Tips for writing an effective introduction
- The introduction provides the base or theme of the manuscript.
It is a detailed description of the background of the paper. It is a reference point for other studies that paved the way for the concept of the article. It reflects our ideology or hypothesis, therefore the language, citation of relevant work should be inflow to maintain clarity and keep the audience retained. A good introduction prompts the reader to continue reading the methods, results, and discussion.
- Have a generous Beginning then squeeze down
The initial starting of the introduction should be elaborate and subsequently tapered to zoom the focus on the topic along with sufficient background information.
- Highlighting the objective of the article
The relevance of the topic should be clearly stated. It should state what the author should expect at the end of the manuscript.
- Cite extensively but not exhaustively
Recent work should be incorporated rather than very old ones as scientific research is continuously evolving at a fast pace. Too much citation complicates and can lengthy the introduction.
- Citing many references at a single point
Citing too many at one point doesn’t give a detailed view of individual work and is difficult to assimilate by the reader. Only references that are the most relevant ones with an elaborate description of them should be cited.
- The research question should be stated
The research question should be clearly stated such as “In the current study we wanted to examine the deregulation of protein X”. This will clarify the reader about the subject and also encourage the reader to think about the topic.
- Organizational overview
It’s an important constituent in technology papers. It shows the reader the content in each section of the article. For example, in section 3 we discuss the statistical analysis methods.
- An introduction should be precise
An introduction is not a review paper. Hence, too much writing can dilute the focus and interest of the reader.
- Explain the facts
The point you want to emphasize should be explained. Instead of writing that “hormonal regulation is important.” we should write hormonal regulation is important to the proper functioning of the reproduction system.
- Don’t over-explain
Results or research outcomes should not be cited here, rather only an overview should be mentioned.
- Introduction as per Journal requirement
Journal guidelines should be checked while writing an introduction for word count and other journals specific formats.
Introduction writing should start way in advance from the actual experimentation. It acts as a road map to remind the author about his next step of action. As a result, the manuscript can be completed way in time without any diversion. Also, since readers get the overall glimpse of the paper in the introduction, therefore it’s a crucial section for deciding whether to continue reading or not.