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Helpful Hints on Writing Introduction on Compare and Contrast Essay

In comparison/contrast, essay the similarities and the differences between items are explored. Comparison and contrast are a widespread structure not only in most academic fields, e.g. when writing a thesis or dissertation but also when researching for term papers, homework assignments and even doing some freelancing.

An introductory paragraph has two parts: general statements and the thesis statement.

General statements:

  • introduce the general topic (should be expressed in one sentence).
  • capture the reader’s interest.

The thesis statement

  • states the specific topic.
  • lists subtopics ( if you think they are necessary)
  • indicates the pattern of organisation (if you think it will make your TS more precise)
  • is normally the last sentence in the introductory paragraph.

This structure is called the “Funnel Introduction” because it starts with wider statements and then narrows them down. To attract the reader’s interest the introduction can include some interesting or dramatic facts, surprising statistics or historical background.

The thesis statement is the most important sentence -it states the specific topic. It also indicates the pattern of organisation that the paper will follow, for example:

There are several differences between a nurse practitioner and a physician’s assistant.

Before writing the thesis statement, it is necessary to organise your comparison/contrast essay in a point-by-point form in the so-called logical division pattern. Let us suppose that you want to compare two jobs. First, make a list of factors that are important to you: salary, opportunities for advancement, commuting distance from home and, team environment, sports facilities, and so on. Each factor, or point of comparison, is like a subtopic in a logical division essay.

For example Thesis Statement: One way to decide between two job offers is to compare them on important points: salary, benefits, opportunities for advancement and commuting distance from home.

Alternatively, you can organise your paper in such a way that all the similarities are discussed together and then all the differences. It is up to you to decide which comes first.

For example Thesis Statement: One way to decide between two job offers is to compare them on important points of similarities and differences.

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