Topic sentences are used to increase the readability and accessibility of a piece of writing. A topic sentence is the first sentence of any paragraph that contains keywords or other hints that indicate which part of the thesis statement is going to be discussed, or provides an introduction to a paragraph.
Steps for Writing
- Think of the main point you want to introduce in the paragraph, and restate it briefly and clearly.
- Think of the way to make the topic sentence interesting for your readers instead of simply recording the concise idea of the paragraph. Usually, it is enough to play the “So what?” game to understand how the information can be interesting for your audience.
- Compose and write your topic sentence down. Do not disclose or retell the information following it, or introduce solid facts; just give your readers an intriguing clue to what awaits them next.
Key Points to Consider
- Writing a topic sentence will be much easier if you have already decided on the key points of your paper and allocated them between paragraphs.
- A topic sentence must catch your readers’ attention and make them want to read further; hence, if you want to engage your readers, you should consider making it short but informative.
- A good topic sentence should be more specific than your thesis statement, but should not present the facts you want to use as a supporting base.
- A good topic sentence encapsulates the entire paragraph, not just its key point. It is a link between the two paragraphs, and a key to understanding the information in the new paragraph.
Do and Don’t
- Making a topic sentence a simple restatement of the key point of a paragraph.
- Writing vague topic sentences “about nothing.”
- Writing topic sentences starting with: “This paragraph will discuss…” or “In this paragraph, I will analyze the…”
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