How to Write a Great Essay Introduction

The hardest part of writing an essay is starting, so write your introduction with this in mind. Related to the point above, the introduction can and should be revised several times as your argument shifts. It can be helpful to write a messy draft of your introduction and thesis to kickstart and guide your writing during your first draft; then, you can return to them and make them stronger.

As soon as you’ve planned your essay, you’ll be able to get a sense of achievement by writing the introduction. There are times when you need to make small edits to quotations to make them work out of context, remove unnecessary information, add emphasis or acknowledge errors. A quotation is an unchanged piece of text from a source that you use in your own writing. You should use quotations sparingly, for example when you want to include definitions or strong statements. If you need more help with your essay writing, our professional academics have considerable experience in a wide range of subject areas, and clearly demonstrate this expertise in their work.

Signalling a quotation

For chapters in edited books, the editors often give a summary of the chapters in their introduction. You should not use this instead of reading the whole source, but it is a good first place to look as you can get an idea what the author/editor thinks is important. Summarising shows you are reading critically and able to pick out which points from a source are relevant to the argumentyouare making. Like paraphrasing, it shows that you have understood the information and are able to express it in your own writing style.

how to start a quote in an essay

Write out three to five key points that you want to make in your overall argument. This strategy forces you to assimilate properly what you are reading before then exchanging the source of information for your notes or essay.

Shortening a quote

If some parts of a passage are redundant or irrelevant, you can shorten the quote by removing words, phrases, or sentences and replacing them with an ellipsis (…). When you include a quote in Harvard style, you must add a Harvard in-text citation giving the author’s last name, the year of publication, and a page number if available. Any full stop or comma appears after the citation, not within the quotation marks.

An essay is a continuous piece of writing in which ideas, propositions, research and justifications are put forward and analysed in the form of a series of paragraphs. One of the best ways to improve your writing is by reading good writers.

How to reference longer quotations

If an author coined a particular term or phrase (e.g. ‘the gig-economy’), it is appropriate to quote this phrase directly. Also, instead of putting the date and page number in parentheses after the author’s surname, this information goes in the footnote. You can cite the quote introduction sentence starters author’s surname and the date of the publication in the narrative above the quote. However, you should, place the page number in parentheses at the end of the quote. Alternatively, you can place the surname, date, and page number in parentheses at the end of the quote.

how to start a quote in an essay

So, to get you started on polishing your own essay writing ability, try using the words in this list as an inspirational starting point. We have helped 10,000s of undergraduate, Masters and PhD students to maximise their grades in essays, dissertations, model-exam answers, applications and other materials. The name of the author of the source does not have to appear in the main text, but must be acknowledged in a parenthetical citation or in a footnote, as in this example. Note that opening or closing a paragraph or assignment with a quote is not good style in university-level writing. Long quotes are often used in assignments which focus on analysing a particular text closely .

How to separate a longer quotation

Temporarily deactivate your accounts or get a friend to change your passwords for 24 hours. Turn off your phone and resist the urge to check social media. Although you might be tempted to mainline coffee into your veins, try to avoid too much caffeine early on. Caffeine is basically the opposite of slow-release energy, and you’ll find yourself crashing after a few hours. There are many reasons students find themselves in this pressurised situation . We’re not here to judge, just help you make the best of a tricky situation. You had every intention of getting your essay done before the deadline, but sometimes life gets in the way.

  1. Direct quotes are most effective when you integrate them into your own sentences.
  2. During the writing of an assignment – when you willstill citethe author of the original text.
  3. If you’re reading this guide, we suspect you haven’t entirely embraced that mantra.
  4. Please note that for some disciplines using Harvard you may be required to give page numbers in your in-text citations for paraphrased text – please check with your lecturers.
  5. If you want to cite this source, you can copy and paste the citation or click the ‘Cite this Scribbr article’ button to automatically add the citation to our free Reference Generator.
  6. As you research or read for your report, keep a note of all the books, newspapers and magazines, websites or journal articles that have helped you.
  7. The exact format of a quote depends on its length and on which citation style you are using.

Below are some examples of ways to build short quotes into your writing. Citations are all in Harvard style – check the style your department prefers. These short quotations are referred to as ’embedded’ or ‘run on’ because they are not set apart from the rest of the text. Direct quotes allow a writer to analyze specific passages in a source. This citation style focuses on easily citing texts from different time periods.

Browse Topics

You can refine the wording at the editing stage, and it’s much easier to think about style once you’ve typed up everything you want to say first. Create a mini-outline in your introduction so you signpost exactly what it is you’re planning to argue. Once you’ve done this, actually writing the essay should just be a case of bulking out each point and filling in the gaps. If how to write a commentary essay you’ve been given a choice of essay questions, choose the one you have the most knowledge about, or have strong opinions on. Remember to schedule in a few short 10-minute breaks (one every 45–60 minutes or so should do the trick). Giving your brain a rest is key to keeping your overall productivity levels up, and stretching or doing some brief exercises will also help.

The most compelling introductions start with something specific — a relevant anecdote, a textual detail, a moment that sparks your interest or provokes your question. Then, they body paragraph examples provide the necessary context and orientation before honing in on a specific argument. Your introduction should state outright the argument that you are trying to make.

Using quotation effectively

As neither the idea nor the wording is your own, you need to signal to your reader that the words are a quotation and also include a reference to where the original can be found. If you don’t signal this clearly, you run the risk of plagiarism, as without quotation marks, the reader will falsely assume that the words are yours. As an academic writer, it’s essential to show your reader the ultimate purpose essay to kill a mockingbird a block quote serves. This way, you clearly state how the quote fits in your analysis or argument. If the text before the quote is a sentence, consider using a colon to introduce your quote. However, if the quote is part of the sentence that comes before or after it, there is no need to add extra punctuation. The minimum length required for block quotations varies between multiple citation styles.

Be careful when quoting to copy the words of your source exactly! Do not change things so that the quote fits neatly into your sentence; if necessary, change your sentence in order to accommodate the quote.

Cite Them Right guide

Quotation is one way to incorporate what you’ve read into your writing. If you use someone else’s words in your assignment, it is crucial to mark them clearly as a quotation and give a reference to the source. It’s also important to understand how to make quotations work effectively thematic essay definition to support your argument. First, analyse the question and decide what it wants you to do. Your notes will vary according to you and your style – make any that seem relevant to the subject area, at any time – put the information into a box, or special essay file.

  1. Kennedy notes that although there are some longer pieces in Douglas Dunn’s second collection, ‘the majority favour the short forms that dominated his first book Terry Street.
  2. The information below explains what quoting, paraphrasing and summarising are, and how you can use them in your writing.
  3. If an author coined a particular term or phrase (e.g. ‘the gig-economy’), it is appropriate to quote this phrase directly.
  4. To integrate a source, it’s often best to paraphrase, which means putting the passage into your own words.
  5. A block quote is a long quote formatted as a separate ‘block’ of text.

Note how double quotation marks separate the direct quote from the rest of the sentence. Single quotation marks separate Carraway’s father’s quote from Carraway’s words. To convince the reader of your argument, interpretation or position on a topic, it’s often helpful to include quotes that support your point. Quotes from primary sources are especially credible as evidence.

The paper aims to explore the issues surrounding the user conceptualisation of academic libraries. The paper will solidify the role of academic libraries as learning spaces and problematise how libraries are conceptualised by users. Seglem and Witte suggested that this was an even more important benefit than the widening of literacy in general, especially for students who have been previously “burned by print” (p. 224). Seglem and Witte suggested that this was an even more important benefit than the widening of literacy in general, especially for students who have been previously “burned by print” .

how to start a quote in an essay

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