Composing A Reflective Essay Introduction: Basic Tutorial


The purpose of a reflective essay is to provide an overview of a personal experience and explain its impact on you. As you are the main source of information in this case, the research step of the essay writing process will be easy to complete. You also shouldn’t have much trouble working on the body of the paper, which includes describing the experience and explaining the impact it had on your person.

However, writing an introduction for a reflective essay is a totally different matter. Where do you start your story? How can you get the readers interested in it? What is the main idea you want to express in your paper?

You need to answer all these questions, and then some more, in order to create an outstanding introduction that will catch the attention of your audience. The following guide can help you write this crucial paragraph:

  1. Go over the requirements carefully.
  2. You need to understand the requirement of the project, or you won’t have a chance to write a good paper. You will be given a prompt of some sort, and this is what you should focus on. If you aren’t sure that you understand what exactly is expected of you, talk to your teacher and ask for clarifications. It’s best to get a little embarrassed at the beginning than to write a reflective essay that is completely off the topic.

  3. Narrow the topic.
  4. The prompt you receive might be too wide for you to create a really good essay within the required word count. Therefore, you need to narrow down your topic to the point where you will be able to produce a truly meaningful paper. Focus your reflection on one specific area of the general topic and make sure your paper is very detailed and to the point.

  5. Develop a good thesis statement.
  6. A thesis statement is the core of your paper, so you need to think really hard on it. This sentence must express the main idea you are trying to present to your readers. However, you shouldn’t make it a factual statement. A reflective paper is a type of writing that is based on your personal view of the issue, not facts per se. Therefore, your readers need to have a chance to disagree with the opinion expressed in your thesis statement.

  7. Include a “hook”.
  8. There should be something in your introduction that catches the attention of the audience. It might be a quote, a controversial statement of some sort, or a shocking revelation. The purpose of this “hook” is to make your audience interested enough to continue reading.

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