Like a good book, this is how the master’s thesis should begin. In doing so, it is especially important to make the reader curious about what is to come. After all, he should enjoy dealing with the thesis. Thus, a successful introduction provides the perfect start to the thesis and an exciting introduction to the topic. It should pave the way for what will be worked on in the main part.
The introduction is a central component of the master thesis, which should clarify the overall concept (cf. Rettig 2017 S. 36). This article explains how to make the important first impression with a successful introduction.
Orientation for the reader in the master thesis
The size of the introduction is about ten percent of the complete master thesis (cf. Berger 2010, S. 73). Thus, it depends on the overall size of the paper how much space is available for the introduction. The student must now fill this space in such a way that the reader is curious about the Main body Will.
The actual master’s thesis only begins with the introduction. Thus, the introduction serves to give the reader a brief overview of what to expect in the main part of the master’s thesis. The introduction is also important for orientation throughout the thesis.
If you put introduction and Conclusion opposite, so these two elements of the master’s thesis should complement each other. The main body, on the other hand, is embedded in the middle and provides the reader with the conveyance of all relevant information. Therefore, it is important that the introduction and conclusion are in line with each other.
The first sentence of the master thesis
One can begin a master’s thesis by writing a Quote the introduction to the Topic gives (cf. Oertner/St. John/Thelen 2014: 31). The introduction to a master’s thesis on diversity management and individualization could, for example, read as follows: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Many fallen is bad." (Friedrich von Schiller) in order to point out the problem, which will be outlined afterwards.
In addition, it is possible to include with the introduction a Question to be described, which must be resolved in the main part. For example like this: "The knowledge of the therapy XY can mean the healing for some ill persons. So far, however, research on this is still in its infancy. This thesis shows …".
Also a provocative assertion is suitable to start a scientific work. Thus, the first sentence of a master’s thesis in sociology could read as follows: "The social benefits of the state are sufficient for subsistence, working is something for stupid people". Again and again it is claimed that Hartz IV recipients think like this."
A question statement is also a popular way to introduce the master’s thesis. This could be something like: "How are computer games used to help students learn??". Also the Humboldt University of Berlin gives tips on how to start an introduction.
Many ways lead to the goal
Overall, all ways of starting an introduction have one thing in common: they make you want to continue reading the text. This is then followed by the description of the most important theories in relation to the question, which one will deal with in the main part. Next, you introduce the method that will be used to answer the question.
Now you can present why you have chosen just this topic. However, personal motives are out of place here. This is followed by the formulation of the central question or the development of a thesis. In addition, one can list contradictory views that need to be refuted.
This is followed by the presentation of the method used to answer the research questions. This can be in detail a source interpretation , for example, in the case of historical topics, an Survey or be an experiment. A brief overview of what the reader can expect in each chapter concludes the introduction (cf Recommendations of the Georg-August-University Gottingen ).
A successful introduction ensures that the reader has an easy introduction to the topic. This ensures that readers who are not deeply involved in the topic can also understand the master’s thesis. Therefore, it is not conducive to presuppose detailed knowledge in order to comprehend the text.
For example, the path of the thesis must lead from the general to the specific. First, the author of the paper lays out the basics, then becomes more specific, and finally gets to the actual research question.
The best at the end
The introduction gives the reader an idea of how the content of the master’s thesis will be structured. But before the main part is written, the author of the thesis can hardly ensure how the research results will turn out. Therefore, it is advisable to write the introduction only after the main part has been written.
Another possibility, especially if the actual sequence from introduction to conclusion is to be followed, is to prepare a rough draft (cf. Bansch/Alewell 2013: 79). In this case, a revision as well as a Editing and proofreading the introduction before submission and the Printing and binding of the work indispensable.
Writing the introduction at the end also follows the recommendations of the guidebook literature. Theisen, for example, states, "This recommendation takes into account that (even) the writer does not know until the end what could really be accomplished; only such an introduction can be an invitation to the reader to read further" (Theisen 2013: 152).
So the goal of the introduction is to make the reader curious about what is to come. Already the first sentence should catch him and then prepare him for what will be covered in the main part. For a good start there are many possibilities. It is important to introduce the reader gently to the topic and not to assume too much prior knowledge.
Berger, Doris (2010): Scientific Work in Economics and Social Sciences, 1. edition, Wiesbaden.
Bansch, Axel/Alewell, Dorothea (2013): Scientific work, 11. Aufl., Munich.
Oertner, Monika/St. John, Ilona/Thelen, Gabriele (2014): Scientific Writing, 1. Aufl., Paderborn.
Rettig, Heike (2017): Key competencies: Writing scientific papers, 1. Aufl., Stuttgart.
Theisen, Manuel Rene (2013)Scientific work: Succeeding at Bachelor’s and Master’s Thesis, 16. Edition, Munich.