4th Edition Essay Paragraph Reading Short Talk Writing

Quiz for Mid-Term Exam

Student Self-Grading Multiple Choice

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1. Traditionally, the first stage of writing is called ________.

a) beginning
b) inventing
c) concluding
d) none of the above


Answer: b (p. 5).

2. Process-reflective writing focuses on ________.

a) clarity
b) outlining
c) drafting
d) point form


Answer:a (p. 5).

3. Reading merely to grasp basic content is, in essence, ________.

a) passive reading
b) one-way reading
c) aggressive reading
d) Both a and b
e) All of the above


Answer: d (p. 7)

4. A reader who assesses a writer's expertise, experience, and past research assesses the ________.

a) writer’s method
b) writer’s support
c) writer’s basis
d) writer’s credibility


Answer: d (p. 14).

5. A writer's attitude toward his or her subject can be identified through ________.

a) jargon
b) tone
c) context
d) background
e) All of the above


Answer:b (p. 22).

6. A(n) ___________ audience is more likely to disagree or differ from the writer's view point.

a) positive
b) negative
c) neutral
d) opposite


Answer: b (p. 38).

7. Thinking about and developing a topic involves ________.

a) pre-writing
b) organization
c) research
d) composing


Answer:a (p. 38).

8. Continuously writing without editing to record ideas is called ________.

a) mapping
b) brainstorming
c) freewriting
d) clustering


Answer: c (p. 44).

9. An outline including sub-points and main points is called ________..

a) scratch outline
b) a formal outline
c) a graphic outline
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 48).

10. Considering purpose, whether the audience is addressed, and if there are unneeded points is called ________.

a) underscoring ideas
b) solidifying ideas
c) solidifying structure
d) overview


Answer: d (p. 52)

11. An expository essay provides _____________ on/of a subject.

a) an analysis
b) information
c) an opinion
d) All of the above


Answer: b (p. 56).

12. Critical thinking is essential to ________.

a) expository writing
b) argumentative writing
c) Both a and b
d) None of the above



Answer: c (p. 56).

13.Expository writing uses a _____________-based thesis.

a) fact
b) value
c) policy
d) All of the above



Answer: a (p. 56).

14.Description provides the reader with ________.

a) abstract information
b) concrete description
c) opinions
d) None of the above



Answer:b (p. 57).

15. Recall requires that the writer be aware of ________.

a) basic principles
b) procedures
c) methods
d) All of the above



Answer: d (p. 59).

16. The topic sentence tends to be at the __________ of a paragraph.

a) beginning
b) middle
c) end
d) none of the above


Answer: a (p. 74).

17. A ________ reminds a reader what the paragraph was about.


a)topic sentence
b) wrap
c) conclusion
d) none of the above


Answer: b (p. 74).

18. Strong paragraphs are ________.

a) coherent
b) unified
c) well-developed
d) all of the above


Answer: d (p. 76).

19. _______ patterns may be assigned to a paragraph

a) Spatial
b) Chronological
c) Cause and effect
d) all of the above
e) None of the above


Answer: d (p. 79).

20. Repetition of words may ________.

a) reinforce a core idea
b) emphasize through rhythm
c) All of the above
d) None of the above


Answer: c (p. 80).

21. Introductions should ________.

a) create reader interest
b) reaffirm the thesis
c) restate the thesis
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 88).

22. Beginning an introduction with a quotation, question, or personal experience is common of the ________.

a) dramatic approach
b) inverted pyramid structure
c) thesis statement
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 89).

23.Thesis statements function to ________.

a) announce the main point
b) introduce the writer
c) establish credibilitye
d) all of the above
e) Both a and b


Answer: d (pp. 91–92).

24. "Simple" an "expanded" may describe types of ________.

a) conclusions
b) thesis statements
c) introductions
d) body paragraphs


Answer: b (pp. 94–95).

25."Circular" and "spiral" describe types of ________.

a) conclusions
b) introductions
c) thesis statements
d) body paragraphs


Answer: a (p. 105).

26.The topic often provides a writer with the ________.

a) main organizational method
b) thesis
c) body paragraph


Answer: a (p. 110)

27.If the topic dictates which method is to be used, the essay may use ________.

a) that topic only
b) other methods
c) that method only
d)None of the above


Answer: b (p. 111).

28.Chronology deals with a topic's ________.

a) thesis
b) conclusion
c) development over time
d) definition


Answer: c (p. 112).

29.A writer can use description in an essay ________.

a) at any point
b) only at the beginning
c) only at the end
d) at no point


Answer: a (p. 113).

30. An analogy is a(n) ________.

a) narration
b) evaluation
c) thesis
d) paragraph


Answer: e (p. 118).

31. Which of the following is a type of claim?

a) fact
b) value
c) policy
d) All of the above
e) None of the above


Answer: d (p. 122).

32.Tentative claims are ________.

a) temporary
b) conclusive
c) false
d) political
e) All of the above


Answer: : a (p. 123).

33.________ may be hard or soft.

a) Research
b) Evidence
c) Argument
d) Analysis


Answer: b (p. 124).

34. Case studies can be used to support ________.

a) precedents
b) analogies
c) personal experience
d) a hypothesis


Answer: d (p. 126).

35. ________ contributes to a writer's credibility

a) Reliability
b) Fairness
c) All of the above
d)None of the above


Answer: c (p. 127).

36._________ is a type of writing distinct from arguing or persuading

a) Research
b) Expository
c) Literary analysis
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 133).

37.When explaining or informing, a writer must be familiar with his or her ________.

a) topic
b) reader
c) opinion
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 136).

38.Once a writer has developed a topic, he or she should determine the reader's ________.

a) knowledge
b) interest
c) All of the above
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 137).

39. If the main purpose of a process analysis is to stimulate interest, the writer will need to include________.

a) more detail
b) less detail
c) no details at all
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 137).

40. A ________ essay is often the most challenging

a) process analysis
b) definition
c) compare and contrast
d) None of the above


Answer: c (p. 143).

41. An extended summary should be mostly in ________.

a) the writer's words
b) quoted
c) point form
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 157).

42. When a writer summarizes from a secondary source, it is important to ________.

a) paraphrase
b) give credit
c) write an abstract


Answer: : b (p. 157).

43. Compared to the original work, a paraphrase is usually ________.

a) the same length
b) longer
c) shorter
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 164).

44. An abstract is generally written ________.

a) before the writing process beginst
b) after the essay is finished
c) after the writer has reached conclusions
d) Both a and b
e) Both b and c


Answer: e (p. 165).

45.Annotated bibliographies often accompany ________.

a) books
b) dissertations
c) book reviews
d) Both a and bbr
e) None of the above


Answer: d (p. 166).

46.When conducting research, a writer must analyze other researchers' ________.

a) conclusions
b) opinions
c) experiences
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 170).

47. After finding sources, the writer must ________ them.

a) paraphrase
b) assimilate
c) cite
d) document


Answer: b (p. 172).

48.When collecting research, it is important to ensure that the sources have been ________.

a) published to the internet
b) scrutinized by other experts
c) Both of the above
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 176).

49.Early in the research process, potentially useful sources may be added to ________.

a) an annotated bibliography
b) a working bibliography
c) an abstract
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 177).

50. A secondary source is another writer's ________.

a) opinion on a text
b) case study of a text
c) analysis of a text
d) commentary on a text
e) Both c and d
f) Both b and c


Answer: e (p. 181).

51. When integrating secondary sources, the writer should consider using the ________-format.

a) summary
b) paraphrase
c) direct quotation
d) mixe
e) All of the above


Answer: e (p. 197).

52. General knowledge often varies according to ________.

a) audience
b) opinion
c) the writer
d) All of the above
e)None of the above


Answer: : a (p. 196).

53. Using secondary sources allows a writer to support ________.

a) a case study
b) an opinion
c) an argument
d) a description


Answer: c (p. 197).

54. A writer should summarize ________ when using them to support main points.

a) descriptions
b) opinions
c) ideas
d) phrases


Answer: c (p. 198).

55. A writer can use________ to indicate the omission of one or more words from a direct quotation

a) ellipses
b) brackets
c) quotation marks
d) boldface


Answer: a (p. 201).

56. The MLA and APA style guides are updated ________.

a) every decade
b) every two years
c) never
d) every five years
e)None of the above


Answer: d (p. 212).

57. Most documentation styles include ________ in the citations.

a) the author namebr /> b) the page number or other locator
c) the year of publication
d) All of the above
e) None of the above


Answer: d (p. 213).

58.APA stands for ________.

a)Associated Physiology Association
b) American Psychic Association
c) Associated Physics Association
d)American Psychological Association


Answer: d (p. 213).

59. Both APA and MLA styles use ________ references for in-text citations.

a) parenthetical
b) footnotes
c) endnotes
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 213).

60. In MLA, if a direct quotation is longer than four typed sentences, the writer should use ________.

a) Chicago style
b) block format
c) a footnote
d) an endnote
e) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 232).

61. When presenting an argument, the writer should be sure that the tone does not come across as ________.

a) logical
b) fair
c) opinionated
d) ethical
e) reasonable


Answer: c (p. 265).

62. A writer can show a lack of objectivity through use of ________.

a) slanted language
b) loaded language
c) logical language
d) formal language
e) Both a and b
f) Both b and c


Answer: e (p. 271).

63. To help the reader visualize an argument, the writer can use ________.

a) allusion
b) analogy
c) a conclusion
d) a fallacy
e) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 273).

64. When using personal experience in an argument, it is important to use a ________ tone.

a) objective
b) subjective
c) formal
d) All of the above
e) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 273).

65. Deductive reasoning uses ________.

a) a major premise
b) a minor premise
c) a fallacy
d) All of the above
e) Both a and b


Answer: e (p. 276).

66. This and her are ________.

a) interjections
b) determiners
c) verbs
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 301).

67. A subject of complement is the noun or pronoun that completes the subject after a ________.

a) linking verb
b) linking adjective
c) linking noun
d) linking adverb


Answer: a (p. 302).

68. A personal pronoun refers to ________.

a) people
b) things
c) Both a and b
d) None of the above


Answer: c (p. 303).

69. A compound sentence is formed by two or more independent clauses joined by a ________.

a)coordination conjunction
b) adverb
c) noun
d) fragment


Answer: b (p. 301).

70. A run-on sentence is sometimes called a(n) ________.

a) comma splice
b) fragment
c) fused sentence
d) incomplete sentence


Answer: c (p. 325).

71. Commas can be used to separate ________.

a) items in a series
b) two things only
c) sentences
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 332).

72. A compound consists of ________.

a) three words
b) two words
c) one word
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 333).

73. With coordinate adjectives, commas are ________.

a) required
b) not required
c) left to the writer's discretion
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 338).

74. Semicolons can be used to join ________.

a) independent clauses
b) fragments
c) Both of the above
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 342).

75. Apostrophes indicate the ________ case.

a) interrogative
b) plural
c) possessive
d) All of the above


Answer: c (p. 353).

76. Usually, the subject of a sentence performs the action of the ________.

a) adverb
b) verb
c) phrase
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 360).

77. Collective nouns refer to ________.

a) groups
b) an animal
c) an idea
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 363).

78. ________ refer to nonspecific objects or individuals

a) Indefinite pronouns
b) Collective nouns
c) Compound subjects
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 363).

79. If a pronoun lacks an apparent noun antecedent, the result is ________.

a) unclear reference
b) antecedent agreement
c) no reference
d) None of the above


Answer: c (p. 371).

80. ________ refer to persons.

a) Pronouns
b) Adjectives
c) verbs
d) Dashes


Answer: a (p. 376).

81. Concise writing is ________.

a) direct
b) precise
c) specific
d) All of the above


Answer: d (p. 406).

82. To express the importance of concise writing, editors suggest the formula: one + one = ________.

a) two
b) three
c) one-half
d) one-quartere)
e) None of the above


Answer: c (p. 407).

83. If a prepositional phrase is redundant it is called ________.

a) phony phrase
b) a dependent phrase
c) an empty phrase
d) None of the above


Answer: a (p. 409).

84. ________ are indirect.

a) Active constructions
b) Passive constructions
c) Intensives
d) None of the above


Answer: b (p. 411).

85. Informal writing will often allow use of ________.

a) contractions
b) slang
c) colloquialisms
d) idioms
e) All of the above


Answer:e (p. 419).

Student Short Answer Questions

1. When scanning for gist, a reader may focus on ________.


Answer: keywords (p. 10).

2. The best inference is ________ one.


Answer: the most probable (p. 13).

3. Outside of research, a credible writer should provide ________ for his or her argument.


Answer: support (p. 15).

4. Outside of analysis and questioning, a credible writer should provide a ________.


Answer: conclusion (p. 15).

5. Rather than being explicit, a word definition may be ________.


Answer: implied (p. 26)

6. An audience with some interest in a subject is called a(n) ________ audience


Answer: general (p. 36).

7. ________ involves writing down points in paragraph form.


Answer: Composing (p. 41).

8. A broad category that may contain many points is known as a(n) ________.


Answer: subject.

9. A ________ outline is particularly useful in preparing for short or in-class essays


Answer: scratch (p. 48).

10. Returning to an outline and assessing structure, unity, and logical sequence all involve ________.


Answer: solidifying structure (p. 53).

11. Writing that uses value- or policy-based thesis statements is ________.


Answer: argumentative (p. 56).

12. Research is most commonly integral to ________ writing.


Answer: expository (p. 56)..

13. Discernment and adaptability stress a focus on ________ and ________.


Answer:distinguishing what is important; strong points (pp. 60–61).

14. In a critical response, the first sentences should include ________ or ________.


Answer: overview; generalization about the topic (p. 65).

15. A critical response exercises ________ reading skills.


Answer:active (p. 64).

16. A paragraph functions to ¬¬¬¬________ an important point and to ________ that point.


Answer: introduce; develop (p. 74).

17. ________ connect a paragraph to what comes before and after.



Answer: Transitions (pp. 75-76).

18. Focusing on one idea in a paragraph works toward paragraph ________.



Answer: unity (pp. 76–77).

19. To obtain rhythm and ovoid unnecessary repetition, a writer may replace repeating words with ________.



Answer: ssynonyms (p. 80).

20. In effect, in fact, and certainly are example of transitions of ________.



Answer: emphasis (p. 80).

21. In an introduction, proceeding from the general to the specific is known as the ________ structure.



Answer: inverted pyramid (p. 88).

22. Beginning an outline with the strongest point is called ________ order.



Answer: inverted climax (dramatic) (p. 102).

23. A ________ conclusion reminds and reinforces the thesis.



Answer: circular (p. 105).

24. A ________ conclusion leads beyond the thesis.



Answer: spiral (p. 105).

25. A conclusion should not restate the ________ word for word.



Answer: thesis (p. 105).

26. A topic can lead a writer to a specific ________ of development.



Answer: method (p. 110).

27. Methods of developing patterns are also known as ________ patterns.



Answer: rhetorical (p. 111).

28. ________ something can allow the writer to tell the reader what they will talk about.



Answer: Defining (p. 112).

29. ________ essays are usually fact-based.



Answer: Process analysis (p. 114).

30. Systematically drawing similarities and differences between different objects or concepts defines the ________ method.



Answer: comparison and contrast (p. 118).

31. A claim that functions as a conclusion is a ________ claim.



Answer: conclusive (p. 123).

32. A tentative claim is ________.



Answer: temporary (p. 123).

33. Especially when doing research, it is important to find ________ evidence.



Answer: hard (p. 124).

34. ________ evidence indirectly supports a writer's points.



Answer: : Soft (p. 125).

35. Detailed examples that often take the form of brief narratives are called ________.



Answer: illustrations (p. 126).

36. The ________ essay is often the first essay students learn to write.



Answer: expository (p. 133).

37. Process analysis, definition, and compare and contrast essays often do not require ________.



Answer: research (p. 135).

38. Process analysis essays often serve to stimulate ________.



Answer: interest (p. 136)./h5>

39. Definition often allows for a ________ for an argument.



Answer: starting point (p. 141).

40. Block and point-by-point methods of organization should be applied to a(n) ________ essay.



Answer: comparison and contrast essay (p. 144)

41. Summarizing from a ________ source requires the writer to borrow important parts of someone else's writing.



Answer:borrow (p. 159).

42. To clarify whether a writer is explaining or arguing, a writer may use a ________ phrase.



Answer: signal (p. 159).

43. An abstract should be written ________ a writer has finished the essay.



Answer: after (p. 165).

44. Entries in an annotated bibliography should be ________.



Answer: brief (p. 166).

45. An annotated bibliography may include a(n) ________ of a study's usefulness to a project.



Answer: appraisal (p. 166).

46. At the college or university level, exposition usually involves ________.



Answer: research (p. 170).

47. In the early draft stage, the writer should be concerned with ________ sources into the essay.



Answer: integrating (p. 173).

48. Conducting research most often requires focus on factual ________.



Answer: evidence (p. 174).

49. In the case of articles, when scanning for useful sources a writer may save time by reading the ________.



Answer: abstract (p. 177).

50. To ensure that an article is credible, the writer should check if the journal is ________.



Answer: peer reviewed (p. 182).

51. A writer may receive a zero on an assignment, for the class, or be expelled from a college or university for ________.



Answer: plagiarizing (p. 195).

52. A writer does not need to cite ________ knowledge.



Answer: general (p. 195).

53. A writer can use a mixture of paraphrase and direct quotation in what is called ________ format.



Answer: mixed (p. 199).

54. When a source's exact wording is important to an argument, the writer should use a ________ quotation.



Answer: direct (p. 198).

55. When using ellipses, the writer should type ________ spaced dots to indicate the omission.



Answer: 55. Answer: three (p. 201).

56. Most documentation styles require an abbreviated ________ to follow a reference.



Answer: citation (p. 213).

57. APA places a(n) ________ between the author and date.



Answer: comma (p. 214).

58. ________ marks are not used in a bock quotation.



Answer: Quotation (p. 214).

59. MLA uses a ________ Cited page.



Answer: Works (p. 235).

60. MLA allows informational footnotes at the ________ of each page.



Answer: bottom (p. 244).

61. Treadmill logic is a logical ________.



Answer: fallacy (p. 268).

62. A fallacy of irrelevance that attempts to mislead or distract a reader is called a ________.



Answer: red herring (p. 268).

63. A fallacy that compares two things that are not alike is called a ________.



Answer: false analogy (p. 269).

64. Slanted or loaded language causes a writer to show a lack of ________.



Answer: objectivity (p. 271).

65. A specific claim states clearly and directly what a writer will be ________.



Answer: arguing (p. 274).

66. Prepositions are also known as ________.



Answer: joiners (pp. 306–307).

67. Correlative conjunctions require parallel ________.



Answer: structure (p. 308).

68. A main pronoun or noun on its own is often called the ________ subject.



Answer: simple (p. 311).

69. A command sentence known as a(n) ________ sentence may consist of only a predicate.



Answer: imperative (p. 312).

70. The joining of two complete sentences by a comma results in a comma ________.



Answer: splice (p. 326).

71. The use of commas to separate items in a series applies to ¬________ or more parallel items.



Answer: three (p. 332).

72. A comma can be used to separate coordinate ________.



Answer: adjectives (p. 337).

73. A serial semicolon may be used to separate items in a ________.



Answer: series (p. 334).

74. Dashes convey a ________ in thought and should be used sparingly.



Answer: break (p. 347).

75. Commas should not be used to separate ________ compounds.



Answer: simple (p. 352).

76. ________ pronouns always ask questions.



Answer: Interrogative (p. 379).

77. Pronouns must agree in gender, number, and ________ with its antecedent.



Answer: person (p. 381).

78. The technical term for word order is ________.



Answer: syntax (p. 382).

79. Dangling modifiers modify the closest ________.



Answer: noun (p. 385).

80. Compounds require the principle of ________ structure.



Answer: parallel (p. 392).

81. Formal writing should be concise, and therefore should avoid ________.



Answer: circumlocutions (p. 406).

82. Passive constructions displace the ________.



Answer: subject (p. 411).

83. To pass away or to pass on are ________ for death.



Answer: euphemisms (p. 417).

84. The verb to be often appears as a ________ verb.



Answer: helping (p. 423).

85. A ________ sentence begins with a modifier, which appears before the independent clause.



Answer: periodic (p. 427).

I. Structure and Approach

The introduction is the broad beginning of the paper that answers three important questions for the reader:

  1. What is this?
  2. Why should I read it?
  3. What do you want me to think about / consider doing / react to?

Think of the structure of the introduction as an inverted triangle of information that lays a foundation for understanding the research problem. Organize the information so as to present the more general aspects of the topic early in the introduction, then narrow your analysis to more specific topical information that provides context, finally arriving at your research problem and the rationale for studying it [often written as a series of key questions] and, whenever possible, a description of the potential outcomes your study can reveal.

These are general phases associated with writing an introduction:

1.  Establish an area to research by:

  • Highlighting the importance of the topic, and/or
  • Making general statements about the topic, and/or
  • Presenting an overview on current research on the subject.

2.  Identify a research niche by:

  • Opposing an existing assumption, and/or
  • Revealing a gap in existing research, and/or
  • Formulating a research question or problem, and/or
  • Continuing a disciplinary tradition.

3.  Place your research within the research niche by:

  • Stating the intent of your study,
  • Outlining the key characteristics of your study,
  • Describing important results, and
  • Giving a brief overview of the structure of the paper.

NOTE:  Even though the introduction is the first main section of a research paper, it is often useful to finish the introduction late in the writing process because the structure of the paper, the reporting and analysis of results, and the conclusion will have been completed. Reviewing and, if necessary, rewriting the introduction ensures that it correctly matches the overall structure of your final paper.

II.  Delimitations of the Study

Delimitations refer to those characteristics that limit the scope and define the conceptual boundaries of your research. This is determined by the conscious exclusionary and inclusionary decisions you make about how to investigate the research problem. In other words, not only should you tell the reader what it is you are studying and why, but you must also acknowledge why you rejected alternative approaches that could have been used to examine the topic.

Obviously, the first limiting step was the choice of research problem itself. However, implicit are other, related problems that could have been chosen but were rejected. These should be noted in the conclusion of your introduction. For example, a delimitating statement could read, "Although many factors can be understood to impact the likelihood young people will vote, this study will focus on socioeconomic factors related to the need to work full-time while in school." The point is not to document every possible delimiting factor, but to highlight why previously researched issues related to the topic were not addressed.

Examples of delimitating choices would be:

  • The key aims and objectives of your study,
  • The research questions that you address,
  • The variables of interest [i.e., the various factors and features of the phenomenon being studied],
  • The method(s) of investigation,
  • The time period your study covers, and
  • Any relevant alternative theoretical frameworks that could have been adopted.

Review each of these decisions. Not only do you clearly establish what you intend to accomplish in your research, but you should also include a declaration of what the study does not intend to cover. In the latter case, your exclusionary decisions should be based upon criteria understood as, "not interesting"; "not directly relevant"; “too problematic because..."; "not feasible," and the like. Make this reasoning explicit!

NOTE:  Delimitations refer to the initial choices made about the broader, overall design of your study and should not be confused with documenting the limitiations of your study discovered after the research has been completed.

ANOTHER NOTE: Do not view delimitating statements as admitting to an inherent failing or shortcoming in your research. They are an accepted element of academic writing intended to keep the reader focused on the research problem by explicitly defining the conceptual boundaries and scope of your study. It addresses any critical questions in the reader's mind of, "Why the hell didn't the author examine this?"

III. The Narrative Flow

Issues to keep in mind that will help the narrative flow in your introduction:

  • Your introduction should clearly identify the subject area of interest. A simple strategy to follow is to use key words from your title in the first few sentences of the introduction. This will help focus the introduction on the topic at the appropriate level and ensures that you get to the subject matter quickly without losing focus, or discussing information that is too general.
  • Establish context by providing a brief and balanced review of the pertinent published literature that is available on the subject. The key is to summarize for the reader what is known about the specific research problem before you did your analysis. This part of your introduction should not represent a comprehensive literature review--that comes next. It consists of a general review of the important, foundational research literature [with citations] that establishes a foundation for understanding key elements of the research problem. See the drop-down menu under this tab for "Background Information" regarding types of contexts.
  • Clearly state the hypothesis that you investigated. When you are first learning to write in this format it is okay, and actually preferable, to use a past statement like, "The purpose of this study was to...." or "We investigated three possible mechanisms to explain the...."
  • Why did you choose this kind of research study or design? Provide a clear statement of the rationale for your approach to the problem studied. This will usually follow your statement of purpose in the last paragraph of the introduction.

IV. Engaging the Reader

The overarching goal of your introduction is to make your readers want to read your paper. The introduction should grab the reader's attention. Strategies for doing this can be to:

  1. Open with a compelling story,
  2. Include a strong quotation or a vivid, perhaps unexpected anecdote,
  3. Pose a provocative or thought-provoking question,
  4. Describe a puzzling scenario or incongruity, or
  5. Cite a stirring example or case study that illustrates why the research problem is important.

NOTE:  Choose only one strategy for engaging your readers; avoid giving an impression that your paper is more flash than substance.

Freedman, Leora  and Jerry Plotnick. Introductions and Conclusions. University College Writing Centre. University of Toronto; Introduction. The Structure, Format, Content, and Style of a Journal-Style Scientific Paper. Department of Biology. Bates College; Introductions. The Writing Center. University of North Carolina; Introductions. The Writer’s Handbook. Writing Center. University of Wisconsin, Madison; Introductions, Body Paragraphs, and Conclusions for an Argument Paper. The Writing Lab and The OWL. Purdue University; “Writing Introductions.” In Good Essay Writing: A Social Sciences Guide. Peter Redman. 4th edition. (London: Sage, 2011), pp. 63-70; Resources for Writers: Introduction Strategies. Program in Writing and Humanistic Studies. Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Sharpling, Gerald. Writing an Introduction. Centre for Applied Linguistics, University of Warwick; Samraj, B. “Introductions in Research Articles: Variations Across Disciplines.” English for Specific Purposes 21 (2002): 1–17; Swales, John and Christine B. Feak. Academic Writing for Graduate Students: Essential Skills and Tasks. 2nd edition. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, 2004; Writing Your Introduction. Department of English Writing Guide. George Mason University.

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