IELTS Essays: How to write introductions

IELTS_essay_IntroAn ideal IELTS essay introduction meets 3 criteria. It is relevant to the topic, logical and concise.

What is a relevant introduction?

It is the one that follows the task to the letter. It covers ALL the task parts and doesn’t add unnecessary information. If the task asks one’s opinion, then the introduction gives it briefly. If the task asks reasons and solutions, then both are mentioned in the introduction.

An introduction that goes off-topic can be too general or too specific. E.g. in case the topic requires you to write about British retired people, you can’t write about European people or Russian people. If the topic asks you about teenagers, you can’t write about just schoolchildren.

What is a logical introduction?

It is the one that sets your position (don’t mistake your position with your opinion) that will be followed throughout the essay. You introduction needs to be logically connected with all the body paragraphs and the conclusion. E.g., if your essay is about reasons and solutions, and you mention only reasons in the introduction, then the essay loses its logical sequence a bit.

What is a concise introduction?

It is short (2-3 sentences) and understandable. The main reason why I recommend short introductions is that this way you will have more opportunities to develop your arguments in the essay body and to provide more relevant examples. When the introduction is too long, students often fail to extend their ideas in paragraphs, for which reason their essays look too general.

How to write an introduction.

Step 1

Paraphrase the first sentence or two sentences before the task itself as close as possible.
Step 2

Answer the questions in the task briefly.

It’s as simple as that!

Now let’s analyse some examples.


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?

Introduction 1

There is an ongoing debate in society about nuclear technology. In my opinion, it is dangerous and people in the world are not yet ready to use it. I believe that nuclear powers stations should be banned.

Introduction 2

Over the last century, the presence of nuclear arms has prevented many countries from starting a war. Furthermore, atomic technology has provided the world with inexpensive energy with zero carbon dioxide emission. Personally, I would argue that the merits of the technology outbalance the demerits.

Introduction 3
Over the last decades the humanity is using nuclear energy for military and peaceful purposes. It has both, benefits and drawbacks.
– – – – –

The first introduction is off-topic. The task is not to write the opinion about nuclear power stations, but to weigh advantages, disadvantages and decide if there are more benefits or drawbacks.

The second introduction is the closest to the task. It paraphrases the first part and answers the question.

The third introduction is close to the topic, but it gives no answer whether there are more advantages or disadvantages.

Now you can check your understanding by taking a quiz.

[WpProQuiz 47]