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What Is the College Essay Introduction For?

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This leads to the next tip…. If you summarize, the admissions officer does not need to read the rest of your essay. You want to start your essay with something that makes the reader want to read until the very end.

Once you have drawn the reader in through the first one to three sentences, the last sentence in your introductory paragraph should explain clearly and briefly what the point of the whole essay is. That is, why you are using this person, place, or thing. What does it say about you? Create Mystery or Intrigue in your Introduction. It is not necessary or recommended that your first sentence give away the subject matter. Raise questions in the minds of the admissions officers to force them to read on.

Appeal to their senses and emotions to make them relate to your subject matter. The below essays were not edited by EssayEdge Editors. They appear as they were initially reviewed by admissions officers. This is the type of introduction you would use for a standardized test or a history paper. A typical standard introduction answers one or more of the six basic questions: It gives the reader an idea of what to expect.

You should try to stay away from simply restating the question unless you are limited by a word count and need to get to the point quickly. Your basic academic introduction or thesis statement is best used as the follow-up sentence to one of the more creative introductions described below. Iran was in deep political turmoil when I left, as it is today. This introduction is clear and to the point, and will prepare your reader for the ideas you want to discuss. However, it is rather unexciting and will not immediately engage your reader.

As mentioned, you should try to preface it with a more creative statement. In addition, it makes one typical error. Through all of my accomplishments and disappointments, I have always been especially proud of the dedication and fervor I possess for my personal beliefs and values.

This is a very effective introduction to an essay about your personality. Mentioning pride is a good way to indicate how important your beliefs and values are to you. In a sentence like this, however, it would be better to use "Throughout" rather than "Through. A creative introduction catches the reader off-guard with an opening statement that leaves the reader smiling or wondering what the rest of the essay contains. Imagine yourself a freshman in high school, beginning your independence.

As the oldest child, I was the first to begin exploring the worlds of dating, extra-curricular clubs and upperclassmen. However, one afternoon my parents sat my two sisters and me down. The power of this introduction is that it places the reader in your shoes, making him or her more interested in what takes place in the rest of the essay.

Its main mistake is that its informality gives the essay a slightly hokey or corny tone. Although a greater degree of informality is allowed in a creative essay, you must be careful not to take it too far. I am a dynamic figure, often seen scaling walls and crushing ice. I have been known to remodel train stations on my lunch breaks, making them more efficient in the area of heat retention.

I translate ethnic slurs for Cuban refugees, I write award-winning operas, I manage time efficiently. Occasionally, I tread water for three days in a row. This introduction is both creative and effective.

At the same time, its light tone avoids sounding too obnoxious. As a note, you should remember that good use of semicolons will impress your reader: An Action Introduction takes the reader into the middle of an action sequence.

By not building up to the story, it forces the reader to read on to find out not only the significance of this moment in time, but what led up to and followed it. It is perfect for short essays where space must be conserved or for narrative essays that begin with a story. A confused eleven-year-old girl, I sat and listened to my father pace. My heart racing, I watched the clock, amazed that time could crawl so slowly. I heard my father repeating the words "yes, yes, of course. This is the kind of introduction that will immediately intrigue your reader because it begins with a very unusual declaration.

Note that you should try to avoid repeating key words. In this instance, it would be easy to avoid repeating the word "beauty. Like the action introduction, the dialogue introduction brings the reader directly into the action, only this time in the form of dialogue. If you are writing about an influential figure in your life, you can mention a quote from this person that exemplifies the importance that he or she had on your life.

Echoing the prejudiced, ignorant sentiment that I had grown up with, I believed it was wrong to become seriously involved with a person who does not follow the Hindu religion and is not a member of the Indian race. Multicultural awareness is a key aspect of fitting in well at a university, and admissions officers are very aware of this.

Thus, it is an excellent idea to mention how you expanded your cultural sensitivity. Beginning the essay by admitting that you were once less tolerant is a compelling way to demonstrate just how much you have grown as a person.

On the verge of losing consciousness, I asked myself: I had no answer; my mind blanked out from exhaustion and terror. I had no time to second-guess myself with a terrifying man leaning over my shoulder yelling: The power of this introduction comes from its attention to detail.

The question "Why am I doing this? With such strong supporting evidence, the quotation takes on a life of its own. Your reader will find himself thinking, "Why would anyone do that?

Rather than using a traditional thesis statement you can put forth a societal observation that ties into the theme of your essay. This can be very effective if the statement is unique and gives a glimpse into how you view the world.

It can be detrimental if your statement is debatable or unclear. Make sure that if you use this form of introduction that no admissions office will take offense to it.

High school is a strange time. After three years of trying to develop an identity and friends in middle school, students are expected to mature immediately on the first day of ninth grade. Be careful not to make statements in your introduction that seem too exaggerated or unrealistic. I have old hands. What are "old" hands? How has having these hands affected the author? There was no possibility of taking a walk that day. Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre. Who wanted to go for a walk?

And why was this person being prevented from going? Look at how much specificity this sentence packs in less than 20 words. Each noun and adjective is chosen for its ability to convey yet another detail. This sentence manages to hit every stereotype about Wisconsin held by outsiders—football, cheese, polar winters, backwardness, and guns—and this piling on gives us a good sense of place while also creating enough hyperbole to be funny. At the same time, the sentence raises the tantalizing question: High, high above the North Pole, on the first day of , two professors of English Literature approached each other at a combined velocity of miles per hour.

David Lodge, Changing Places. If string theory is really true, then the entire world is made up of strings, and I cannot tie a single one. This sentence hints that the rest of the essay will continue playing with linked, albeit not typically connected, concepts. In just six words, this sentence upends everything we think we know about what happens to human beings.

Is this person about to declare herself to be totally selfish and uncaring about the less fortunate? We want to know the story that would lead someone to this kind of conclusion. So many amazing details here. Why is the Colonel being executed? What does "discovering" ice entail? How does he go from ice-discoverer to military commander of some sort to someone condemned to capital punishment? To work well, your question should be especially specific, come out of left field, or pose a surprising hypothetical.

How does an agnostic Jew living in the Diaspora connect to Israel? This is a thorny opening, raising questions about the difference between being an ethnic Jew and practicing the religion of Judaism, and the obligations of Jews who live outside of Israel to those who live in Israel and vice versa.

While traveling through the daily path of life, have you ever stumbled upon a hidden pocket of the universe? The lesson you learned should be slightly surprising not necessarily intuitive and something that someone else might disagree with.

The reader wants to know more. All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina. Did he draw the right conclusion here? How did he come to this realization? This is the place in your essay where you go from small to big—from the life experience you describe in detail to the bigger point this experience illustrates about your world and yourself.

Typically, the pivot sentence will come at the end of your introductory section, about halfway through the essay. I say sentence, but this section could be more than one sentence though ideally no longer than two or three. So how do you make the turn?

Here are three ways to do this, with real-life examples from college essays published by colleges. In this pivot, you gesture out from the specific experience you describe to the overarching realization you had during it.

Think of helper phrases such as "that was the moment I realized" and "never again would I. Suddenly, two things simultaneously clicked. One was the lock on the door. I actually succeeded in springing it. But in that moment I realized that the self-deprecating jokes were there for a reason. Not because I had let my failures get the best of me, but because I had learned to make the best of my failures.

This pivot similarly focuses on a "that moment" of illuminated clarity. Not only does she describe her humor as "self-deprecating," but she also demonstrates what she means with that great "befriended the ground" line.

It was on this first educational assignment that I realized how much could be accomplished through an animal education program—more, in some cases, than the aggregate efforts of all of the rehabilitators. I found that I had been naive in my assumption that most people knew as much about wildlife as I did, and that they shared my respect for animals. This is another classically constructed pivot, as J. The widening of scope happens at once as we go from a highly specific "first educational assignment" to the more general realization that "much" could be accomplished through these kinds of programs.

This state of discovery is something I strive for on a daily basis. My goal is to make all the ideas in my mind fit together like the gears of a Swiss watch. After cataloging and detailing the many interesting thoughts that flow through her brain in a specific hour, Aubrey uses the pivot to explain that this is what every waking hour is like for her "on a daily basis.

And her pivot lets us know that her example is a demonstration of how her mind works generally. Our return brought so much back for me. Dad haggling with the jewelry sellers, his minute examination of pots at a trading post, the affection he had for chilies. I was scared that my love for the place would be tainted by his death, diminished without him there as my guide.

That fear was part of what kept my mother and me away for so long. Once there, though, I was relieved to realize that Albuquerque still brings me closer to my father. Here are some ways to think about making this transition: My true reward of having Stanley is that he opened the door to the world of botany.

I would never have invested so much time learning about the molecular structure or chemical balance of plants if not for taking care of him. Without having to "take care of him," Michaela "would never have invested so much time learning" about plant biology. By leaving me free to make mistakes and chase wild dreams, my father was always able to help ground me back in reality.

We combine world-class admissions counselors with our data-driven, proprietary admissions strategies. We know what kinds of students colleges want to admit. We want to get you admitted to your dream schools.

Learn more about PrepScholar Admissions to maximize your chance of getting in. A great pivot is like great parkour—sharp, fast, and coming on a slightly unexpected curve. A blue seventh place athletic ribbon hangs from my mantel. Every day, as I walk into my living room, the award mockingly congratulates me as I smile. Ironically, the blue seventh place ribbon resembles the first place ribbon in color; so, if I just cover up the tip of the seven, I may convince myself that I championed the fourth heat.

But, I never dare to wipe away the memory of my seventh place swim; I need that daily reminder of my imperfection. I need that seventh place. Two years ago, I joined the no-cut swim team.

That winter, my coach unexpectedly assigned me to swim the freestyle. After stressing for hours about swimming 20 laps in a competition, I mounted the blocks, took my mark, and swam.

Around lap 14, I looked around at the other lanes and did not see anyone. However, as I finally completed my race and lifted my arms up in victory to the eager applause of the fans, I looked up at the score board.

I had finished my race in last place. In fact, I left the pool two minutes after the second-to-last competitor, who now stood with her friends, wearing all her clothes. It dangles information just out of reach, making the reader want to know more: Why does this definitively non-winning ribbon hang in such a prominent place of pride?

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What Is the College Essay Introduction For? Before we talk about how to start a college essay, let's discuss the role of the introduction. Just as your college essay is your chance to introduce yourself to the admissions office of your target college, your essay's beginning is your chance to introduce your writing.

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The college application essay is your chance to show schools who you are. Learn how to write a college essay that sets you apart. Learn how to . Essay Structure. Writing an academic essay means fashioning a coherent set of ideas into an argument. often appears at the beginning of the essay, between the introduction and the first analytical section, but might also appear near the beginning of the specific section to which it's relevant. A common structural flaw in college essays.