According to DICTIONARYFORALL, the introduction is the information of the subject on which the dissertation will deal. The introductory paragraph is fundamental. it needs to be very clear and draw attention to the most important development topics. Before we begin to study the introduction , we will have to stick to two very important aspects: the theme and the title.
Theme: It is the subject that is written about, that is, the idea that will be defended throughout the dissertation . The theme must be an abstract element. Never refer to it as part of the dissertation.
Title : It is an expression, usually short and without a verb, placed before the dissertation. If there is no verb in the title, period is not used. You should not skip a line after the title. Capitalization of all words except articles, prepositions and conjunctions is optional.
Although the title is important for a dissertation, I think it is also dangerous, because, as the student is not used to lecturing, he may be mistaken and give a title that does not correspond to the core of the essay. So I believe that the ideal would be to place a title only when the entrance exam requires it.
How to make a good introduction
The first paragraph of the essay can be done in several different ways, check out the tips:
01) Historical trajectory:
To trace the historical trajectory is to present an analogy between elements of the past and the present.
Since an analogy will be presented, then the elements must be similar; there must be similarity between the arguments presented, that is, we will only use the historical trajectory, when there is a fact in the past that is comparable, in some way, to another in the present.
When presenting the historical trajectory in the introduction, one should discuss, in development, each element in a single paragraph. Do not mix elements from different periods in the same paragraph. The historical trajectory makes exemplification convincing; this argument should only be used, if there is knowledge that legitimizes the historical source.
02) Comparing socially, geographically or historically.
It is also to present an analogy between elements, but without seeking argument in the past . It is comparing two countries, two facts, two characters, in short, comparing two elements, to prove the theme.
Remember that this is an introduction, so the comparison will only be presented so that, in the development, each element of the comparison will be discussed in a paragraph.
03) Conceptualizing or defining an idea or situation.
In some dissertation themes, keywords of extreme importance for argumentation emerge. In these cases, you can start writing with the definition of that word, with the meaning of it, to later, in development, work with examples of proof.
04) Contesting an idea or quote, contradicting it, in parts.
When the theme presents an idea with which it is not entirely agreed, one can work with this method: agree with the theme, in parts, that is, argue that the idea of the theme is true, but that there are controversies; to argue that the subject matter is controversial, that there are elements that prove it, and elements that disagree with it, equally.
Do not forget that the development has to be consistent with the introduction, be in harmony with it, that is, if you work with this method, the development must contain both proofs, each in a paragraph.
05) Refuting the theme, totally contradicting.
To refute means to refute the arguments; contest the assertions; not agree with something; fail; be opposed to something; counter with evidence; disprove; to deny. Therefore, to refute the theme is to write, in the introduction, the opposite of what was presented by the theme. Great care must be taken, as it is not just writing the opposite, but showing that one is against what is written. The ideal, in this case, is to start the introduction with Contrary to what is believed …
Do not forget, again, that the development has to be consistent with the introduction, be in harmony with it, that is, if you work with this method, the development must contain only elements contrary to the theme. Be careful not to contradict yourself. If, in the introduction, it is favorable to the theme, present, in the development, only elements favorable to it; if not, present only contrary elements.
06) Developing a series of questions.
You can start writing with a series of questions. However, be careful! They must be questions that lead to questions and reflections, and not empty questions that lead to nothing or just generic answers.
The questions must be answered, in development, with coherent and important arguments, each in a paragraph. So use this method only when you already have the answers, that is, choose first the arguments that will be used in the development and elaborate questions about them, to work as the introduction of the dissertation.
07) Transforming the introduction into a question.
The same as the previous one, but with just one question.
08) Developing an enumeration of information.
When you are sure that the information is true, you can use it in the introduction and then discuss it, one by one, in the development.
09) Characterizing spaces or aspects.
You can start the introduction with a description of places or times, or with a narration of facts. It should be a short description or narration, just to start writing in an interesting, curious way. Don’t get carried away !! Do not turn the dissertation into a description , much less a narration .
10) Summary of what will be presented in the development.
One of the easiest ways to prepare the introduction is to present a summary of what will be discussed in the development. In this case, it is necessary to carefully plan the entire essay before starting it, because, in the introduction, the topics to be discussed in the development will be presented. Care must be taken not to present too many topics, otherwise the dissertation will be only expository and not argumentative. Each topic presented in the introduction should be discussed in the development in an entire paragraph. You should not mix them in one paragraph, nor use two or more paragraphs, to discuss the same subject. Ideally, only two or three topics are presented for discussion.
The easiest way to prepare the introduction is to use the paraphrase, which consists of rewriting the topic, using your own words. Care must be taken not only to replace the words of the theme with synonyms, as this will demonstrate a lack of creativity; the best is to totally restructure the theme, really using “YOUR” words.
Observe what Michaelis – Modern Dictionary of the Portuguese Language brings, regarding the definition of the word paraphrase: Explanation or more developed translation of a text using words different from those used in it. Therefore, your sentence must be more developed than the sentence presented as a theme, and the words must be different, not synonymous.
Example sentences, for the beginning of the introduction:
Here are some phrases that can help, to start the introduction. Do not take these phrases as an infallible recipe. Before using them, analyze the topic well, plan the development tirelessly, use your intelligence, to be sure of what will be included in your dissertation. Only after that, use these phrases:
It is common knowledge that…
Everyone knows that, in our country, there have been times …
In this case, I used circumstance of place (in our country) and time (for some time). This is just to show that it is possible to add different circumstances in the introduction, not necessarily those that are here. Another element with which great care must be taken is the pronoun se. In this case, it is a passive particle, so the verb must agree with the element that comes forward (sing. Or pl.)
It is thought, very often, of …
The same reasoning as the previous one, now with the circumstance of mode (very often).
Much has been discussed, recently, about …
Much is debated, nowadays, …
Passive particle again. Beware of agreement.
The (A)… .. is of fundamental importance in….
It is of fundamental importance to….
It is indisputable that … / It is undeniable that …
Much is discussed about the importance of …
It is often commented on … It is
not uncommon to learn, through …, of
Although many believe that …. (refutation)
Contrary to what many believe … (refutation)
It can be said that, due to … (due to, by) …
When doing an analysis of society, one seeks to discover the causes of….
Perhaps it is difficult to say why…
When analyzing (a, os, as)…, it is possible to know (a, os, as)…., Because…