8 junio, 2024

Introductory paragraph: concept, types and examples

The introductory paragraphs They are those that give an overview of what will be explained in the rest of the text. That is, they refer to the central theme, the writer’s position and the arguments that will be used.

The objective of these paragraphs is to give the reader an accurate idea of ​​what the text is about. It is the first meeting between the writer and the reader, so it can be love at first sight or total rejection.

Here lies their importance: they are the opportunity to engage the reader so that they continue reading.

Structure of the introductory paragraph

Although it depends a bit on the type of text in which it is going to be applied, the introductory paragraph usually follows a general structure:

– Approach or organizing phrase: introductory phrase that provides us with the topic to be discussed.

– First element exposition: exposition of a first concept that breaks with the affirmation of the introductory sentence. It can be for, against or neutral.

– Second element exhibition: exhibition of a second concept that clashes with the first element described above.

– Exhibition of other elements: more elements can be captured, such as the first or second. They all serve to create a conceptual map of the topic to be discussed.

– Development: the order in which the text will be developed is exposed.

– Closing: it is optional. You can capture a small reflection without anticipating the purpose or conclusions of the topic.

Main Types of Introductory Paragraphs

1- Academic essay

Academic papers have formats. These are established to create parameters within which to evaluate the performance of individuals.

Academic introductions should specify the topic they deal with, but not reveal the arguments, but refer to them in a general way.


“All fields of study are related in one way or another to the search for truth, and as they develop, each successive phase of growth contains insights and clear insights, elements that over time may be regarded as more or less confusing, contradictory and even incorrect. Nevertheless, each generation of scholars builds on the efforts of their predecessors.»

first paragraph of Essay on the current situation of comparative education: a western point of view (1979) by Max A. Eckstein.

2- Academic article

Academic essays are distinguished from academic articles because the former are of an investigative nature, while the articles deal with current circumstances.

The introductory paragraphs in the academic articles should give the context that surrounds the subject that they have to deal with.


“The analysis of health problems with the so-called approach of determinants
social and economic issues is a central issue on the agenda of the World Organization for
Health (WHO) and the Ministries of Health of several countries. It is also a framework
reference for research in different areas of public health and epidemiology.”

Initial paragraph of the article Social determinants of health: beyond risk factors (2009) by Luz Stella Álvarez Castaño

3- Journalistic note

Journalistic notes are short texts about a specific and current situation. Therefore, these must explain the social or political circumstances surrounding the event.


“The president of the National Human Rights Commission, Raúl Plascencia Villanueva, said that on average 4 out of 10 children in each state of the country suffer from school abuse. He warned that it is necessary to join efforts and design new strategies in order to prevent and eradicate the phenomenon of school bullying, called bullying word derived from the Dutch language.

Note About bullying (2013).

4- News article

The articles are longer and follow events that take place over the long term. In these cases, the introductory paragraphs should be a summary of everything that the news reports. These facts are then explained in detail, in the development of the article.


«The traditional method of making Panama hats has been recognized as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, as announced today by the intergovernmental committee of this organization on the South Korean island of Jeju.»

Extracted from the article UNESCO recognizes Panama hats as intangible heritage (2017).

5- literary narrative

In literature the first paragraph is of capital importance for the writer. In this area, capturing the reader’s attention is vital.

These should give a preview of the events that will follow, as well as clues as to what has happened before that may be important. At the same time, it is necessary to introduce the main characters.


“I sing oh Muse! from Achilles, son of Peleus, the fatal anger that caused infinite evils to the Greeks; who precipitated to hell the valorous souls of many heroes, and made them serve as food for dogs and all the birds of prey – thus the will of Jupiter was fulfilled – since, for the first time, he separated the son of Atreus in a dispute , chief of the Greeks and the divine Achilles.”

first paragraph of The Iliad of Homer. Translation by Laura Mestre Hevia

6- Article ecyclopedic

As for encyclopedic articles, they should have introductions that tell the basics of the concept, so that there is at least a superficial understanding of the topic.


“Latin America or Latin America is an ethno-geographical concept that appeared in the 19th century to identify a region of the American continent with the majority of languages ​​derived from Latin (mainly Spanish or Portuguese and to a lesser extent French).”

article about Latin America (2017).

7- Introductory paragraph of theoretical framework

The introduction in the theoretical framework will expose a small idea about the most important concepts that will be treated in it.


Healthy eating is based on the consumption of fruits and vegetables, being the most important contribution in the human food pyramid. The majority of nutrition experts have reached this agreement, valuing the vitamin or antioxidant properties that vegetables provide to humans.

What has not reached the consensus among nutritionists is the adequate amount to consume fruits and vegetables each day. The famous message “take five pieces of fruits and vegetables” is more in doubt than ever.


An academic Essay; The opening paragraph. american.edu
Examples of great introductory paragraphs. (2017) thoughtco.com
How to write an introduction. (2017) scribendi.com
How Do I Write an Intro, Conclusion, & Body Paragraph?. (2017) lsa.umich.edu
Examples of introductory paragraphs (2015) aboutespanol.com

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