How To Be Brief When Writing A Dissertation Introduction

The Introduction

It is the gateway to the rest of your dissertation. You cannot write a good introduction without knowing what the rest of your thesis says. It may seem to be a relatively straightforward portion of the writing process, but there is more to it than most people realize. It cannot be too lengthy, it cannot be too short. This needs to have the proper elements in order for it to be just right.

Writing a brief introduction

One of the main problems that students face while writing this section is that it isn’t brief, which gives rise to its own set of consequences. Here are a few things that you should keep in mind while writing a brief introduction for your dissertation:

  • Reader’s attention -- The point mentioned here should not only be meant to catch the attention of the reader but also to maintain it and stimulate enough interest and curiosity for the reader to continue reading.

  • Language -- The writing language needs to be simple enough so that it makes some sense even to a non-expert. This is true for the rest of the body of your dissertation as well.

  • Focus -- The worst thing that you can do while writing the introduction to your dissertation is to lose focus and ramble. Do not use over-generalized statements or waste time and effort by “stating the obvious”.

  • Proper ingredients and structure -- All introductions to a dissertation, in theory, should have a similar structure. It should:

    • contain a definition of the subject,

    • make a statement on the importance of the subject,

    • justify you dealing with the subject or indicate the uniqueness of your work or state how your dissertation will contribute to the theoretical understanding of the topic,

    • mention any previous work or research on the subject,

    • mention the limitations of the field of your research,

    • State the different perspectives on the topic.

    The above sub-points are only guidelines and you may use all of them or most of the points mentioned using your discretion for a healthy beginning.

  • Finish the introduction last -- It does not mean that you should think about the initial section when you are almost done with your dissertation. You should start on your first draft at the very beginning. However, you should continue to re-draft and edit as your ideas develop.