The introduction sets the scene for the whole essay. For a 1500 word essay, this could be a 150 word paragraph. The purpose of the introduction is to identify the topic, your point of view and the main reasons for your response.
Often this paragraph includes:
•An introductory sentence or two related directly to the question. •A definition or explanation of a key term, cited from your discipline. •A clear statement of the focus of the essay or the position being argued, your thesis statement. •Sentences that give a clear idea of what the essay will be about (content) and the direction (scope) the essay will take.
Paragraphs in the body of the essay show your discussion of the main ideas supporting your position or response to the question. Ideas from the scholarly literature give credibility and weight to your argument.
Each paragraph should link with the previous paragraph and may include: •A topic sentence: a statement of the main idea of the paragraph. •Explanation or supporting evidence from the scholarly readings. •Further evidence from your reading to deepen your discussion. •Application of ideas to a scenario or through the use of an example. •Your discussion of, comment on and evaluation of these ideas. •A concluding sentence that brings the paragraph to a close.
The purpose of the conclusion is to summarise and make final evaluative comments. It is important to refer back to the essay question.
This paragraph includes:
•A brief summary of the main ideas presented in the essay. •Confirmation of the thesis included in the introduction.
•Final evaluative comments on the relative importance of the arguments. •Comments on the ongoing significance of the topic as an issue that needs further discussion or investigation.
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