Video transcript for how to write an essay introduction

The transcript below is for the free video lesson: How to write an introduction for an IELTS essay.

Introduction Lesson

Hello in this lesson I’m gonna show you how to write an introduction paragraph for your IELTS writing task to essay. Now this is the essay title we’re going to look at. “The best way to improve health is to do regular exercise. To what extent do you agree?” Well let’s first look at the statement. Now IELTS have given us this which is the best way, it’s a method, it’s a solution and it’s a solution to improving health. So our essay is all about improving health and their solution, their best solution, is to do regular exercise. That is what IELTS have said. That’s the statement and we have to give our opinion, to what extent do you agree. What does this mean “to what extent”? Well that means how much do you agree. You don’t need to agree or disagree. You need to think about it and think do you agree with all the sentence, is there something that you don’t agree with? Do you agree with most of it? So that’s how you analyze it.

1. Introduction Hooks

Right well, let’s have a look at what information we need to put in our introduction. Now for many academic essays there are three parts to the introduction. There’s the hook, there’s a background statement and there’s a thesis statement. So let’s look at each part of this. The first one the hook now a hook is sentence that has lots of interest in it so that immediately the reader wants to continue reading. We use that in many essays but …. Do we use it for IELTS essays? The answer is no. We don’t need it. Let me explain why. Firstly, the examiner is not looking for interesting ideas. Interest is not assessed in your IELTS essay so if your introduction is interesting or boring it makes no difference. Secondly, another reason that you don’t need the hook and that is you don’t have much time. You have a total of forty minutes and in those forty minutes you need to analyze the statement plan your essay and the at the end of your essay when you finish you need to check it. So really you only have about 35 minutes to write that essay there is not enough time to worry about having a hook that the examiner doesn’t want anyway so forget the hook.

2. Introduction Background Statements

The next thing is the background statement. What is the background statement? The background statement basically is this statement paraphrased. So I’ll just put here paraphrase the statement. IELTS give you a statement you need to paraphrase it which means you need to write it again with the same meaning but use your own language. I know that many students think they can just copy that but that will not help you for your essay. If you copy those words, they are not yours and the examiner it will not take them. So please don’t copy the sentence, just paraphrase it.

3. Introduction Thesis Statements

Next is the thesis statement. The thesis statement is your answer. So how much do you agree? You need to answer that and it is an introduction to your ideas. So we’ve got two parts to the introduction. We’ve got paraphrasing the statement and giving our answer, introducing our ideas. Just those two parts and in this lesson I’m gonna show you how to write them.

4. Introduction Practice

Let’s start with the background statement. So we need to paraphrase this sentence here. Now they start with the best way, we need to paraphrase that. Well the word way, is a solution, it’s a method. So solution or method, you could use both words. I’m going to use method and the best, another way to say that I would use the most effective method. So let’s write that down. And the next one to improve health we need to paraphrase that a little bit. Health we cannot change but we couldn’t we could paraphrase the word improve. So “the most effective method in developing and improving health”. Let’s just see what I’ve done here. Firstly I’ve added an extra word I’ve added this to show IELTS that I can paraphrase and I understand the meaning. I’ve added this word because I still like it I still think it’s a very good word to use for this sentence but they say improve, I say improving. This is also paraphrasing. I’m using the same word but a different form of the word. So I’ve taken the word and I’ve changed it a little bit. This is very good for IELTS so it means you don’t have to change the word completely,  you can just change the form of the word. So “the most effective method in developing and improving health”. Now we need the next bit. They say is “to do”, I will say “is considered to be”. So I’ve changed this part for considered to be and now we’ve got regular exercise. Exercise I want to keep. I don’t want to use sport because sport and exercise are not really the same thing. Sport is a game and often involves a team. It involves equipment. Exercise is something you can do on your own, it’s not a game. It’s just some movements. So I want to keep the word exercise but that means I want to change the word regular. I could say daily, it’s not exactly the same but it’s more or less the same. I could say frequent, that’s quite similar but for this essay I’m gonna say daily. “is considered to be daily exercise”. Now I have finished my background statement. So this sentence and this sentence has the same meaning but I’ve used different words I’ve altered it and this is my background statement to start my IELTS essay.

Let’s have a look now at writing the thesis statement. this is probably a little bit more difficult. So how do we start the thesis statement? Well our thesis statement, do you remember? It’s our answer and the question is “to what extent do you agree” so this question is asking for my opinion. Now the examiner is looking for your answer so I want to show the examiner my answer and I want to help him or her find it easily. To do that we can say “in my opinion”. Now when we start  the thesis statement with that, for that question, it means that the examiner can see that and find the answer. That’s great. That is a good, organized, logical academic essay for IELTS. So in my opinion. Now, do you agree or disagree?  Well I want to agree. I really think exercise is the most important way to gaining health. I really believe that maybe there are other ways. There are more things we can do but I think exercise is very important so I’m going to agree. So in my opinion I agree that exercise is the key to health. So that is nice and clear. But do I want to stop here? My thesis statement is also a chance for me to introduce my ideas. Now am I going to write an essay that is only about exercise?. Well to be honest I don’t want to write more than 250 words only about exercise. It’s very useful to have some more relevant but different ideas so I’m going to add a little bit more to this essay and I’m going to say however I also believe sorry let me write that believe that diet is important. So by doing this I have introduced a new solution to health and that is diet. I’m not saying it’s the key. It’s not the most effective but it is important. So I agree exercise is the key but I also think but that diet (that means what we eat) is important. Now you can see that I have written two sentences for my thesis statement. It is possible to have two sentences or you could have one and you could link these together in a better way. That’s up to you.

Right well let’s have a look at the whole introduction together and here is the finished introduction. The background and thesis statement together. The most effective method to developing and improving health is considered to be daily exercise. In my opinion I agree that exercise is the key to health however I also believe that diet is important.

Now let me give you some tips so that you can practice writing your  introduction at home. The background statement: this should have the same meaning as the statement given IELTS. Do not copy the IELTS statement. You need to paraphrase it, to use different language with the same meaning. So for example IELTS said the best way and we say the most effective method. You don’t need to change the words fully for example IELTS say improve and I have written improving. You can keep the word and change the form of the word for thesis statement that is your answer and an introduction to your ideas. It is an agree disagree essay that means an opinion essay and I have put in my opinion so that the examiner can find it quickly and easily. That is the key to a good academic essay: logical, organized easy to read. My answer is clear I agree to exercise is the key. You can see another paraphrase the most effective way the key. Lots of paraphrasing and I have also added another solution so that I can have different main points. So I’ve added about diet. Now my thesis statement has two sentences that’s fine but if you want to connect it to make one long complex sentence. You can change this part and connect them together. So that’s your background and our thesis statement. How many words does your introduction need to be? How long should the introduction be? Well this is about 35 words and that’s fine. Usually your introduction for IELTS will be between 35 and 50 words. I don’t really recommend that you write more on 50 words 50-55. Don’t go further because you don’t have a lot of time and you must arrive quickly to the body paragraphs and you need time to write the body paragraphs to develop the idea to support the ideas so don’t spend too long on the introduction.

Now if you found this lesson useful please press like and share it with your friends. That would be wonderful. Now I hope you will practice  writing the introduction at home make sure that you practice the background statement it’s the easiest part all the whole IELTS essay just paraphrase the statement. You can practice. If you don’t have many IELTS essay titles please visit my blog I have more than 100 for you to practice my blog is www.ieltsliz.com. Also the thesis statement, this is more difficult to write because you need your answer ready and you need your ideas ready. So you need to look at the essay title and plan your answer and practice giving your answer clearly in that way. Well that’s all for this lesson. Goodluck. Keep practicing and I’ll see you again in another IELTS lesson.