Now that your planning stage is complete, you can begin writing your draft.
As you write your introduction, think about the information your reader needs to understand your topic so they feel ready for the thesis when they read it. Read the following thesis. What information would help a reader understand the general topic so he is ready for the thesis?
TH: Positive urban development is the result of careful planning, wise investing, and a good understanding of the needs of the area.
The reader needs to know what the author means by “positive urban development” so that when they read the thesis, they will be ready to learn about the causes of this type of development. The introduction may start discussing how cities change generally and then introduce the idea of positive changes like growth, stability, and safety. Then the reader should feel prepared for this thesis.
1 Exercise: Brainstorm background knowledge for an introduction
What does the reader need to know before they encounter any of these thesis statements in an introduction paragraph?
- TH: The imbalance of brain chemicals, personality and family relationships are important causes of depression.
- TH: Reading can help stimulate your brain, reduce stress, and increase knowledge.
- TH: Obesity in the US can be caused by lifestyle or genetics and it, in turn, causes a considerable number of people to develop diseases.
2 Exercise: Analyze an introduction paragraph
Read the following introduction paragraph. Were you prepared for the thesis? Why? (Or why not?)
Climate change has become one of the major problems that the planet earth is facing. Scientists have observed changes in rainfall patterns, increase droughts in some inland areas, rising of sea level due to flooding from storms, and other unusual patterns in natural phenomena. Researchers have also discovered that the planet is increasingly heating up. Oceans and land are warmer than in the past. To illustrate this, scientists have discovered that there has been an increase of 1.71 degree in the temperature between the years 1880 and 2016 in both land and oceans (Pappas, 2017). The planet needs to maintain a certain temperature for its balance and for the benefit of all living creatures. As many wonder about the roots of this phenomenon on the planet, science has shown that human activities and natural events are causes of global warming.
As you write your body paragraphs, keep your focus on explaining how and why your topic sentences are true. It can be easy to get distracted when incorporating research into body paragraphs, but make sure everything you write supports the topic sentence.
3 Exercise: Analyze a body paragraph
What kind of advice would you give the author of this body paragraph?
Growing up bilingual has cognitive benefits. Humans have the capacity to learn languages. How much we develop this capacity relies on the context and experiences each person has in his/her life. Dr. Bialystok in her research assessed a group of monolingual and bilingual children with specific tasks. Children needed to have flexibility in problem solving, inhibit irrelevant information, and recognition. When the rules changed, the bilingual children were outstanding in their tasks. She attributed the bilingual children’s abilities in these tasks to their ability to switch between languages and select the appropriate words to use, due to their cognitive development. Bilingual people have the ability to hold two different things in their brain at the same time, and switch between them when they need it. Bialystok (2012) cited several studies that found bilinguals perform better in the cognitive and metalinguistic measures, divergent thinking, and creativity. She explained these advantages are because bilingual have mutual interference between languages to force them to adopt strategies that accelerate cognitive development.
4 Exercise: Write a body paragraph
Return to the research about the causes of volcanic eruptions. Use the sources to develop a body paragraph that begins with this topic sentence:
- A difference in density or air pressure can cause a volcanic eruption.
5 Exercise: Write a conclusion
Read the following introduction paragraph for an essay about effects of sugar consumption. Write a conclusion paragraph for this essay.
It is not surprising that sugar can trigger negatives consequences in our body. For that reason it is natural that people are concerned about sugar consumption. In 2008, Americans were consuming over 60 pounds of added sugar per year, which is equivalent to 19 teaspoons or 306 calories. (Gunnars, 2017). This habit has taken hold of the conscience of the whole world. According to Gunnars, sugar consumption went down by 23% between the years 2000 and 2008, but ongoing intake levels are still way too high and are the principal factor in making people unhealthy (2017). Sugar in great quantities can lead to health problems, such as obesity, addiction and changes in your mood.