Skip to main content

Introductions and Conclusions


An introduction is the first impression a reader gets about the writing. It introduces the subject of the writing, grabs the reader's attention, offers an overview of the piece of writing and leads into the thesis statement.

An introduction starts with a general statement that attracts the attention of the reader. This can be done in several ways: by telling an anecdote, by making a controversial statement, or by sharing an interesting statistic, to name a few.

Also, the introduction provides the thesis statement, which is the central argument or main idea of the writing. In addition, the introduction can provide a brief overview of the ideas that will be discussed in the writing. For example, the writer may state, “This paper documents the background of the problem, explains the causes and effects of the situation and poses a possible solution to the problem.”

Regardless of the structure, the introduction needs to ease the reader into the writing by providing an outline of what to expect in the written work.

For additional guidance on introductions, download the Writing Introductions tip sheet.


The conclusion is important because it leaves a lasting impression of the writing in the mind of the reader. It should provide a summary of the main ideas or points raised in the writing without simply repeating exactly what the writing said in the body of the work.

The beginning of the conclusion can restate the thesis statement in a different way than how it appeared in the introduction. The next part of the conclusion can review the main issues or ideas in the writing, provide recommendations or present solutions. Lastly, the final statement in a conclusion usually provides something memorable for the reader, a statement about the future of the issue or a call to action (i.e. something that the writer would like the reader to do after reading the writing).

Ultimately, a conclusion should “wrap up” the piece of writing.

For additional guidance, download the Writing Conclusions tip sheet.