The Introductory Paragraph The paragraph that begins an essay causes students the most trouble, yet carries the most importance. Although its precise construction varies from genre to genre and from essay to essaygood introductory paragraphs generally accomplish the same tasks and follow a few basic patterns. I have listed some of them below, but keep in mind that what follows are guidelines, not immutable templates.
Transitional words and phrases can create powerful links between ideas in your paper and can help your reader understand the logic of your paper. However, these words all have different meanings, nuances, and connotations. Before using a particular transitional word in your paper, be sure you. Use it to pull the reader in. Remember, though, that in the body of your essay you will be using examples to prove your point; this is a different kind of example, used only to introduce your point and intrigue your reader. The main purpose of writing a persuasive essay is, like the name suggests it, to convince the audience of a certain point. This type of academic writing task is also known as argumentative essay — it is expected that you use sufficient arguments to defend your position.
Although it may be only in school that you are asked to write a specifically descriptive essay, description is an important element in many kinds of writing. Description embedded in an argument paper, for example, may be intended to make a position more persuasive.
However, in this TIP Sheet we will discuss the descriptive essay as it is commonly assigned by instructors as an exercise in organizing sensory information and choosing vivid details. If you choose "showing" words, those that supply vivid sensory details appropriate to your subject and purpose, you will succeed in showing rather than telling.
The following first example mostly makes statements about what is lacking in the room, whereas the second example describes the sights, textures, smells, and sounds of the empty room: The empty room smelled stale and was devoid of furniture or floor covering; the single window lacked curtains or blinds of any kind.
The apartment smelled of old cooking odors, cabbage, and mildew; our sneakers squeaked sharply against the scuffed wood floors, which reflected a haze of dusty sunlight from the one cobwebbed, gritty window.
Though the writer of the second example does not actually use the word "empty," she nevertheless suggests emptiness and disuse. The suggestion of emptiness in the second example is more vivid than the statement of emptiness in the first.
If you don't think the first example is vague, look at another possible interpretation of that empty room: The sharp odor of fresh paint cut through the smell of newsprint.
Four stacked cartons of inkjet printer paper sat squarely in the middle of a concrete floor, illuminated by a shaft of morning light from a sparkling chrome-framed window on the opposite wall. Do not mistake explanation for description.
Explanation is a kind of telling that interjects background material that does not contain sensory details or contribute to the overall effect—a character's motives or history, for example: The tenants had moved out a week earlier because the house was being sold to a developer.
No one had bothered to dust or clean because they assumed the apartment was going to be knocked down and replaced with single-family homes like those built just a block away.
When description devolves into explanation telling rather than showingit becomes boring.
Observing details Once you are ready to abandon the attempt to explain or to tell about, evaluate your subject in terms of visual, auditory, and other sensory details. Think in concrete terms. The more you are interested in and connected to the subject, the easier it will be to interest your reader, so if you describe a person, choose a person whose characteristics stand out to you.
If you describe a place or a thing, choose one that is meaningful to you. You are painting a picture that must be as clear and real as possible, so observe carefully and, preferably, in person.
Note what sets this subject apart from others like it.An order of importance paragraph is one in which the writer lists his supporting details in ascending or descending order of importance. In other words, the writer lists the details from least to most important or from most to least important.
Using transition words or phrases such as next, finally, during, after, when, and later, between sentences and paragraphs will make it easier for . Purpose The purpose of an Argumentative Essay is to defend a debatable position on a particular issue with the ultimate goal of persuading readers to accept the argument.
Example/Illustration Essay Purpose: The purpose is to state a general statement and prove it through the use of examples and illustrations. Introduction: The introduction states the general statement that you want to prove. Ex.: Gender stereotypes still exist in the professional world.
Body paragraphs: The body paragraphs have specific example(s) and/or illustration(s) that establish. Parts of an Essay Introduction Paragraph What is an introduction paragraph? The introduction paragraph is the first paragraph of your essay. What does it do?
It introduces the main idea of your essay. A good opening paragraph captures the interest . A paragraph is a group of related sentences detailing one clear point related to your thesis. A good paragraph is thoughtful, unified, coherent, and well-developed.
If you are having trouble developing or explaining your key points within your paragraphs, check to see if your paragraphs have these three essential structural parts: a point.