Writing Introductions Activity (Personal Response Essay)


NOTE: This is an individual activity. Do not work with another person to complete this.

An introduction for a university level essay does not need to be long.  In fact, a strong introduction can be a minimum of three lines only: an introductory sentence, topic sentence, and thesis.  In the activity below, practice writing the first two lines of the introduction.

INTRODUCTORY sentence:  this sentence should state the general idea/purpose behind the essay.  You should demonstrate to your instructor that you understand the idea/theory behind the writing (more generally, this sentence should convince your reader that the essay is going to be about an idea worth reading).

This essay is about leadership, so a strong introductory sentence would state a general idea/theory/purpose about leadership.

Answer the following question:  Why is leadership important?






Your answer will be the introductory sentence of the introduction in your essay.

TOPIC sentence: this sentence should give a general introduction of what you will specifically be writing about (your actual topic, not the more general idea/theory behind it). Remember, this should be a very general introduction of the topic—keep it to one sentence, and don’t get into much detail (the background paragraph is where you will share more detail).

This essay is about the book True North, which explains Bill George’s theory of “authentic leadership”. Think about the following questions: Why should the reader learn about authentic leadership?  What are the benefits of authentic leadership that you have learned so far? Why is authentic leadership unique and how does it connect with the idea of leadership that you wrote above?

Write a topic sentence for “authentic leadership” here:




THESIS statement:  the thesis statement is the most important sentence in your essay because it highlights what your essay will be about.  This sentence takes time and careful thought.  After you have read the assigned chapter from True North, as well as the course pack information, consider what your thesis will be.  You do not need to write it here.

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