How to Write a Research Paper Introduction (with Examples)
The research paper introduction section, along with the Title and Abstract, can be considered the face of any research paper. The following article is intended to guide you in organizing and writing the research paper introduction for a quality academic article or dissertation.
The research paper introduction aims to present the topic to the reader. A study will only be accepted for publishing if you can ascertain that the available literature cannot answer your research question. So it is important to ensure that you have read important studies on that particular topic, especially those within the last five to ten years, and that they are properly referenced in this section. 1 What should be included in the research paper introduction is decided by what you want to tell readers about the reason behind the research and how you plan to fill the knowledge gap. The best research paper introduction provides a systemic review of existing work and demonstrates additional work that needs to be done. It needs to be brief, captivating, and well-referenced; a well-drafted research paper introduction will help the researcher win half the battle.
The introduction for a research paper is where you set up your topic and approach for the reader. It has several key goals:
- Present your research topic
- Capture reader interest
- Summarize existing research
- Position your own approach
- Define your specific research problem and problem statement
- Highlight the novelty and contributions of the study
- Give an overview of the paper’s structure
The research paper introduction can vary in size and structure depending on whether your paper presents the results of original empirical research or is a review paper. Some research paper introduction examples are only half a page while others are a few pages long. In many cases, the introduction will be shorter than all of the other sections of your paper; its length depends on the size of your paper as a whole.
Table of Contents
What is the introduction for a research paper, why is the introduction important in a research paper, what are the parts of introduction in the research, 1. introduce the research topic:, 2. determine a research niche:, 3. place your research within the research niche:, frequently asked questions on research paper introduction, key points to remember.
The introduction in a research paper is placed at the beginning to guide the reader from a broad subject area to the specific topic that your research addresses. They present the following information to the reader
- Scope: The topic covered in the research paper
- Context: Background of your topic
- Importance: Why your research matters in that particular area of research and the industry problem that can be targeted
The research paper introduction conveys a lot of information and can be considered an essential roadmap for the rest of your paper. A good introduction for a research paper is important for the following reasons:
- It stimulates your reader’s interest: A good introduction section can make your readers want to read your paper by capturing their interest. It informs the reader what they are going to learn and helps determine if the topic is of interest to them.
- It helps the reader understand the research background: Without a clear introduction, your readers may feel confused and even struggle when reading your paper. A good research paper introduction will prepare them for the in-depth research to come. It provides you the opportunity to engage with the readers and demonstrate your knowledge and authority on the specific topic.
- It explains why your research paper is worth reading: Your introduction can convey a lot of information to your readers. It introduces the topic, why the topic is important, and how you plan to proceed with your research.
- It helps guide the reader through the rest of the paper: The research paper introduction gives the reader a sense of the nature of the information that will support your arguments and the general organization of the paragraphs that will follow. It offers an overview of what to expect when reading the main body of your paper.
A good research paper introduction section should comprise three main elements: 2
- What is known: This sets the stage for your research. It informs the readers of what is known on the subject.
- What is lacking: This is aimed at justifying the reason for carrying out your research. This could involve investigating a new concept or method or building upon previous research.
- What you aim to do: This part briefly states the objectives of your research and its major contributions. Your detailed hypothesis will also form a part of this section.
How to write a research paper introduction?
The first step in writing the research paper introduction is to inform the reader what your topic is and why it’s interesting or important. This is generally accomplished with a strong opening statement. The second step involves establishing the kinds of research that have been done and ending with limitations or gaps in the research that you intend to address. Finally, the research paper introduction clarifies how your own research fits in and what problem it addresses. If your research involved testing hypotheses, these should be stated along with your research question. The hypothesis should be presented in the past tense since it will have been tested by the time you are writing the research paper introduction.
The following key points, with examples, can guide you when writing the research paper introduction section:
- Highlight the importance of the research field or topic
- Describe the background of the topic
- Present an overview of current research on the topic
Example: The inclusion of experiential and competency-based learning has benefitted electronics engineering education. Industry partnerships provide an excellent alternative for students wanting to engage in solving real-world challenges. Industry-academia participation has grown in recent years due to the need for skilled engineers with practical training and specialized expertise. However, from the educational perspective, many activities are needed to incorporate sustainable development goals into the university curricula and consolidate learning innovation in universities.
- Reveal a gap in existing research or oppose an existing assumption
- Formulate the research question
Example: There have been plausible efforts to integrate educational activities in higher education electronics engineering programs. However, very few studies have considered using educational research methods for performance evaluation of competency-based higher engineering education, with a focus on technical and or transversal skills. To remedy the current need for evaluating competencies in STEM fields and providing sustainable development goals in engineering education, in this study, a comparison was drawn between study groups without and with industry partners.
- State the purpose of your study
- Highlight the key characteristics of your study
- Describe important results
- Highlight the novelty of the study.
- Offer a brief overview of the structure of the paper.
Example: The study evaluates the main competency needed in the applied electronics course, which is a fundamental core subject for many electronics engineering undergraduate programs. We compared two groups, without and with an industrial partner, that offered real-world projects to solve during the semester. This comparison can help determine significant differences in both groups in terms of developing subject competency and achieving sustainable development goals.
The purpose of the research paper introduction is to introduce the reader to the problem definition, justify the need for the study, and describe the main theme of the study. The aim is to gain the reader’s attention by providing them with necessary background information and establishing the main purpose and direction of the research.
The length of the research paper introduction can vary across journals and disciplines. While there are no strict word limits for writing the research paper introduction, an ideal length would be one page, with a maximum of 400 words over 1-4 paragraphs. Generally, it is one of the shorter sections of the paper as the reader is assumed to have at least a reasonable knowledge about the topic. 2 For example, for a study evaluating the role of building design in ensuring fire safety, there is no need to discuss definitions and nature of fire in the introduction; you could start by commenting upon the existing practices for fire safety and how your study will add to the existing knowledge and practice.
When deciding what to include in the research paper introduction, the rest of the paper should also be considered. The aim is to introduce the reader smoothly to the topic and facilitate an easy read without much dependency on external sources. 3 Below is a list of elements you can include to prepare a research paper introduction outline and follow it when you are writing the research paper introduction. Topic introduction: This can include key definitions and a brief history of the topic. Research context and background: Offer the readers some general information and then narrow it down to specific aspects. Details of the research you conducted: A brief literature review can be included to support your arguments or line of thought. Rationale for the study: This establishes the relevance of your study and establishes its importance. Importance of your research: The main contributions are highlighted to help establish the novelty of your study Research hypothesis: Introduce your research question and propose an expected outcome. Organization of the paper: Include a short paragraph of 3-4 sentences that highlights your plan for the entire paper
Cite only works that are most relevant to your topic; as a general rule, you can include one to three. Note that readers want to see evidence of original thinking. So it is better to avoid using too many references as it does not leave much room for your personal standpoint to shine through. Citations in your research paper introduction support the key points, and the number of citations depend on the subject matter and the point discussed. If the research paper introduction is too long or overflowing with citations, it is better to cite a few review articles rather than the individual articles summarized in the review. A good point to remember when citing research papers in the introduction section is to include at least one-third of the references in the introduction.
The literature review plays a significant role in the research paper introduction section. A good literature review accomplishes the following: Introduces the topic – Establishes the study’s significance – Provides an overview of the relevant literature – Provides context for the study using literature – Identifies knowledge gaps However, remember to avoid making the following mistakes when writing a research paper introduction: Do not use studies from the literature review to aggressively support your research Avoid direct quoting Do not allow literature review to be the focus of this section. Instead, the literature review should only aid in setting a foundation for the manuscript.
Remember the following key points for writing a good research paper introduction: 4
- Avoid stuffing too much general information: Avoid including what an average reader would know and include only that information related to the problem being addressed in the research paper introduction. For example, when describing a comparative study of non-traditional methods for mechanical design optimization, information related to the traditional methods and differences between traditional and non-traditional methods would not be relevant. In this case, the introduction for the research paper should begin with the state-of-the-art non-traditional methods and methods to evaluate the efficiency of newly developed algorithms.
- Avoid packing too many references: Cite only the required works in your research paper introduction. The other works can be included in the discussion section to strengthen your findings.
- Avoid extensive criticism of previous studies: Avoid being overly critical of earlier studies while setting the rationale for your study. A better place for this would be the Discussion section, where you can highlight the advantages of your method.
- Avoid describing conclusions of the study: When writing a research paper introduction remember not to include the findings of your study. The aim is to let the readers know what question is being answered. The actual answer should only be given in the Results and Discussion section.
To summarize, the research paper introduction section should be brief yet informative. It should convince the reader the need to conduct the study and motivate him to read further.
1. Jawaid, S. A., & Jawaid, M. (2019). How to write introduction and discussion. Saudi Journal of Anaesthesia, 13(Suppl 1), S18.
2. Dewan, P., & Gupta, P. (2016). Writing the title, abstract and introduction: Looks matter!. Indian pediatrics, 53, 235-241.
3. Cetin, S., & Hackam, D. J. (2005). An approach to the writing of a scientific Manuscript1. Journal of Surgical Research, 128(2), 165-167.
4. Bavdekar, S. B. (2015). Writing introduction: Laying the foundations of a research paper. Journal of the Association of Physicians of India, 63(7), 44-6.
Paperpal is an AI writing assistant that help academics write better, faster with real-time suggestions for in-depth language and grammar correction. Trained on millions of research manuscripts enhanced by professional academic editors, Paperpal delivers human precision at machine speed.
Try it for free or upgrade to Paperpal Prime , which unlocks unlimited access to premium features like academic translation, paraphrasing, contextual synonyms, consistency checks and more. It’s like always having a professional academic editor by your side! Go beyond limitations and experience the future of academic writing. Get Paperpal Prime now at just US$19 a month!
- Scientific writing style guides explained
5 Reasons for Rejection After Peer Review
Ethical research practices for research with human subjects.
- How to write a research paper title
Practice vs. practise: Learn the difference
Academic paraphrasing: why paperpal’s rewrite should be your first choice , you may also like, paraphrasing in academic writing: answering top author queries, chemistry terms: 7 commonly confused words in chemistry..., 7 ways to improve your academic writing process, how to write a conclusion for research papers..., paperpal copilot is live: experience the generative ai..., life sciences papers: 9 tips for authors writing..., what is peer review: importance and types of..., self-plagiarism in research: what it is and how....
6 Examples of Research Paper Introductions to Hook Your Readers
Welcome to our guide on research paper introductions!
As you may already know, the introduction is a critical component of any research paper, as it sets the tone for the rest of the paper and establishes the reader’s expectations.
The introductory paragraph in a research paper should give an overview of what the reader can expect from the rest of the paper.
It should also establish a context for readers who are new to this topic. More importantly, when writing a research paper introduction, it’s best to focus on two key points: the problem being addressed and how this particular study (or studies) addresses it.
If those two points are clear then readers should be able to follow along as they read more into your paper.
In the following sections, we’ll provide you with examples of different types of research paper introductions to help you get started.
Types of Research Paper Introductions
A general introduction is suitable when you’re discussing a range of different topics or subjects within one paper. It provides the reader with an idea of where you stand in regard to the topic at hand and can be followed up with a sentence or two explaining your specific angle.
Topic: The Effect of Social Media on Mental Health
Social media has become an integral part of our daily lives, and its impact on mental health has become a subject of increasing concern in recent years. While social media platforms have provided a new means of communication and access to information, they have also been linked to negative mental health outcomes such as depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem. This research paper aims to explore the relationship between social media use and mental health outcomes. Specifically, we will investigate how social media affects individuals’ perceptions of themselves and their social relationships, as well as the potential impact on their emotional well-being. Through a thorough literature review and original research, we hope to shed light on the complex relationship between social media and mental health and provide insights into effective interventions for those who may be negatively impacted by social media use.
Topic: Formal Presentations at University
Most universities require their graduate-level courses to have some form of formal presentation such as a dissertation, master’s thesis, or doctoral dissertation. These presentations often take the form of an oral defense. Formal presentations provide both teachers and students with feedback in order to make future projects better. Teachers also use these projects to gauge student performance and provide guidance during group discussions throughout the course. What makes these oral defenses different than others is that they must adhere to strict guidelines set forth by the institution overseeing them. Failure to comply with these guidelines may result in expulsion from the university. Oral defenses typically contain three major parts: an opening statement, main body, and closing statement. However, some institutions may offer variations of this format. For instance, many institutions now require a written version of the presentation that includes all major aspects required by the institution.
Quote-Based Research Paper Introduction
This type of introduction is ideal for research papers that rely heavily on quotes to establish their point.
In these cases, quoting the most relevant piece of information is usually necessary because doing so will allow the reader to better understand what your discussion entails.
With that said, remember that every quote you include needs to add something significant and/or novel which hasn’t been covered before – otherwise it won’t be worth including in your paper!
Topic: International Student Success at the University Level
Shakespeare once said that “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” This line from Romeo and Juliet suggests that names don’t matter. Similarly, the fact that someone goes to school in a certain country does not affect the quality of education. Yet research has shown that international students perform worse academically than domestic ones in American colleges and universities. So, the question becomes: How do we foster success among international students? It is possible that differences in culture and socialization contribute to the observed gaps in academic achievement. Given that, our next step should be to examine the challenges faced by international students in an effort to find effective ways of addressing these challenges.
Topic: The Impact of Social Media on Mental Health
As Mark Twain once said, “Comparison is the death of joy.” In today’s world, social media platforms provide us with countless opportunities to compare our lives to those of others, often leading to feelings of inadequacy, anxiety, and depression. Research has shown that excessive social media use can have a negative impact on mental health, particularly among young adults. Given the increasing prevalence of social media in our daily lives, it’s important to explore this topic in more depth and understand the ways in which social media use can impact mental health outcomes.
Surprising Fact-based Introductions
A surprising fact-based introduction works well with scientific or medical topics where there is surprising new evidence that directly impacts how people view a certain issue. In such cases, it’s often necessary to give some background on what exactly is at stake in order to highlight why it’s important and relevant. Following that, you can introduce the key findings and what they mean.
Topic: The relationship between caffeine and weight loss
Caffeine is a well-known stimulant, which is consumed by millions of people on a daily basis in the form of coffee, tea, energy drinks, or pills. Although it’s unclear how much caffeine is too much for an individual to consume each day, it’s commonly believed that the positive effects of caffeine are canceled out by the increased appetite that results from drinking caffeinated beverages. But did you know that caffeine might actually help you lose weight?! Recent research conducted by a team of investigators from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that the more caffeine an individual consumes, the lower their risk for obesity. That’s right: while it may sound counterintuitive, having one or two cups of coffee per day could actually decrease your chances of becoming overweight or obese.
Topic: The Benefits of Napping on Memory Retention
Did you know that a short nap can help boost your memory retention by up to 30%? Most people think of napping as something reserved for children or lazy adults, but recent research has shown that a short nap can actually be beneficial for cognitive function, particularly in regard to memory. In today’s fast-paced world, we often prioritize productivity over rest, but the science behind napping suggests that we should be doing the opposite. In this paper, we will explore the benefits of napping on memory retention and discuss how individuals and organizations can incorporate napping into their daily routines for optimal cognitive performance.
Explanatory research paper introductions
These types of research paper introductions are used when you’re introducing a new concept or idea that requires the audience to have knowledge of basic facts in order to follow along.
In this case, it’s critical that you provide the necessary background information and then follow up with a statement about why the rest of the research is interesting and/or relevant.
For example, you might say that the paper discusses a recent study on mindfulness and meditation.
In order to fully grasp the research and the claims being made, it’s necessary to first understand what mindfulness is and why it’s relevant. The following paragraphs would therefore serve as an introduction to both topics.
Mindfulness is a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations. Regular practice of mindfulness can be highly beneficial to both mental and physical health. There are many different techniques for practicing mindfulness: Mindful walking, sitting with an open mind, eating without distractions, listening deeply to others, or simply noticing what you see in your environment. What’s most important is that you develop the ability to pay attention in a way that helps you connect with yourself and the world around you. And just like anything else, mindfulness takes practice. The best way to get started is by taking part in a course or program offered at your local community center, hospital, or online.
Topic: The Effectiveness of Online Learning in Higher Education
As more and more students turn to online learning to pursue their higher education, questions have arisen regarding the effectiveness of this type of education. While online learning offers a number of benefits, such as flexibility and convenience, it also presents unique challenges, including the lack of face-to-face interaction with instructors and classmates. This research paper aims to examine the effectiveness of online learning in higher education and compare it to traditional classroom-based learning. By conducting a literature review and analyzing data from surveys and interviews with students and instructors, this paper seeks to identify the advantages and disadvantages of online learning and provide recommendations for improving its effectiveness.
Narration-based paper introductions
This type of research paper introduction is used when you’re discussing a topic or event in detail.
You could talk about why it’s important, explain what happened and how it relates to your larger point, summarize what happened (as with a timeline), or present an example to prove your thesis.
Whatever you choose, it’s imperative that you make your readers want to keep reading.
This is done by telling a compelling story, using storytelling elements such as tension and conflict, or painting a vivid picture of the scene with sensory details.
Topic: The impact of stress on memory and learning
It’s well known that stress can impair our ability to learn new things, but it also has an impact on our memories. Well, I have first-hand experience with this. The night before my midterm, I had a major fight with my partner. This was one of the worst arguments we’ve ever had and it went on for hours. Needless to say, it stressed me out and there’s no doubt that it hurt my performance on the test. The funny thing is that in the days following the argument, my partner and I were able to clear everything up, so now we’re good again. But this experience taught me one very important lesson: the impact of stress on memory and learning might seem negligible but it can actually have a long-term impact on academic performance.
Topic: The Effects of Social Media on Mental Health
As I sit here scrolling through my Instagram feed, I can’t help but feel a sense of envy and inadequacy wash over me. The seemingly perfect lives of influencers and friends alike are on full display, leaving me to question why I don’t have the same level of success and happiness. It’s no secret that social media has become a ubiquitous part of our daily lives, with billions of people using platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to connect with others and share their lives. But what are the effects of this constant exposure to other people’s carefully curated images and narratives? Are we putting ourselves at risk for developing mental health issues like anxiety and depression? In this paper, I will explore the research that has been done on the topic of social media and mental health, examining both the positive and negative effects that social media can have on our psychological well-being. By the end of this paper, you will have a better understanding of how social media impacts mental health and what steps we can take to mitigate its negative effects.
Teaser-based research paper introductions
The most common types of research paper introductions are teasers.
This simply means that your first sentence is a hook: something to grab your reader’s attention and make them want to read more.
One way to create a compelling teaser is by addressing an interesting question or controversial topic, such as “Why do some people succeed and others fail?”
Another approach is to pose a problem that you plan to solve.
Here are examples of a teaser-based research paper introduction.
Topic: Why do some people succeed and others fail?
Failure is a part of life. We all fail at one time or another, it’s just something that happens. But why do some people fail more than others? And what about people who never seem to fail? You see them every day, they are in your office and everywhere else you go. These people always seem to be successful and highly driven. How do they do it? This is a question that has puzzled psychologists and other social scientists for years. In the past, a lot of psychologists believed that success was due to differences in abilities and intelligence. Others said it depended on luck. Still, others believed that family background determined whether someone succeeded or not. As you can imagine, these explanations led to considerable debate and disagreement among scholars.
Topic: The Future of Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare
Are we on the cusp of a revolution in healthcare? With the rise of artificial intelligence (AI), the answer might just be yes. From machine learning algorithms that can identify diseases faster and more accurately than humans to chatbots that can answer patient questions 24/7, AI is poised to transform every aspect of healthcare. But as with any technology, there are risks and challenges that must be addressed. In this paper, we’ll explore the ways in which AI is being used in healthcare today and the potential implications for patients, doctors, and the healthcare industry as a whole. Buckle up, because the future is here, and it’s powered by AI.
Crafting an effective research paper introduction can be challenging, but with the right approach and attention to detail, you can create an introduction that captures the reader’s attention and sets the stage for the rest of the paper.
Whether you choose a general introduction, a quote-based introduction, a surprising fact-based introduction, or an anecdotal introduction, be sure to clearly state your topic and thesis, provide background information, and engage your readers in meaning.
My goal is to help students achieve their full potential by crafting well-written, well-researched, and original papers that will set them apart from their peers.
Starting Your Research Paper: Writing an Introductory Paragraph
- Choosing Your Topic
- Define Keywords
- Planning Your Paper
- Writing an Introductory Paragraph
The Dreaded Introductory Paragraph
Writing the introductory paragraph can be a frustrating and slow process -- but it doesn't have to be. If you planned your paper out, then most of the introductory paragraph is already written. Now you just need a beginning and an end.
Here's an introductory paragraph for a paper I wrote. I started the paper with a factoid, then presented each main point of my paper and then ended with my thesis statement.
- << Previous: Planning Your Paper
- Last Updated: Oct 17, 2023 9:10 AM
- URL: https://libguides.astate.edu/papers
What this handout is about.
This handout will explain the functions of introductions, offer strategies for creating effective introductions, and provide some examples of less effective introductions to avoid.
The role of introductions
Introductions and conclusions can be the most difficult parts of papers to write. Usually when you sit down to respond to an assignment, you have at least some sense of what you want to say in the body of your paper. You might have chosen a few examples you want to use or have an idea that will help you answer the main question of your assignment; these sections, therefore, may not be as hard to write. And it’s fine to write them first! But in your final draft, these middle parts of the paper can’t just come out of thin air; they need to be introduced and concluded in a way that makes sense to your reader.
Your introduction and conclusion act as bridges that transport your readers from their own lives into the “place” of your analysis. If your readers pick up your paper about education in the autobiography of Frederick Douglass, for example, they need a transition to help them leave behind the world of Chapel Hill, television, e-mail, and The Daily Tar Heel and to help them temporarily enter the world of nineteenth-century American slavery. By providing an introduction that helps your readers make a transition between their own world and the issues you will be writing about, you give your readers the tools they need to get into your topic and care about what you are saying. Similarly, once you’ve hooked your readers with the introduction and offered evidence to prove your thesis, your conclusion can provide a bridge to help your readers make the transition back to their daily lives. (See our handout on conclusions .)
Note that what constitutes a good introduction may vary widely based on the kind of paper you are writing and the academic discipline in which you are writing it. If you are uncertain what kind of introduction is expected, ask your instructor.
Why bother writing a good introduction?
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. The opening paragraph of your paper will provide your readers with their initial impressions of your argument, your writing style, and the overall quality of your work. A vague, disorganized, error-filled, off-the-wall, or boring introduction will probably create a negative impression. On the other hand, a concise, engaging, and well-written introduction will start your readers off thinking highly of you, your analytical skills, your writing, and your paper.
Your introduction is an important road map for the rest of your paper. Your introduction conveys a lot of information to your readers. You can let them know what your topic is, why it is important, and how you plan to proceed with your discussion. In many academic disciplines, your introduction should contain a thesis that will assert your main argument. Your introduction should also give the reader a sense of the kinds of information you will use to make that argument and the general organization of the paragraphs and pages that will follow. After reading your introduction, your readers should not have any major surprises in store when they read the main body of your paper.
Ideally, your introduction will make your readers want to read your paper. The introduction should capture your readers’ interest, making them want to read the rest of your paper. Opening with a compelling story, an interesting question, or a vivid example can get your readers to see why your topic matters and serve as an invitation for them to join you for an engaging intellectual conversation (remember, though, that these strategies may not be suitable for all papers and disciplines).
Strategies for writing an effective introduction
Start by thinking about the question (or questions) you are trying to answer. Your entire essay will be a response to this question, and your introduction is the first step toward that end. Your direct answer to the assigned question will be your thesis, and your thesis will likely be included in your introduction, so it is a good idea to use the question as a jumping off point. Imagine that you are assigned the following question:
Drawing on the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass , discuss the relationship between education and slavery in 19th-century America. Consider the following: How did white control of education reinforce slavery? How did Douglass and other enslaved African Americans view education while they endured slavery? And what role did education play in the acquisition of freedom? Most importantly, consider the degree to which education was or was not a major force for social change with regard to slavery.
You will probably refer back to your assignment extensively as you prepare your complete essay, and the prompt itself can also give you some clues about how to approach the introduction. Notice that it starts with a broad statement and then narrows to focus on specific questions from the book. One strategy might be to use a similar model in your own introduction—start off with a big picture sentence or two and then focus in on the details of your argument about Douglass. Of course, a different approach could also be very successful, but looking at the way the professor set up the question can sometimes give you some ideas for how you might answer it. (See our handout on understanding assignments for additional information on the hidden clues in assignments.)
Decide how general or broad your opening should be. Keep in mind that even a “big picture” opening needs to be clearly related to your topic; an opening sentence that said “Human beings, more than any other creatures on earth, are capable of learning” would be too broad for our sample assignment about slavery and education. If you have ever used Google Maps or similar programs, that experience can provide a helpful way of thinking about how broad your opening should be. Imagine that you’re researching Chapel Hill. If what you want to find out is whether Chapel Hill is at roughly the same latitude as Rome, it might make sense to hit that little “minus” sign on the online map until it has zoomed all the way out and you can see the whole globe. If you’re trying to figure out how to get from Chapel Hill to Wrightsville Beach, it might make more sense to zoom in to the level where you can see most of North Carolina (but not the rest of the world, or even the rest of the United States). And if you are looking for the intersection of Ridge Road and Manning Drive so that you can find the Writing Center’s main office, you may need to zoom all the way in. The question you are asking determines how “broad” your view should be. In the sample assignment above, the questions are probably at the “state” or “city” level of generality. When writing, you need to place your ideas in context—but that context doesn’t generally have to be as big as the whole galaxy!
Try writing your introduction last. You may think that you have to write your introduction first, but that isn’t necessarily true, and it isn’t always the most effective way to craft a good introduction. You may find that you don’t know precisely what you are going to argue at the beginning of the writing process. It is perfectly fine to start out thinking that you want to argue a particular point but wind up arguing something slightly or even dramatically different by the time you’ve written most of the paper. The writing process can be an important way to organize your ideas, think through complicated issues, refine your thoughts, and develop a sophisticated argument. However, an introduction written at the beginning of that discovery process will not necessarily reflect what you wind up with at the end. You will need to revise your paper to make sure that the introduction, all of the evidence, and the conclusion reflect the argument you intend. Sometimes it’s easiest to just write up all of your evidence first and then write the introduction last—that way you can be sure that the introduction will match the body of the paper.
Don’t be afraid to write a tentative introduction first and then change it later. Some people find that they need to write some kind of introduction in order to get the writing process started. That’s fine, but if you are one of those people, be sure to return to your initial introduction later and rewrite if necessary.
Open with something that will draw readers in. Consider these options (remembering that they may not be suitable for all kinds of papers):
- an intriguing example —for example, Douglass writes about a mistress who initially teaches him but then ceases her instruction as she learns more about slavery.
- a provocative quotation that is closely related to your argument —for example, Douglass writes that “education and slavery were incompatible with each other.” (Quotes from famous people, inspirational quotes, etc. may not work well for an academic paper; in this example, the quote is from the author himself.)
- a puzzling scenario —for example, Frederick Douglass says of slaves that “[N]othing has been left undone to cripple their intellects, darken their minds, debase their moral nature, obliterate all traces of their relationship to mankind; and yet how wonderfully they have sustained the mighty load of a most frightful bondage, under which they have been groaning for centuries!” Douglass clearly asserts that slave owners went to great lengths to destroy the mental capacities of slaves, yet his own life story proves that these efforts could be unsuccessful.
- a vivid and perhaps unexpected anecdote —for example, “Learning about slavery in the American history course at Frederick Douglass High School, students studied the work slaves did, the impact of slavery on their families, and the rules that governed their lives. We didn’t discuss education, however, until one student, Mary, raised her hand and asked, ‘But when did they go to school?’ That modern high school students could not conceive of an American childhood devoid of formal education speaks volumes about the centrality of education to American youth today and also suggests the significance of the deprivation of education in past generations.”
- a thought-provoking question —for example, given all of the freedoms that were denied enslaved individuals in the American South, why does Frederick Douglass focus his attentions so squarely on education and literacy?
Pay special attention to your first sentence. Start off on the right foot with your readers by making sure that the first sentence actually says something useful and that it does so in an interesting and polished way.
How to evaluate your introduction draft
Ask a friend to read your introduction and then tell you what he or she expects the paper will discuss, what kinds of evidence the paper will use, and what the tone of the paper will be. If your friend is able to predict the rest of your paper accurately, you probably have a good introduction.
Five kinds of less effective introductions
1. The placeholder introduction. When you don’t have much to say on a given topic, it is easy to create this kind of introduction. Essentially, this kind of weaker introduction contains several sentences that are vague and don’t really say much. They exist just to take up the “introduction space” in your paper. If you had something more effective to say, you would probably say it, but in the meantime this paragraph is just a place holder.
Example: Slavery was one of the greatest tragedies in American history. There were many different aspects of slavery. Each created different kinds of problems for enslaved people.
2. The restated question introduction. Restating the question can sometimes be an effective strategy, but it can be easy to stop at JUST restating the question instead of offering a more specific, interesting introduction to your paper. The professor or teaching assistant wrote your question and will be reading many essays in response to it—he or she does not need to read a whole paragraph that simply restates the question.
Example: The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass discusses the relationship between education and slavery in 19th century America, showing how white control of education reinforced slavery and how Douglass and other enslaved African Americans viewed education while they endured. Moreover, the book discusses the role that education played in the acquisition of freedom. Education was a major force for social change with regard to slavery.
3. The Webster’s Dictionary introduction. This introduction begins by giving the dictionary definition of one or more of the words in the assigned question. Anyone can look a word up in the dictionary and copy down what Webster says. If you want to open with a discussion of an important term, it may be far more interesting for you (and your reader) if you develop your own definition of the term in the specific context of your class and assignment. You may also be able to use a definition from one of the sources you’ve been reading for class. Also recognize that the dictionary is also not a particularly authoritative work—it doesn’t take into account the context of your course and doesn’t offer particularly detailed information. If you feel that you must seek out an authority, try to find one that is very relevant and specific. Perhaps a quotation from a source reading might prove better? Dictionary introductions are also ineffective simply because they are so overused. Instructors may see a great many papers that begin in this way, greatly decreasing the dramatic impact that any one of those papers will have.
Example: Webster’s dictionary defines slavery as “the state of being a slave,” as “the practice of owning slaves,” and as “a condition of hard work and subjection.”
4. The “dawn of man” introduction. This kind of introduction generally makes broad, sweeping statements about the relevance of this topic since the beginning of time, throughout the world, etc. It is usually very general (similar to the placeholder introduction) and fails to connect to the thesis. It may employ cliches—the phrases “the dawn of man” and “throughout human history” are examples, and it’s hard to imagine a time when starting with one of these would work. Instructors often find them extremely annoying.
Example: Since the dawn of man, slavery has been a problem in human history.
5. The book report introduction. This introduction is what you had to do for your elementary school book reports. It gives the name and author of the book you are writing about, tells what the book is about, and offers other basic facts about the book. You might resort to this sort of introduction when you are trying to fill space because it’s a familiar, comfortable format. It is ineffective because it offers details that your reader probably already knows and that are irrelevant to the thesis.
Example: Frederick Douglass wrote his autobiography, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave , in the 1840s. It was published in 1986 by Penguin Books. In it, he tells the story of his life.
And now for the conclusion…
Writing an effective introduction can be tough. Try playing around with several different options and choose the one that ends up sounding best to you!
Just as your introduction helps readers make the transition to your topic, your conclusion needs to help them return to their daily lives–but with a lasting sense of how what they have just read is useful or meaningful. Check out our handout on conclusions for tips on ending your paper as effectively as you began it!
We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.
Douglass, Frederick. 1995. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself . New York: Dover.
Make a Gift
- Utility Menu
- Questions about Expos?
- Writing Support for Instructors
The introduction to an academic essay will generally present an analytical question or problem and then offer an answer to that question (the thesis).
Your introduction is also your opportunity to explain to your readers what your essay is about and why they should be interested in reading it. You don’t have to “hook” your readers with a dramatic promise (every other discussion of the topic you’re writing about is completely wrong!) or an exciting fact (the moon can reach 127 degrees Celsius!). Instead, you should use your introduction to explain to your readers why your essay is going to be interesting to read. To do this, you’ll need to frame the question or problem that you’re writing about and explain why this question or problem is important. If you make a convincing case for why your question or problem is worth solving, your readers will be interested in reading on.
While some of the conventions for writing an introduction vary by discipline, a strong introduction for any paper will contain some common elements. You can see these common elements in the sample introductions on this page . In general, your introductions should contain the following elements:
- Orienting Information When you’re writing an essay, it’s helpful to think about what your reader needs to know in order to follow your argument. Your introduction should include enough information so that readers can understand the context for your thesis. For example, if you are analyzing someone else’s argument, you will need to identify that argument and possibly summarize its key points. If you are joining a scholarly conversation about education reform, you will need to provide context for this conversation before explaining what your essay adds to the discussion. But you don’t necessarily have to summarize your sources in detail in your introduction; that information may fit in better later in your essay. When you’re deciding how much context or background information to provide, it can be helpful to think about that information in relation to your thesis. You don’t have to tell readers everything they will need to know to understand your entire essay right away. You just need to give them enough information to be able to understand and appreciate your thesis. For some assignments, you’ll be able to assume that your audience has also read the sources you are analyzing. But even in those cases, you should still offer enough information for readers to know which parts of a source you are talking about. When you’re writing a paper based on your own research, you will need to provide more context about the sources you’re going to discuss. If you’re not sure how much you can assume your audience knows, you should consult your instructor.
An explanation of what’s at stake in your essay, or why anyone would need to read an essay that argues this thesis You will know why your essay is worth writing if you are trying to answer a question that doesn’t have an obvious answer; to propose a solution to a problem without one obvious solution; or to point out something that others may not have noticed that changes the way we consider a phenomenon, source, or idea. In all of these cases, you will be trying to understand something that you think is valuable to understand. But it’s not enough that you know why your essay is worth reading; you also need to explain to your readers why they should care about reading an essay that argues your thesis.
- Your thesis This is what you’re arguing in your essay.
Tips for writing introductions
- If you are writing in a new discipline, you should always make sure to ask about conventions and expectations for introductions, just as you would for any other aspect of the essay. For example, while it may be acceptable to write a two-paragraph (or longer) introduction for your papers in some courses, instructors in other disciplines, such as those in some Government courses, may expect a shorter introduction that includes a preview of the argument that will follow .
- In some disciplines (Government, Economics, and others), it’s common to offer an overview in the introduction of what points you will make in your essay. In other disciplines, you will not be expected to provide this overview in your introduction.
- Avoid writing a very general opening sentence. While it may be true that “Since the dawn of time, people have been telling love stories,” it won’t help you explain what’s interesting about your topic.
- Avoid writing a “funnel” introduction in which you begin with a very broad statement about a topic and move to a narrow statement about that topic. Broad generalizations about a topic will not add to your readers’ understanding of your specific essay topic.
- Avoid beginning with a dictionary definition of a term or concept you will be writing about. If the concept is complicated or unfamiliar to your readers, you will need to define it in detail later in your essay. If it’s not complicated, you can assume your readers already know the definition.
- Avoid offering too much detail in your introduction that a reader could better understand later in the paper.
- Tips for Reading an Assignment Prompt
- Asking Analytical Questions
- What Do Introductions Across the Disciplines Have in Common?
- Anatomy of a Body Paragraph
- Tips for Organizing Your Essay
- Strategies for Essay Writing: Downloadable PDFs
- Brief Guides to Writing in the Disciplines
- Schedule an Appointment
- English Grammar and Language Tutor
- Drop-in hours
- Harvard Guide to Using Sources
- Departmental Writing Fellows
- Writing Advice: The Harvard Writing Tutor Blog
Microsoft 365 Life Hacks > Writing > How to write an introduction for a research paper
How to write an introduction for a research paper
Beginnings are hard. Beginning a research paper is no exception. Many students—and pros—struggle with how to write an introduction for a research paper.
This short guide will describe the purpose of a research paper introduction and how to create a good one.
What is an introduction for a research paper?
Introductions to research papers do a lot of work.
It may seem obvious, but introductions are always placed at the beginning of a paper. They guide your reader from a general subject area to the narrow topic that your paper covers. They also explain your paper’s:
- Scope: The topic you’ll be covering
- Context: The background of your topic
- Importance: Why your research matters in the context of an industry or the world
Your introduction will cover a lot of ground. However, it will only be half of a page to a few pages long. The length depends on the size of your paper as a whole. In many cases, the introduction will be shorter than all of the other sections of your paper.
Write with Confidence using Editor
Elevate your writing with real-time, intelligent assistance
Why is an introduction vital to a research paper?
The introduction to your research paper isn’t just important. It’s critical.
Your readers don’t know what your research paper is about from the title. That’s where your introduction comes in. A good introduction will:
- Help your reader understand your topic’s background
- Explain why your research paper is worth reading
- Offer a guide for navigating the rest of the piece
- Pique your reader’s interest
Without a clear introduction, your readers will struggle. They may feel confused when they start reading your paper. They might even give up entirely. Your introduction will ground them and prepare them for the in-depth research to come.
What should you include in an introduction for a research paper?
Research paper introductions are always unique. After all, research is original by definition. However, they often contain six essential items. These are:
- An overview of the topic. Start with a general overview of your topic. Narrow the overview until you address your paper’s specific subject. Then, mention questions or concerns you had about the case. Note that you will address them in the publication.
- Prior research. Your introduction is the place to review other conclusions on your topic. Include both older scholars and modern scholars. This background information shows that you are aware of prior research. It also introduces past findings to those who might not have that expertise.
- A rationale for your paper. Explain why your topic needs to be addressed right now. If applicable, connect it to current issues. Additionally, you can show a problem with former theories or reveal a gap in current research. No matter how you do it, a good rationale will interest your readers and demonstrate why they must read the rest of your paper.
- Describe the methodology you used. Recount your processes to make your paper more credible. Lay out your goal and the questions you will address. Reveal how you conducted research and describe how you measured results. Moreover, explain why you made key choices.
- A thesis statement. Your main introduction should end with a thesis statement. This statement summarizes the ideas that will run through your entire research article. It should be straightforward and clear.
- An outline. Introductions often conclude with an outline. Your layout should quickly review what you intend to cover in the following sections. Think of it as a roadmap, guiding your reader to the end of your paper.
These six items are emphasized more or less, depending on your field. For example, a physics research paper might emphasize methodology. An English journal article might highlight the overview.
Three tips for writing your introduction
We don’t just want you to learn how to write an introduction for a research paper. We want you to learn how to make it shine.
There are three things you can do that will make it easier to write a great introduction. You can:
- Write your introduction last. An introduction summarizes all of the things you’ve learned from your research. While it can feel good to get your preface done quickly, you should write the rest of your paper first. Then, you’ll find it easy to create a clear overview.
- Include a strong quotation or story upfront. You want your paper to be full of substance. But that doesn’t mean it should feel boring or flat. Add a relevant quotation or surprising anecdote to the beginning of your introduction. This technique will pique the interest of your reader and leave them wanting more.
- Be concise. Research papers cover complex topics. To help your readers, try to write as clearly as possible. Use concise sentences. Check for confusing grammar or syntax . Read your introduction out loud to catch awkward phrases. Before you finish your paper, be sure to proofread, too. Mistakes can seem unprofessional.
Get started with Microsoft 365
It’s the Office you know, plus the tools to help you work better together, so you can get more done—anytime, anywhere.
Topics in this article
More articles like this one.
How to pinpoint (and avoid) pleonasm
Learn what pleonasms are and why they should be avoided. Get tips on how to avoid using them in your writing.
How capitalization works with colons
Not sure when it’s appropriate to capitalize a letter after a colon? Learn how capitalization works with colons in different writing situations.
What is chiasmus and how do you use it in your writing?
A chiasmus is no longer a commonly used literary device, but it can help you support a point through repetition. Learn how to use chiasmus in your writing.
What is a subordinate clause?
You see subordinate clauses, also known as dependent clauses, every day when you read and write. Learn about subordinate clauses so you can use them correctly.
Everything you need to achieve more in less time
Get powerful productivity and security apps with Microsoft 365
Explore Other Categories
Home » Research Paper Introduction – Writing Guide and Examples
Research Paper Introduction – Writing Guide and Examples
Table of Contents
Research Paper Introduction
Research paper introduction is the first section of a research paper that provides an overview of the study, its purpose, and the research question (s) or hypothesis (es) being investigated. It typically includes background information about the topic, a review of previous research in the field, and a statement of the research objectives. The introduction is intended to provide the reader with a clear understanding of the research problem, why it is important, and how the study will contribute to existing knowledge in the field. It also sets the tone for the rest of the paper and helps to establish the author’s credibility and expertise on the subject.
How to Write Research Paper Introduction
Writing an introduction for a research paper can be challenging because it sets the tone for the entire paper. Here are some steps to follow to help you write an effective research paper introduction:
- Start with a hook : Begin your introduction with an attention-grabbing statement, a question, or a surprising fact that will make the reader interested in reading further.
- Provide background information: After the hook, provide background information on the topic. This information should give the reader a general idea of what the topic is about and why it is important.
- State the research problem: Clearly state the research problem or question that the paper addresses. This should be done in a concise and straightforward manner.
- State the research objectives: After stating the research problem, clearly state the research objectives. This will give the reader an idea of what the paper aims to achieve.
- Provide a brief overview of the paper: At the end of the introduction, provide a brief overview of the paper. This should include a summary of the main points that will be discussed in the paper.
- Revise and refine: Finally, revise and refine your introduction to ensure that it is clear, concise, and engaging.
Structure of Research Paper Introduction
The following is a typical structure for a research paper introduction:
- Background Information: This section provides an overview of the topic of the research paper, including relevant background information and any previous research that has been done on the topic. It helps to give the reader a sense of the context for the study.
- Problem Statement: This section identifies the specific problem or issue that the research paper is addressing. It should be clear and concise, and it should articulate the gap in knowledge that the study aims to fill.
- Research Question/Hypothesis : This section states the research question or hypothesis that the study aims to answer. It should be specific and focused, and it should clearly connect to the problem statement.
- Significance of the Study: This section explains why the research is important and what the potential implications of the study are. It should highlight the contribution that the research makes to the field.
- Methodology: This section describes the research methods that were used to conduct the study. It should be detailed enough to allow the reader to understand how the study was conducted and to evaluate the validity of the results.
- Organization of the Paper : This section provides a brief overview of the structure of the research paper. It should give the reader a sense of what to expect in each section of the paper.
Research Paper Introduction Examples
Research Paper Introduction Examples could be:
Example 1: In recent years, the use of artificial intelligence (AI) has become increasingly prevalent in various industries, including healthcare. AI algorithms are being developed to assist with medical diagnoses, treatment recommendations, and patient monitoring. However, as the use of AI in healthcare grows, ethical concerns regarding privacy, bias, and accountability have emerged. This paper aims to explore the ethical implications of AI in healthcare and propose recommendations for addressing these concerns.
Example 2: Climate change is one of the most pressing issues facing our planet today. The increasing concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has resulted in rising temperatures, changing weather patterns, and other environmental impacts. In this paper, we will review the scientific evidence on climate change, discuss the potential consequences of inaction, and propose solutions for mitigating its effects.
Example 3: The rise of social media has transformed the way we communicate and interact with each other. While social media platforms offer many benefits, including increased connectivity and access to information, they also present numerous challenges. In this paper, we will examine the impact of social media on mental health, privacy, and democracy, and propose solutions for addressing these issues.
Example 4: The use of renewable energy sources has become increasingly important in the face of climate change and environmental degradation. While renewable energy technologies offer many benefits, including reduced greenhouse gas emissions and energy independence, they also present numerous challenges. In this paper, we will assess the current state of renewable energy technology, discuss the economic and political barriers to its adoption, and propose solutions for promoting the widespread use of renewable energy.
Purpose of Research Paper Introduction
The introduction section of a research paper serves several important purposes, including:
- Providing context: The introduction should give readers a general understanding of the topic, including its background, significance, and relevance to the field.
- Presenting the research question or problem: The introduction should clearly state the research question or problem that the paper aims to address. This helps readers understand the purpose of the study and what the author hopes to accomplish.
- Reviewing the literature: The introduction should summarize the current state of knowledge on the topic, highlighting the gaps and limitations in existing research. This shows readers why the study is important and necessary.
- Outlining the scope and objectives of the study: The introduction should describe the scope and objectives of the study, including what aspects of the topic will be covered, what data will be collected, and what methods will be used.
- Previewing the main findings and conclusions : The introduction should provide a brief overview of the main findings and conclusions that the study will present. This helps readers anticipate what they can expect to learn from the paper.
When to Write Research Paper Introduction
The introduction of a research paper is typically written after the research has been conducted and the data has been analyzed. This is because the introduction should provide an overview of the research problem, the purpose of the study, and the research questions or hypotheses that will be investigated.
Once you have a clear understanding of the research problem and the questions that you want to explore, you can begin to write the introduction. It’s important to keep in mind that the introduction should be written in a way that engages the reader and provides a clear rationale for the study. It should also provide context for the research by reviewing relevant literature and explaining how the study fits into the larger field of research.
Advantages of Research Paper Introduction
The introduction of a research paper has several advantages, including:
- Establishing the purpose of the research: The introduction provides an overview of the research problem, question, or hypothesis, and the objectives of the study. This helps to clarify the purpose of the research and provide a roadmap for the reader to follow.
- Providing background information: The introduction also provides background information on the topic, including a review of relevant literature and research. This helps the reader understand the context of the study and how it fits into the broader field of research.
- Demonstrating the significance of the research: The introduction also explains why the research is important and relevant. This helps the reader understand the value of the study and why it is worth reading.
- Setting expectations: The introduction sets the tone for the rest of the paper and prepares the reader for what is to come. This helps the reader understand what to expect and how to approach the paper.
- Grabbing the reader’s attention: A well-written introduction can grab the reader’s attention and make them interested in reading further. This is important because it can help to keep the reader engaged and motivated to read the rest of the paper.
- Creating a strong first impression: The introduction is the first part of the research paper that the reader will see, and it can create a strong first impression. A well-written introduction can make the reader more likely to take the research seriously and view it as credible.
- Establishing the author’s credibility: The introduction can also establish the author’s credibility as a researcher. By providing a clear and thorough overview of the research problem and relevant literature, the author can demonstrate their expertise and knowledge in the field.
- Providing a structure for the paper: The introduction can also provide a structure for the rest of the paper. By outlining the main sections and sub-sections of the paper, the introduction can help the reader navigate the paper and find the information they are looking for.
About the author
Researcher, Academic Writer, Web developer
You may also like
Figures in Research Paper – Examples and Guide
Delimitations in Research – Types, Examples and...
Research Paper – Structure, Examples and Writing...
Ethical Considerations – Types, Examples and...
APA Table of Contents – Format and Example
Research Paper Title – Writing Guide and Example
- PRO Courses Guides New Tech Help Pro Expert Videos About wikiHow Pro Upgrade Sign In
- EDIT Edit this Article
- EXPLORE Tech Help Pro About Us Random Article Quizzes Request a New Article Community Dashboard This Or That Game Popular Categories Arts and Entertainment Artwork Books Movies Computers and Electronics Computers Phone Skills Technology Hacks Health Men's Health Mental Health Women's Health Relationships Dating Love Relationship Issues Hobbies and Crafts Crafts Drawing Games Education & Communication Communication Skills Personal Development Studying Personal Care and Style Fashion Hair Care Personal Hygiene Youth Personal Care School Stuff Dating All Categories Arts and Entertainment Finance and Business Home and Garden Relationship Quizzes Cars & Other Vehicles Food and Entertaining Personal Care and Style Sports and Fitness Computers and Electronics Health Pets and Animals Travel Education & Communication Hobbies and Crafts Philosophy and Religion Work World Family Life Holidays and Traditions Relationships Youth
- Browse Articles
- Learn Something New
- Quizzes Hot
- This Or That Game New
- Train Your Brain
- Explore More
- Support wikiHow
- About wikiHow
- Log in / Sign up
- Education and Communications
- College University and Postgraduate
- Academic Writing
- Research Papers
How to Write a Research Introduction
Last Updated: June 23, 2023 Fact Checked
This article was co-authored by Megan Morgan, PhD . Megan Morgan is a Graduate Program Academic Advisor in the School of Public & International Affairs at the University of Georgia. She earned her PhD in English from the University of Georgia in 2015. There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 2,641,947 times.
The introduction to a research paper can be the most challenging part of the paper to write. The length of the introduction will vary depending on the type of research paper you are writing. An introduction should announce your topic, provide context and a rationale for your work, before stating your research questions and hypothesis. Well-written introductions set the tone for the paper, catch the reader's interest, and communicate the hypothesis or thesis statement.
Introducing the Topic of the Paper
- In scientific papers this is sometimes known as an "inverted triangle", where you start with the broadest material at the start, before zooming in on the specifics.  X Research source
- The sentence "Throughout the 20th century, our views of life on other planets have drastically changed" introduces a topic, but does so in broad terms.
- It provides the reader with an indication of the content of the essay and encourages them to read on.
- For example, if you were writing a paper about the behaviour of mice when exposed to a particular substance, you would include the word "mice", and the scientific name of the relevant compound in the first sentences.
- If you were writing a history paper about the impact of the First World War on gender relations in Britain, you should mention those key words in your first few lines.
- This is especially important if you are attempting to develop a new conceptualization that uses language and terminology your readers may be unfamiliar with.
- If you use an anecdote ensure that is short and highly relevant for your research. It has to function in the same way as an alternative opening, namely to announce the topic of your research paper to your reader.
- For example, if you were writing a sociology paper about re-offending rates among young offenders, you could include a brief story of one person whose story reflects and introduces your topic.
- This kind of approach is generally not appropriate for the introduction to a natural or physical sciences research paper where the writing conventions are different.
Establishing the Context for Your Paper
- It is important to be concise in the introduction, so provide an overview on recent developments in the primary research rather than a lengthy discussion.
- You can follow the "inverted triangle" principle to focus in from the broader themes to those to which you are making a direct contribution with your paper.
- A strong literature review presents important background information to your own research and indicates the importance of the field.
- By making clear reference to existing work you can demonstrate explicitly the specific contribution you are making to move the field forward.
- You can identify a gap in the existing scholarship and explain how you are addressing it and moving understanding forward.
- For example, if you are writing a scientific paper you could stress the merits of the experimental approach or models you have used.
- Stress what is novel in your research and the significance of your new approach, but don't give too much detail in the introduction.
- A stated rationale could be something like: "the study evaluates the previously unknown anti-inflammatory effects of a topical compound in order to evaluate its potential clinical uses".
Specifying Your Research Questions and Hypothesis
- The research question or questions generally come towards the end of the introduction, and should be concise and closely focused.
- The research question might recall some of the key words established in the first few sentences and the title of your paper.
- An example of a research question could be "what were the consequences of the North American Free Trade Agreement on the Mexican export economy?"
- This could be honed further to be specific by referring to a particular element of the Free Trade Agreement and the impact on a particular industry in Mexico, such as clothing manufacture.
- A good research question should shape a problem into a testable hypothesis.
- If possible try to avoid using the word "hypothesis" and rather make this implicit in your writing. This can make your writing appear less formulaic.
- In a scientific paper, giving a clear one-sentence overview of your results and their relation to your hypothesis makes the information clear and accessible.  X Trustworthy Source PubMed Central Journal archive from the U.S. National Institutes of Health Go to source
- An example of a hypothesis could be "mice deprived of food for the duration of the study were expected to become more lethargic than those fed normally".
- This is not always necessary and you should pay attention to the writing conventions in your discipline.
- In a natural sciences paper, for example, there is a fairly rigid structure which you will be following.
- A humanities or social science paper will most likely present more opportunities to deviate in how you structure your paper.
Research Introduction Help
- Use your research papers' outline to help you decide what information to include when writing an introduction. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- Consider drafting your introduction after you have already completed the rest of your research paper. Writing introductions last can help ensure that you don't leave out any major points. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- Avoid emotional or sensational introductions; these can create distrust in the reader. Thanks Helpful 50 Not Helpful 12
- Generally avoid using personal pronouns in your introduction, such as "I," "me," "we," "us," "my," "mine," or "our." Thanks Helpful 31 Not Helpful 7
- Don't overwhelm the reader with an over-abundance of information. Keep the introduction as concise as possible by saving specific details for the body of your paper. Thanks Helpful 24 Not Helpful 14
You Might Also Like
- ↑ https://library.sacredheart.edu/c.php?g=29803&p=185916
- ↑ https://www.aresearchguide.com/inverted-pyramid-structure-in-writing.html
- ↑ https://libguides.usc.edu/writingguide/introduction
- ↑ https://writing.wisc.edu/Handbook/PlanResearchPaper.html
- ↑ https://dept.writing.wisc.edu/wac/writing-an-introduction-for-a-scientific-paper/
- ↑ https://writing.wisc.edu/handbook/assignments/planresearchpaper/
- ↑ http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3178846/
About This Article
To introduce your research paper, use the first 1-2 sentences to describe your general topic, such as “women in World War I.” Include and define keywords, such as “gender relations,” to show your reader where you’re going. Mention previous research into the topic with a phrase like, “Others have studied…”, then transition into what your contribution will be and why it’s necessary. Finally, state the questions that your paper will address and propose your “answer” to them as your thesis statement. For more information from our English Ph.D. co-author about how to craft a strong hypothesis and thesis, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No
- Send fan mail to authors
Reader Success Stories
Oct 5, 2018
Did this article help you?
May 9, 2021
Oct 1, 2016
May 14, 2018
Leslie Mae Cansana
Sep 22, 2016
- Do Not Sell or Share My Info
- Not Selling Info
Don’t miss out! Sign up for
Have a language expert improve your writing
Run a free plagiarism check in 10 minutes, generate accurate citations for free.
- Knowledge Base
- Research paper
How to Create a Structured Research Paper Outline | Example
Published on August 7, 2022 by Courtney Gahan . Revised on August 15, 2023.
A research paper outline is a useful tool to aid in the writing process , providing a structure to follow with all information to be included in the paper clearly organized.
A quality outline can make writing your research paper more efficient by helping to:
- Organize your thoughts
- Understand the flow of information and how ideas are related
- Ensure nothing is forgotten
A research paper outline can also give your teacher an early idea of the final product.
Table of contents
Research paper outline example, how to write a research paper outline, formatting your research paper outline, language in research paper outlines.
- Definition of measles
- Rise in cases in recent years in places the disease was previously eliminated or had very low rates of infection
- Figures: Number of cases per year on average, number in recent years. Relate to immunization
- Symptoms and timeframes of disease
- Risk of fatality, including statistics
- How measles is spread
- Immunization procedures in different regions
- Different regions, focusing on the arguments from those against immunization
- Immunization figures in affected regions
- High number of cases in non-immunizing regions
- Illnesses that can result from measles virus
- Fatal cases of other illnesses after patient contracted measles
- Summary of arguments of different groups
- Summary of figures and relationship with recent immunization debate
- Which side of the argument appears to be correct?
Prevent plagiarism. Run a free check.
Follow these steps to start your research paper outline:
- Decide on the subject of the paper
- Write down all the ideas you want to include or discuss
- Organize related ideas into sub-groups
- Arrange your ideas into a hierarchy: What should the reader learn first? What is most important? Which idea will help end your paper most effectively?
- Create headings and subheadings that are effective
- Format the outline in either alphanumeric, full-sentence or decimal format
There are three different kinds of research paper outline: alphanumeric, full-sentence and decimal outlines. The differences relate to formatting and style of writing.
An alphanumeric outline is most commonly used. It uses Roman numerals, capitalized letters, arabic numerals, lowercase letters to organize the flow of information. Text is written with short notes rather than full sentences.
- Sub-point of sub-point 1
Essentially the same as the alphanumeric outline, but with the text written in full sentences rather than short points.
- Additional sub-point to conclude discussion of point of evidence introduced in point A
A decimal outline is similar in format to the alphanumeric outline, but with a different numbering system: 1, 1.1, 1.2, etc. Text is written as short notes rather than full sentences.
- 1.1.1 Sub-point of first point
- 1.1.2 Sub-point of first point
- 1.2 Second point
To write an effective research paper outline, it is important to pay attention to language. This is especially important if it is one you will show to your teacher or be assessed on.
There are four main considerations: parallelism, coordination, subordination and division.
Parallelism: Be consistent with grammatical form
Parallel structure or parallelism is the repetition of a particular grammatical form within a sentence, or in this case, between points and sub-points. This simply means that if the first point is a verb , the sub-point should also be a verb.
Example of parallelism:
- Include different regions, focusing on the different arguments from those against immunization
Coordination: Be aware of each point’s weight
Your chosen subheadings should hold the same significance as each other, as should all first sub-points, secondary sub-points, and so on.
Example of coordination:
- Include immunization figures in affected regions
- Illnesses that can result from the measles virus
Subordination: Work from general to specific
Subordination refers to the separation of general points from specific. Your main headings should be quite general, and each level of sub-point should become more specific.
Example of subordination:
Division: break information into sub-points.
Your headings should be divided into two or more subsections. There is no limit to how many subsections you can include under each heading, but keep in mind that the information will be structured into a paragraph during the writing stage, so you should not go overboard with the number of sub-points.
Ready to start writing or looking for guidance on a different step in the process? Read our step-by-step guide on how to write a research paper .
Cite this Scribbr article
If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the “Cite this Scribbr article” button to automatically add the citation to our free Citation Generator.
Gahan, C. (2023, August 15). How to Create a Structured Research Paper Outline | Example. Scribbr. Retrieved November 15, 2023, from https://www.scribbr.com/research-paper/outline/
Is this article helpful?
Other students also liked, research paper format | apa, mla, & chicago templates, writing a research paper introduction | step-by-step guide, writing a research paper conclusion | step-by-step guide, what is your plagiarism score.
Research Paper Guide
Research Paper Example
Research Paper Examples - Free Sample Papers for Different Formats!
Published on: Nov 27, 2017
Last updated on: Nov 6, 2023
People also read
Research Paper Writing - A Step by Step Guide
Guide to Creating Effective Research Paper Outline
Interesting Research Paper Topics for 2023
Research Proposal Writing - A Step-by-Step Guide
How to Start a Research Paper - 7 Easy Steps
How to Write an Abstract - A Step by Step Guide
Learn How To Write A Literature Review In Simple Steps
Qualitative Research - Methods, Types, and Examples
8 Types of Qualitative Research - Overview & Examples
Qualitative vs Quantitative Research - Learning the Basics
Psychology Research Topics - 220+ Ideas
How to Write a Hypothesis In 7 simple Steps: Examples and Tips!
20+ Types of Research With Examples - A Detailed Guide
Understanding Quantitative Research - Types & Data Collection Techniques
230+ Sociology Research Topics & Ideas for Students
How to Cite a Research Paper - A Complete Guide
Excellent History Research Paper Topics- 300+ Ideas
How to Write a Research Methodology for a Research Paper
Share this article
Crafting a comprehensive research paper can be daunting. Understanding diverse citation styles and various subject areas presents a challenge for many.
Without clear examples, students often feel lost and overwhelmed, unsure of how to start or which style fits their subject.
Explore our collection of expertly written research paper examples. We’ve covered various citation styles and a diverse range of subjects.
So, read on!
On This Page On This Page
Research Paper Example for Different Formats
Following a specific formatting style is essential while writing a research paper . Knowing the conventions and guidelines for each format can help you in creating a perfect paper. Here we have gathered examples of research paper for most commonly applied citation styles :
Social Media and Social Media Marketing: A Literature Review
APA Research Paper Example
APA (American Psychological Association) style is commonly used in social sciences, psychology, and education. This format is recognized for its clear and concise writing, emphasis on proper citations, and orderly presentation of ideas.
Here are some research paper examples in APA style:
Research Paper Example APA 7th Edition
Research Paper Example MLA
MLA (Modern Language Association) style is frequently employed in humanities disciplines, including literature, languages, and cultural studies. An MLA research paper might explore literature analysis, linguistic studies, or historical research within the humanities.
Here is an example:
Found Voices: Carl Sagan
Research Paper Example Chicago
Chicago style is utilized in various fields like history, arts, and social sciences. Research papers in Chicago style could delve into historical events, artistic analyses, or social science inquiries.
Here is a research paper formatted in Chicago style:
Chicago Research Paper Sample
Research Paper Example Harvard
Harvard style is widely used in business, management, and some social sciences. Research papers in Harvard style might address business strategies, case studies, or social policies.
View this sample Harvard style paper here:
Harvard Research Paper Sample
Examples for Different Research Paper Parts
A research paper has different parts. Each part is important for the overall success of the paper. Chapters in a research paper must be written correctly, using a certain format and structure.
The following are examples of how different sections of the research paper can be written.
The research proposal acts as a detailed plan or roadmap for your study, outlining the focus of your research and its significance. It's essential as it not only guides your research but also persuades others about the value of your study.
Example of Research Proposal
An abstract serves as a concise overview of your entire research paper. It provides a quick insight into the main elements of your study. It summarizes your research's purpose, methods, findings, and conclusions in a brief format.
Research Paper Example Abstract
A literature review summarizes the existing research on your study's topic, showcasing what has already been explored. This section adds credibility to your own research by analyzing and summarizing prior studies related to your topic.
Literature Review Research Paper Example
The methodology section functions as a detailed explanation of how you conducted your research. This part covers the tools, techniques, and steps used to collect and analyze data for your study.
Methods Section of Research Paper Example
How to Write the Methods Section of a Research Paper
The conclusion summarizes your findings, their significance and the impact of your research. This section outlines the key takeaways and the broader implications of your study's results.
Research Paper Conclusion Example
Research Paper Examples for Different Fields
Research papers can be about any subject that needs a detailed study. The following examples show research papers for different subjects.
History Research Paper Sample
Preparing a history research paper involves investigating and presenting information about past events. This may include exploring perspectives, analyzing sources, and constructing a narrative that explains the significance of historical events.
View this history research paper sample:
Many Faces of Generalissimo Fransisco Franco
Sociology Research Paper Sample
In sociology research, statistics and data are harnessed to explore societal issues within a particular region or group. These findings are thoroughly analyzed to gain an understanding of the structure and dynamics present within these communities.
Here is a sample:
A Descriptive Statistical Analysis within the State of Virginia
Science Fair Research Paper Sample
A science research paper involves explaining a scientific experiment or project. It includes outlining the purpose, procedures, observations, and results of the experiment in a clear, logical manner.
Here are some examples:
Science Fair Paper Format
What Do I Need To Do For The Science Fair?
Psychology Research Paper Sample
Writing a psychology research paper involves studying human behavior and mental processes. This process includes conducting experiments, gathering data, and analyzing results to understand the human mind, emotions, and behavior.
Here is an example psychology paper:
The Effects of Food Deprivation on Concentration and Perseverance
Art History Research Paper Sample
Studying art history includes examining artworks, understanding their historical context, and learning about the artists. This helps analyze and interpret how art has evolved over various periods and regions.
Check out this sample paper analyzing European art and impacts:
European Art History: A Primer
Research Paper Example Outline
Before you plan on writing a well-researched paper, make a rough draft. An outline can be a great help when it comes to organizing vast amounts of research material for your paper.
Here is an outline of a research paper example:
Here is a downloadable sample of a standard research paper outline:
Research Paper Outline
Want to create the perfect outline for your paper? Check out this in-depth guide on creating a research paper outline for a structured paper!
Good Research Paper Examples for Students
Here are some more samples of research paper for students to learn from:
Fiscal Research Center - Action Plan
Qualitative Research Paper Example
Research Paper Example Introduction
How to Write a Research Paper Example
Research Paper Example for High School
Now that you have explored the research paper examples, you can start working on your research project. Hopefully, these examples will help you understand the writing process for a research paper.
If you're facing challenges with your writing requirements, you can hire our essay writing service .
Our team is experienced in delivering perfectly formatted, 100% original research papers. So, whether you need help with a part of research or an entire paper, our experts are here to deliver.
So, why miss out? Place your ‘ write my research paper ’ request today and get a top-quality research paper!
Nova A. (Literature, Marketing)
Nova Allison is a Digital Content Strategist with over eight years of experience. Nova has also worked as a technical and scientific writer. She is majorly involved in developing and reviewing online content plans that engage and resonate with audiences. Nova has a passion for writing that engages and informs her readers.
Paper Due? Why Suffer? That’s our Job!
We value your privacy
Website Data Collection
Are you sure you want to cancel?
Your preferences have not been saved.
- A Research Guide
- Research Paper Guide
How to Write an Introduction for a Research Paper
- Purpose of intro
- Key elements
- Writing an effective intro
- Step-by-step guide
- Research intro checklist
- Introduction formats
- Good and bad examples
An introductory paragraph is vital for any academic paper. It allows you to show reviewers why your research topic is worth reading about. In this article, we will explore the tips to make a good introduction paragraph. You’ll get a step-by-step tutorial on writing your paper’s informative yet laconic intro.
What is the purpose of an introduction?
The purpose of a research paper intro is to provide an overview and context for the study being conducted. A research paper engages the reader, establishes the importance of the research topic, and outlines the study’s objectives and scope.
The paper intro also presents the question or hypothesis and summarizes relevant background characteristics and existing literature.
An effective introduction helps the reader understand the significance and relevance of the research paper and sets the stage for the subsequent sections. The introduction captures the reader’s attention and creates a foundation for understanding the research and its contributions.
The key elements of a scientific paper introduction
The introduction of your research paper should include several key elements, including the problem statement, hypothesis/thesis/research question, purpose, and background.
Let’s explore each of these parts of the research paper intro in detail:
- Problem Statement : identifies the specific issue or gap in knowledge that the research paper aims to address. It highlights the problem’s relevance, significance, and potential impact on the field of study. The problem statement sets the stage for the research by clearly stating the project or research gap.
- Hypothesis / Thesis / Research Question : a paper hypothesis predicts the relationship between variables, a thesis statement presents the main argument or claim, and a research question seeks to put a specific aspect on a research paper.
- Purpose: describes the overall objective or goal the research paper aims to achieve. It outlines the researcher’s intention and provides a clear direction for the investigation. The purpose statement typically explains why the research is being conducted and what the researcher hopes to accomplish by the end of the study.
- Background : provides the necessary context and information to familiarize readers with the research paper. It presents a concise review of the relevant literature, previous studies, and theoretical frameworks that have shaped the understanding of the problem.
Shortly, the introduction section of a research paper combines these key elements to introduce the problem, state the hypothesis/thesis/research question, define the paper’s purpose, and provide the background necessary for readers to understand the significance and context of the study.
How to write an effective intro?
To start an introduction for a research paper, consider the following steps:
- Hook the reader : begin with a compelling opening sentence or a thought-provoking statement that grabs the reader’s attention. This could be an interesting fact, a relevant anecdote, or a surprising statistic related to your research paper.
- Provide background information : offer a brief overview of the paper and its significance in the field. This helps to improve the structure of an introduction and demonstrate why it is important to investigate the point further in a paper.
- State the problem : clearly articulate the problem statement or research gap your study aims to address. Explain the specific issue or gap in knowledge that your research paper seeks to explore, emphasizing its relevance and potential impact.
- Present the research question/hypothesis/thesis : formulate a concise and focused research question, hypothesis, or thesis statement in the intro that guides your scientific paper. This sets the direction for your research and provides a clear focus for the reader.
- Outline the purpose and objectives : explain the overall purpose of your research paper and the specific objectives you aim to achieve. This helps readers understand why your study is being conducted and what you hope to accomplish.
- Preview the structure : briefly introduce the organization and structure of your research paper. Mention the main sections or components that will be covered, giving readers a sense of what to expect as they continue reading the paper.
Remember, the intro should be concise and engaging, providing a clear roadmap for your research and capturing the reader’s interest from the very beginning. There are different ways to start a research paper, and you can pick the intro that suits you best.
Writing an introduction to a research paper: key steps
Here’s a short guide on getting you started with an introduction:
- Start with an attention-grabbing opening : begin your intro with a captivating statement, a relevant quote, a surprising fact, or an intriguing anecdote. This will engage the reader’s interest and make them curious about your research paper.
- Provide background information : write a brief overview of the research topic to provide context and establish the importance of the subject matter. Discuss key concepts, definitions, or historical background relevant to your study. This section should help the reader understand the broader context of your research paper.
- State the research problem or gap : clearly define the specific problem or research gap your study aims to address. Explain why this problem is significant and deserving of investigation. This helps the reader understand the purpose and relevance of your research paper.
- Present your research question or thesis statement : formulate a clear and concise research question, hypothesis, or thesis statement that serves as the central focus of your study. This statement should guide your research paper and articulate your introduction format.
- Outline the structure of the paper : write a brief preview of your research paper’s main sections and organization. This helps the reader understand the flow of your paper and what to expect in each section. Provide a roadmap by mentioning the key points or arguments discussed in subsequent sections.
By following these steps, you can create an introduction that grabs the reader’s attention and sets the stage for the rest of your research paper, clearly understanding your study’s problem, purpose, and structure.
Writing a checklist for a proper college paper introduction
Here’s a short writing checklist for a research paper intro:
- Attention-grabbing opening:
- Does the research paper introduction example start with a compelling statement, relevant quote, surprising fact, or intriguing anecdote?
- Is the opening engaging enough to capture readers’ attention and make them curious about the research paper?
- Background information:
- Have you provided a concise overview of the research topic, including relevant definitions, concepts, or historical context?
- Does the background information help the reader understand the broader context and importance of the subject matter?
- Clear problem statement:
- Have you clearly stated the specific problem or research gap that your study aims to address?
- Does a research introduction have a well-defined, strong, and significant problem statement?
- Research question or thesis statement:
- Have you presented a clear and concise research question, hypothesis, or thesis statement that guides your paper?
- Does the research question or thesis statement align with the problem statement and set the direction for your research paper?
- Structure and organization:
- Did you write a brief overview of the structure and organization of the research paper?
- Does the introduction outline the main sections or components covered in the paper?
- Coherence and flow:
- Is the intro logically organized? Does it have smooth transitions between ideas and paragraphs?
- Does the intro flow smoothly from the opening to the problem statement, research question, and purpose?
- Conciseness and clarity:
- Have you kept the introduction concise, avoiding unnecessary details or tangents?
- Is the language clear, avoiding jargon or overly technical terms that may confuse the reader?
- Relevance and significance:
- Have you clearly explained the relevance and significance of the research topic and the paper’s potential impact?
- Does the introduction effectively communicate why your research is important and worth exploring?
This checklist will help you to review your research essay introduction to ensure it effectively grabs the reader’s attention, provides necessary background information, states the problem clearly, presents a focused research question or thesis statement, outlines the structure of the paper, and maintains coherence and clarity throughout.
Types of intro formats
Different academic disciplines may follow specific formatting styles for research introduction, such as MLA (Modern Language Association), APA (American Psychological Association), Chicago, ASA (American Sociological Association), and AMA (American Medical Association).
To write an introduction paragraph, you should understand the differences between the most common academic formats for your future paper.
MLA (Modern Language Association):
- Primarily used in humanities, literature, and arts disciplines.
- Features in-text citations using the author-page format (e.g., “Smith 45”).
APA (American Psychological Association):
- Commonly used in social sciences, psychology, and education.
- Utilizes in-text citations with the author-date format (e.g., “Smith, 2019”).
- Often used in history, humanities, and some social sciences.
- Offers two styles: the notes-bibliography system and the author-date system.
- Includes a bibliography page to list all sources used.
ASA (American Sociological Association):
- Primarily used in sociology and related social sciences.
- Utilizes in-text citations with the author-date format (e.g., “Smith 2019”).
AMA (American Medical Association):
- Commonly used in medical, health, and biological sciences.
- Features in-text citations with a superscript number (e.g., “Smith^1”).
- Emphasizes accuracy and consistency in citation style.
All formatting styles mean a set of rules and guidelines for citing sources, formatting headings, page layout, and referencing. It’s important to consult the specific style guide or manual associated with your field of study before you write.
These might include guidelines provided by your institution to ensure proper paper formatting and adherence of a research introduction to the chosen style.
Research introduction sample
Now that you know how the idea goes in the introduction of a research paper, let’s see the practical examples of good and bad introductions and discuss their differences.
Title: “Exploring the Impact of Climate Change on Biodiversity: A Comprehensive Analysis”
Climate change is a pressing global issue that has far-reaching consequences for our planet. Its effects on various ecosystems, particularly biodiversity loss, have attracted significant attention from researchers and policymakers alike.
This research paper aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of the impact of climate change on biodiversity, focusing on key regions and species vulnerable to these changes. By examining the latest scientific literature, empirical studies, and expert opinions, we will explore the complex interplay between climate change and biodiversity loss, shed light on the underlying mechanisms, and propose potential mitigation strategies.
Understanding these dynamics is crucial for developing effective conservation strategies and promoting sustainable practices that will help preserve our planet’s invaluable natural heritage.
Title: “Climate Change and Biodiversity”
Climate change and biodiversity are two important topics that have received considerable attention recently. Climate change refers to the long-term alteration of temperature and precipitation patterns, while biodiversity encompasses the variety of life forms found on Earth.
In this research paper, we will discuss the impact of climate change on biodiversity and explore various examples and case studies. The paper will also highlight the significance of addressing this issue and present potential solutions.
By delving into this subject, we aim to contribute to the existing body of knowledge and raise awareness about the importance of protecting biodiversity in climate change.
To begin an introduction paragraph, don’t provide too much background or theory at once. Remember to arrange your thoughts concisely while keeping the important information for the paper body.
A good intro should answer the four basic questions:
- What was I studying?
- Why was this topic important to investigate?
- What did we know about this topic before I did this study?
- How will this study advance our knowledge?
Remember that you might not get a second chance to create a positive first impression. That’s why it’s equally important to keep your paper laconic and to end an introduction paragraph with a call to action to read your research paper.
- Writing a Research Paper
- Research Paper Title
- Research Paper Sources
- Research Paper Problem Statement
- Research Paper Thesis Statement
- Hypothesis for a Research Paper
- Research Question
- Research Paper Outline
- Research Paper Summary
- Research Paper Prospectus
- Research Paper Proposal
- Research Paper Format
- Research Paper Styles
- AMA Style Research Paper
- MLA Style Research Paper
- Chicago Style Research Paper
- APA Style Research Paper
- Research Paper Structure
- Research Paper Cover Page
- Research Paper Abstract
- Research Paper Introduction
- Research Paper Body Paragraph
- Research Paper Literature Review
- Research Paper Background
- Research Paper Methods Section
- Research Paper Results Section
- Research Paper Discussion Section
- Research Paper Conclusion
- Research Paper Appendix
- Research Paper Bibliography
- APA Reference Page
- Annotated Bibliography
- Bibliography vs Works Cited vs References Page
- Research Paper Types
- What is Qualitative Research
Receive paper in 3 Hours!
- Choose the number of pages.
- Select your deadline.
- Complete your order.
Number of Pages
550 words (double spaced)
Deadline: 10 days left
Sign Up for your FREE account
Management Paper Blog Academic Writing Guides And Tips
- Three Research Paper Introduction Examples: Learn How to Initiate and Hook
- Apr 13, 2021
A research paper introduction holds perhaps the most importance for a study to be successful. After a good research paper abstract , it is the introduction that builds the interest in a reader to continue reading the research paper. If the introduction turns out to be dull and drab, then the study would be a failed one.
A good research paper needs a lot of background study, which you often fail to do. To make your work easier, Management Paper is there for you to help you write yours efficiently.
Key Features of a Research Paper Introduction
- It forms the basic part of both the research paper as well as the research proposal .
- Apart from giving a general notion about the research paper topic , it includes important elements such as background, aim, objectives, questions and many more.
- It must contain the questions ‘WHY’: why is the research conducted, why it is important, why this chosen topic and so on is.
- It helps in pointing out the knowledge gaps and fills them up throughout the paper.
- Use precise and clear points.
The Most Commonly Included Elements in The Research Papers
There are different kinds of research papers like essays, reports, dissertations and journals. The introduction which is generally used in case of all other types of research paper except dissertations are similar in nature. Such an introduction is similar to a summary of the topic, defining the problem, stating the aims and objectives that are going to be established through the research.
But in case of dissertation, in a good research paper format the introduction is presented in great detail by dividing the section into the following parts:
- Research background
- Research problem
- Research rationale
- Research aim
- Research objectives
- Research hypothesis
- Research questions
Apart from this, many papers include time plan, scope and limitations of the research too. The experts from the team of Management Paper can help you with your paper writing and also make you understand the various aspects of a research paper.
Some Significant Examples of Research Paper Introduction
Research paper introduction example #1, topic: impact of leadership effectiveness on employees for the company amazon (dissertation).
The history and the various past events related to the topic are being mentioned in this section. Thsi supplies context to the paper and contains both relevant and important studies. Authenticating your information is a must by in-text citations.
The research problem states a specific area of concern, a bothering question, a difficulty which is to be eliminated or a condition that demands improvement. The missing knowledge about the topic is being found out through this and then only you can do further research about the problem.
The rationale answers the question of why the research is being conducted and thus states its importance.
The things that are expected to be achieved at the end of the research are generally mentioned here.
The objectives are the various goals or targets that are to be established and achieved throughout the study.
The research question points out the facts that are to be established through the paper and provides the research with a clear focus and purpose.
This is a specific predictive statement about the possible future outcome of the study which is mostly based upon the relationship between different variables or on a single variable.
Research Paper Introduction Example # 2
Topic: implementing online customer support service through chat portal at aldi, research paper introduction example # 3, topic: compare and contrast the policies for the aged people in various countries.
In both the second and the third example, the introduction is written in a single paragraph. In the first line itself you must introduce the topic. Try to avoid embellishments. Write any remarkable event about the topic then. Explain the problem and the purpose of the research. Try to build a reasonable thesis statement. Then with few lines, insert a smooth transition to make a shift from the introduction to the body.
You can check out more examples from the page of Management paper, and can also avail paper writing service from them with ease. We do not compromise with quality and believe in time management.
Save Times & Improve Grades
Just share your ruquirements and get customized solutions on time
- Research Paper Format: Know How to Structure Your Paper
- 50 Great Debatable Topics to Make Your Essay A Brilliant One
- Research Proposal Outline: Learn to Propose the Plan Properly
- The Types of Essays: Four Popular Genres
- Step by Step Guide to Draft A Research Paper Outline
- Learn the Basic Essay Format Through Some Easy Steps
- The Various Angles of Essays Through Cause-and-Effect Essay Examples
- The Easiest Way to Draft A Formal Essay
- Comparing and Contrasting Through Compare and Contrast Essay Examples
Top Research Paper Introduction Examples to Ace Your Grades
- 1. What is a Research Paper Introduction?
- 2. What are the Key Features of a Research Paper Introduction?
- 3. What to Include in the Research Paper Introduction?
- 4. Research Paper Introduction Example – A Detailed Illustration
- 5. Research Paper Introduction Examples
- 6. Things to Keep in Mind Before Writing the Research Paper Introduction
- 7. Summing Up
Research paper writing is an essential part of the academic process. Writing a research paper entails several stages, including selecting a topic, gathering information, analyzing data, and presenting findings. However, the introduction of a research paper is a crucial section as it sets the tone for the rest of the document. In this blog, we will elaborate on the key components of a research paper introduction and share some fascinating comprehensive research paper introduction examples, which will provide insight into writing an effective introduction for your research paper. In the meantime, if you feel like you need an expert to help you with your coursework, don’t hesitate to connect with our write paper service .
What is a Research Paper Introduction?
A research paper introduction is the opening section of a research paper that provides an overview of the research. It reflects more than just introducing the topic of the study. The introduction gives a comprehensive yet concise overview of the research topic and tries to establish its significance in front of the readers.
In a research paper introduction, the writer provides background information on the topic, states the research problem or question, and presents the thesis statement or main argument that will be supported in the rest of the paper. Writers may also provide a brief overview of the research methodology that will be used in the research, as well as any limitations or scope that should be considered. Overall, the goal of a research paper introduction is to provide the readers with enough information to understand the context of the research and why it is important, while also setting up the rest of the paper for success.
You might also be interested in getting a detailed understanding of how to write a research paper abstract .
What are the Key Features of a Research Paper Introduction?
A research paper introduction is a fundamental part of both the research paper and the proposal. It goes beyond providing a brief overview of the research paper topics , as it includes crucial elements such as background, aims, objectives, and research questions.
- The introduction must answer the ‘why’ questions related to the research, such as why the study is being conducted, why it is important, and why this particular topic was chosen.
- Additionally, the introduction helps to identify knowledge gaps and addresses them throughout the paper.
- To ensure effectiveness, it is important to use concise and clear language when presenting the introduction.
What to Include in the Research Paper Introduction?
According to a structured research paper outline , there are several key components that you should include in the research paper introduction to effectively set the stage for your research and engage your audience. Here are the fundamental elements to include in the introduction:
- Introduction to the Topic/ Hook
The hook is the opening sentence or phrase of your introduction that grabs the reader’s attention and draws them in. It should be interesting, relevant, and perhaps even surprising. A good hook could be a provocative question, a startling statistic, a relevant quote, or an anecdote that sets the stage for your research.
- Research Background
The research background provides context for your study by explaining the background of the subject you are researching. This could include explaining why the topic is important, what has been done on the topic in the past, and any relevant background information that the reader needs to know. The purpose of the background section is to provide context and establish the relevance of the research.
- Problem Statement
The problem statement is a specific, focused, and concise statement that outlines the research problem or questions that your study aims to address. The problem statement should make it clear what you are researching and exemplify its importance.
The research rationale explains the justification for your study and why it is important to address the research problem. This component should explain the significance and relevance of your research in the context of the larger field or industry.
The research aim is a general statement that describes the overall goal of your study. It should be broad enough to encompass the scope of your research but specific enough to provide direction for your research objectives.
- Research Objectives
The research objectives are specific, measurable, and achievable goals that you aim to accomplish through your research. They should be closely linked to your research problem and aim and should provide a clear roadmap for your research.
A research hypothesis is a statement that predicts the relationship between two or more variables in your study. It should be testable and provide a clear direction for your research. Not all research papers will have a hypothesis, but they are common in quantitative research.
- Research Questions
Research questions are specific, focused questions that you aim to answer through your research. They should be closely linked to your research problem and aim and should guide your research methodology and analysis.
- Thesis Statement
The thesis statement is the central argument or research question of your paper. It should be clear and concise and should summarize the main argument or research question that you will support with evidence and analysis in the body of your paper.
You may briefly outline the methodology and approach that you will use in your research. You can also provide the research limitations or scope. The methodology section should provide an idea of how you will conduct your research and what you hope to accomplish.
Finally, you must explain the significance of your research and what it can contribute to the field. This could include implications for practice, policy, or future research. The significance section should make it clear why your research is important and what impact it could have on the field.
Overall, these components work together to provide a clear and compelling introduction to your research paper, outlining the context, purpose, and direction of your study.
Research Paper Introduction Example – A Detailed Illustration
Below we have curated a detailed research paper introduction example that covers all the components discussed above for aiding you with better comprehension.
Topic: The impact of minimum wage laws on small businesses
The minimum wage is a highly debated topic in politics and economics. While minimum wage laws aim to improve the standard of living for workers, they also have potential consequences for small businesses, which often have limited resources. The purpose of this research paper is to examine the impact of minimum wage laws on small businesses.
Minimum wage laws have been a topic of debate for decades, with proponents arguing that they improve the standard of living for workers and opponents claiming that they lead to job loss and increased prices. In recent years, several states and cities in the United States have increased their minimum wage rates, which has raised concerns about the impact on small businesses.
The research problem for this study is to determine how minimum wage laws impact small businesses. Specifically, we aim to answer the question: What are the potential consequences of minimum wage laws for small businesses?
Understanding the impact of minimum wage laws on small businesses is important for several reasons. Small businesses are often the engine of economic growth, and any negative consequences of minimum wage laws could have far-reaching implications for local and national economies. Additionally, the political debate around minimum wage laws is often focused on the impact on workers, with less attention paid to the potential consequences for small businesses.
This study aims to determine the impact of minimum wage laws on small businesses. Specifically, we aim to identify the potential consequences of minimum wage laws for small businesses and explore strategies that small businesses can use to mitigate these consequences.
The objectives of this study are as follows:
- To review the existing literature on the impact of minimum wage laws on small businesses.
- To analyze the potential consequences of minimum wage laws for small businesses, including changes in employment, pricing, and profitability.
- To identify strategies that small businesses can use to mitigate the potential negative consequences of minimum wage laws.
We hypothesize that minimum wage laws have a negative impact on small businesses, leading to job loss, increased prices, and reduced profitability. However, we also believe that small businesses can take steps to mitigate these negative consequences, such as increasing productivity and finding new revenue streams.
- What is the existing literature on the impact of minimum wage laws on small businesses?
- How do minimum wage laws impact small businesses in terms of employment, pricing, and profitability?
- What strategies can small businesses use to mitigate the potential negative consequences of minimum wage laws?
Thesis Statement: “While minimum wage laws aim to improve the lives of low-wage workers, they often have unintended consequences for small businesses, including increased operating costs and reduced employment opportunities.”
Significance: The minimum wage laws are a widely debated policy issue with potential impacts on both workers and businesses. Understanding the effects of these laws on small businesses is crucial for policymakers and business owners alike, as it can inform decisions regarding minimum wage legislation and business practices.
Research Paper Introduction Examples
Below we have provided two elucidative research paper introduction examples to help understand how an introduction is typically written.
Title: Exploring the Effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Interventions for Sustainable Weight Loss and Improved Health Outcomes in Individuals with Obesity
Obesity is a major public health concern, with nearly 40% of American adults classified as obese. In recent years, the prevalence of obesity has increased dramatically, leading to a rise in related health problems such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and certain types of cancer. While many factors contribute to the development of obesity, including genetics and environmental factors, dietary habits and physical activity levels are two of the most important modifiable risk factors. However, traditional weight loss interventions such as diet and exercise programs have had limited success in producing sustained weight loss. As a result, there is a need for innovative approaches to weight management that address the underlying behavioral and psychological factors that contribute to obesity. This paper aims to explore the effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions in promoting sustainable weight loss and improving overall health outcomes in individuals with obesity. Through a comprehensive review of the existing literature and a randomized controlled trial, this study aims to contribute to the development of more effective weight management strategies that can have a significant impact on public health.
Breakdown: In this example, the hook is the statistic on the prevalence of obesity and its related health problems. The background provides context on the contributing factors to obesity and the limitations of traditional weight loss interventions. The research problem is the need for innovative approaches to weight management that address behavioral and psychological factors. The research rationale is the potential impact of these approaches on public health. The research aim is to explore the effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions. The research objectives are to conduct a literature review and a randomized controlled trial. The research hypothesis is that mindfulness-based interventions will lead to sustained weight loss and improved health outcomes. The research questions are what is the effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions in promoting weight loss and improving health outcomes in individuals with obesity? Lastly, the thesis statement is that this study aims to contribute to the development of more effective weight management strategies that can have a significant impact on public health.
Title: The Impact of Early Childhood Education on Academic Achievement
Education is a fundamental right for all children, and quality early childhood education (ECE) has been shown to have a significant impact on a child’s academic achievement. Research indicates that children who participate in high-quality ECE programs perform better in school, have better social skills, and are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college. However, not all children have access to high-quality ECE programs, and there is a significant achievement gap between children from low-income families and their peers. This research paper aims to explore the impact of early childhood education on academic achievement, with a focus on the factors that contribute to successful ECE programs and how to ensure that all children have access to high-quality ECE. The research problem is the achievement gap between children from low-income families and their peers, and the research objectives are to identify the characteristics of effective ECE programs, examine the impact of ECE on academic achievement, and explore policies that promote access to high-quality ECE for all children. By understanding the impact of early childhood education on academic achievement, this research can inform policies and practices that promote equity and opportunity for all children.
Note: In both examples, the introduction is written in a single paragraph, however, there is no hard and fast rule about how many paragraphs a research paper introduction should be written in. Some introductions can be effectively written in a single paragraph, while others may require more than one paragraph to adequately introduce the topic and set the stage for the research.
The most important consideration is to ensure that the introduction is clear, concise, and effectively sets up the research to follow. If that can be accomplished in a single paragraph, then that is perfectly acceptable. However, if multiple paragraphs are necessary to fully introduce the topic and research objectives, then that is also acceptable.
Ultimately, the length and structure of the introduction should be determined by the needs of the research and the expectations of the target audience.
Things to Keep in Mind
Before starting to write the introduction of a research paper, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Understand the assignment requirements: Make sure you fully understand the assignment requirements and guidelines for the research paper, including the required length, format, and citation style.
- I dentify your audience: Consider who your target audience is and what they are expecting to learn from your research paper. This will help you tailor your introduction to meet their needs.
- Conduct thorough research: Before writing the introduction, ensure that you have conducted thorough research on the topic. This will help you understand the background and context of the research and provide a strong foundation for your introduction.
- Develop a clear thesis statement: Your thesis statement is the backbone of your research paper and should be clear, concise, and specific. Develop a strong thesis statement that sets the tone for the rest of the paper.
- Create an outline: An outline can help you organize your thoughts and ideas, and ensure that your introduction flows smoothly and logically.
- Write a draft: Once you have conducted research and created an outline, write a draft of your introduction. This will help you refine your ideas and identify any areas that need further development or clarification.
- In-text citations: It’s important to keep in mind the need for accurate and consistent in-text citations while writing the introduction and throughout your paper. Make sure to properly cite any sources you use, including direct quotes, paraphrased information, and any ideas or data that you have used. This not only ensures that you give credit where it is due, but it also helps to strengthen the credibility of your research.
- Revise and edit: After writing a draft of your introduction, revise and edit it to ensure that it is clear, concise, and effective. Make sure that the language and tone are appropriate for your audience, and that all necessary information is included.
Looking for some unique and engaging commemorative speech topics ?
A well-crafted introduction is just as important as the research itself, as it can greatly contribute to the success of the paper. To achieve a strong introduction, it is crucial to be concise yet compelling, maintain clarity in research problems and objectives, and organize the content effectively. This guide aims to assist in crafting an effective research paper introduction. However, if further concerns arise, you can seek help from our essay writing help. We have a team of experienced academic writers who can assist with various assignments, so let us know if you require any assistance.