Strategies for writing a good introduction in Writing Task 2

Writing an effective introduction for Writing Task 2 can be a tricky task. After analyzing the topic, test takers often have an idea of what they want to include in their essay: perhaps they have a particular point they want to argue about, or they think of examples they want to use. However, many test takers struggle to introduce their thoughts in a way that makes sense to the examiner.

Introductions are an important part of a Writing Task 2 essay which will let your examiner know what to expect from your paper. Introductions also create the initial impression in terms of the quality of your writing. A clear, well-organized and relevant introduction will most certainly create a positive first impression on the examiner. Because of this, we have put together a list of strategies that you can use to write an effective introduction for Writing Task 2:

Strategy 1: Take a minute or two to read and analyse the task.

In Writing Task 2, you’re expected to address all the parts of the prompt in a relevant way. Because your introduction is the first step towards achieving this goal, you need to introduce your answer to all the different parts of the question. Therefore, it is important that you take some time to read and analyse the task before you start writing, so that you know exactly what you’re being asked to write about.

Strategy 2: Begin with a general statement and then focus in on the details of the question.

Writing Task 2 questions usually begin with a general statement before focusing in on more specific points or questions about the topic. Using a similar model in your own introduction is a great way to start your essay, but make sure that your general statement is clearly related to your topic and is not too broad.

Strategy 3: Use your own words.

While it is perfectly acceptable for you to use the prompt as a guide for your introduction, make sure you do NOT copy material from the prompt. Copied material can show the examiner a limited range of language, which can affect your band score. Instead, change the order of the information, use synonyms, and explain more complex ideas in your own words.

Strategy 4: State your position.

In Writing Task 2, you’re required to develop a position while exploring the different parts of the prompt. It is then important that you clearly state your position in your introduction.

Strategy 5: Briefly explain how you plan to develop the essay.

Even though this strategy can be considered as optional, briefly explaining how you plan to develop the topic can help you better organize your writing. It is also a good way to let the examiner know what you’ll be covering in the essay.

Strategy 6: Revise your introduction once you’ve finished writing.

Don’t forget to re-read your introduction once you’ve finished writing your essay. It is common for test takers to begin their essays thinking about a specific argument, or a specific way to organize their writing, but change their minds as they develop the topic. So, after completing your Writing Task 2, make sure that your final draft still matches your introduction.

Now that we have gone over some important strategies for writing a good introduction for Writing Task 2, it’s time to look at a sample introduction. Start by reading and analysing the prompt, as mentioned in Strategy 1. Then, carefully read the sample introduction and notice the different strategies used, which have been highlighted for you.

Sample Writing Task 2 prompt

The threat of nuclear weapons maintains world peace. Nuclear power provides cheap and clean energy.

The benefits of nuclear technology far outweigh the disadvantages.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

Sample introduction

General Statement:

Nuclear technology has been around for many years. 

Details:

Whether this technology is used for weapons of mass destruction or as a source of energy, many are of the belief that the use of nuclear energy has more advantages than disadvantages.

Position:

In my opinion, nuclear technology can indeed be a very efficient energy source. However, nuclear weapons possess such enormous destructive power that any benefits that this technology may offer to humankind are not enough to counter its potential devastating effects.

Plan:

This essay will address why the drawbacks of nuclear technology outweigh the benefits and will include relevant examples to support this position. 

Just as an effective introduction will let the examiner know what they can expect from your essay, a good conclusion will remind them of the main points presented and will summarise what you want your examiner to remember from your writing. Keep checking our blog for our next post on strategies for writing a good conclusion! 

 

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