Dissertation Introduction Writing

Introduction to your written dissertation is a serious thing, and not something to be taken lightly. The introduction sets the premise for the rest of the dissertation. A weak introduction and a weak argument means the rest of the paper is also going to be weak. The paper needs to start out on strong footing, making a serious argument that can be backed up with facts throughout the dissertation.

Building a strong introduction means a strong argument

A dissertation is centered around your thesis. The thesis makes an argument. You make a statement like, “Ice cream trucks are seldom green.” You need to then backup this statement. What research and analysis do you have to back this up? What scientific data can you use to quantify your statement and re-enforce it? This is important to medical professionals, research personell, and anyone trying to build a background in a scientific field. To obtain credit for a discovery, you have to prove not only the discovery has been made, but what kind of benefits this discovery may bring to the world. Does your introduction set enough precedence that your argument or statement can be backed up throughout the course of the dissertation?

Introduce the argument

The thesis is the last sentence of your first paragraph. You want your thesis to be brief, while making the statement you need it to make. If you have concrete data to backup your thesis (and you better), the more concrete the data, the stronger your thesis will sound. Never use any of the following words in your thesis, or introduction: perhaps, maybe, possible, potential, etc. Avoid any words in the introduction (and especially thesis) that breed misconception. Avoid any statements or words that are the opposite of clarity. Your argument should be fluid, linear, and re-enforced.

Imagine you are a sales person, and your thesis is what you are selling.