis Introduction?
The major difference is that a PhD thesis introduction involves the broader scope of the particular topic and includes broader details of the research methodology.
Thesis Introduction Outline
When you get to the thesis introduction outline, make sure that you start it with a hook. The term hook means that you want to start the thesis introduction with an attention-grabbing sentence.
There are three things to keep in mind:
- Introduce the reader to the topic via a "General Statement."
- Then state the specific topic via a "Thesis Statement."
- Lastly, "Conclude" everything nicely to tie things together.
These steps will help shape the perfect thesis introduction that will surely impress the reader. Make sure to be as interesting as possible as this will be the deciding point that will the reader read the rest of the thesis or not.
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Thesis Introduction - Common Problems to Avoid
There are some common problems that you need to avoid while writing an introduction for your thesis paper.
- No need to provide too much detail. Provide enough detail necessary to support your argument.
- Do not rush into lots of details. Make sure your introduction is clearly explaining the aim, its questions and contributions in the opening lines.
- Follow a coherent structure. Not following a structure will leave the reader confused. The same goes for your thesis questions. Do not discuss the methods before listing down your questions.
- Do not use too much technical language. It is important to provide clear and concise information.
A thesis represents all the hard work and struggle you did in your previous years of education and it decides the fate of your future and career as well. If you end up doing bad in it, all your efforts and struggles may go in vain.
Simply follow the above guide or revisit our blog next time you are up to write a thesis. It'll provide you great assistance and you will wholly learn how to write a good thesis introduction for sure.
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Writing a thesis is not an easy task. It requires a massive amount of research and study. The entire result of your efforts in college or university depends on your thesis.
If you fail at writing a good thesis, your struggle through your entire college life goes down the drain. So, it is better to take assistance.
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Cathy has been been working as an author on our platform for over five years now. She has a Masters degree in mass communication and is well-versed in the art of writing. Cathy is a professional who takes her work seriously and is widely appreciated by clients for her excellent writing skills.
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