Write an Attention-Grabbing Opening Sentence for an Essay

  • M.Ed., Education Administration, University of Georgia
  • B.A., History, Armstrong State University

You can think of the first sentence of your essay as you would a fishing hook. It grabs your reader and allows you reel the person into your essay and your train of thought. The hook for your essay can be an interesting sentence that captures a person's attention, it can be thought-provoking, or even, entertaining.

The hook for your essay often appears in the first sentence . The opening paragraph includes a thesis sentence . Some popular hook choices can include using an interesting quote, a little-known fact, famous last words, or a statistic .

A quote hook is best used when you are composing an essay based on an author, story, or book. It helps establish your authority on the topic and by using someone else's quote, you can strengthen your thesis if the quote supports it.

The following is an example of a quote hook: "A man's errors are his portals of discovery." In the next sentence or two, give a reason for this quote or current example. As for the last sentence (the thesis) : Students grow more confident and self-sufficient when parents allow them to make mistakes and experience failure.

General statement

By setting the tone in the opening sentence with a uniquely written general statement of your thesis, the beauty is that you get right to the point. Most readers appreciate that approach.

For example, you can start with the following statement: Many studies show that the biological sleep pattern for teens shifts a few hours, which means teens naturally stay up later and feel alert later in the morning. The next sentence, set up the body of your essay, perhaps by introducing the concept that school days should be adjusted so that they are more in sync with the teenager's natural sleep or wake cycle. As for the last sentence (the thesis) :  If every school day started at ten o'clock, many students would find it easier to stay focused.

By listing a proven fact or entertaining an interesting statistic that might even sound implausible to the reader, you can excite a reader to want to know more. 

Like this hook: According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics , teens and young adults experience the highest rates of violent crime. Your next sentence can set up the argument that it's dangerous for teenagers to be on the streets at late hours. A fitting thesis statement might read: Parents are justified in implementing a strict curfew, regardless of a student's academic performance.

The Right Hook for Your Essay

The good news about finding a hook? You can find a quote, fact, or another type of hook after you determine your thesis. You can accomplish this with a simple online search about your topic after you've developed your essay .

You can nearly have the essay finished before you revisit the opening paragraph. Many writers polish up the first paragraph after the essay is completed.

Outlining the Steps for Writing Your Essay

Here's an example of the steps you can follow that help you outline your essay.

  • First paragraph: Establish the thesis
  • Body paragraphs: Supporting evidence
  • Last paragraph: Conclusion with a restatement of the thesis
  • Revisit the first paragraph: Find the best hook

Obviously, the first step is to determine your thesis. You need to research your topic and know what you plan to write about. Develop a starting statement. Leave this as your first paragraph for now.

The next paragraphs become the supporting evidence for your thesis. This is where you include the statistics, opinions of experts, and anecdotal information.

Compose a closing paragraph that is basically a reiteration of your thesis statement with new assertions or conclusive findings you find during with your research.

Lastly, go back to your introductory hook paragraph. Can you use a quote, shocking fact, or paint a picture of the thesis statement using an anecdote? This is how you sink your hooks into a reader.

The best part is if you are not loving what you come up with at first, then you can play around with the introduction. Find several facts or quotes that might work for you. Try out a few different starting sentences and determine which of your choices makes the most interesting beginning to your essay.

  • How To Write an Essay
  • How to Write a Great Essay for the TOEFL or TOEIC
  • The Ultimate Guide to the 5-Paragraph Essay
  • The Introductory Paragraph: Start Your Paper Off Right
  • How to Structure an Essay
  • How to Write a Solid Thesis Statement
  • Definition and Examples of Analysis in Composition
  • Tips on How to Write an Argumentative Essay
  • How to Start a Book Report
  • What an Essay Is and How to Write One
  • What Is Expository Writing?
  • How to Write a Good Thesis Statement
  • Writing a Lead or Lede to an Article
  • The Five Steps of Writing an Essay
  • An Introduction to Academic Writing
  • Writing a Descriptive Essay
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How to Write the Ultimate Essay Hook

How to Write the Ultimate Essay Hook

4-minute read

  • 6th May 2023

Never underestimate the power of an essay hook . This opening statement is meant to grab the reader’s attention and convince them to keep reading. But how do you write one that’ll pack a punch? In this article, we’ll break this down.

What Is an Essay Hook?

An essay hook is the first thing your audience will read. If it doesn’t hook them right off the bat, they might decide not to keep reading. It’s important that your opening statement is impactful while not being too wordy or presumptuous.

It’s also crucial that it clearly relates to your topic. You don’t want to mislead your readers into thinking your essay is about something it’s not. So, what kind of essay hook should you write? Here are seven ideas to choose from:

1.   Story

Everyone likes a good story. If an interesting story or anecdote relates to your essay topic, the hook is a great place to include it. For example:

The key to a good story hook is keeping it short and sweet. You’re not writing a novel in addition to an essay!

2.   Fact

Another great essay hook idea is to lay out a compelling fact or statistic. For example:

There are a few things to keep in mind when doing this. Make sure it’s relevant to your topic, accurate, and something your audience will care about. And, of course, be sure to cite your sources properly.

3.   Metaphor or Simile

If you want to get a little more creative with your essay hook, try using a metaphor or simile . A metaphor states that something is something else in a figurative sense, while a simile states that something is like something else.

Metaphors and similes are effective because they provide a visual for your readers, making them think about a concept in a different way. However, be careful not to make them too far-fetched or overly exaggerated.

4.   Question

Asking your audience a question is a great way to hook them. Not only does it make them think, but they’ll also want to keep reading because you will have sparked their curiosity. For example:

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Try to avoid using questions that start with something along the lines of “Have you ever wondered…?” Instead, try to think of a question they may never have wondered about. And be sure not to answer it right away, at least not fully. Use your essay to do that!

5.   Declaration

Making a bold statement or declaring a strong opinion can immediately catch people’s attention. For example:

Regardless of whether your reader agrees with you, they’ll probably want to keep reading to find out how you will back up your claim. Just make sure your declaration isn’t too controversial, or you might scare readers away!

6.   Common Misconception

Laying out a common misconception is another useful way to hook your reader. For example:

If your readers don’t know that a common belief is actually a misconception, they’ll likely be interested in learning more. And if they are already aware, it’s probably a topic they’re interested in, so they’ll want to read more.

7.   Description

You can put your descriptive powers into action with your essay hook. Creating interesting or compelling imagery places your reader into a scene, making the words come alive.

A description can be something beautiful and appealing or emotionally charged and provoking. Either way, descriptive writing is a powerful way to immerse your audience and keep them reading.

When writing an essay, don’t skimp on the essay hook! The opening statement has the potential to convince your audience to hear what you have to say or to let them walk away. We hope our ideas have given you some inspiration.

And once you finish writing your essay, make sure to send it to our editors. We’ll check it for grammar, spelling, word choice, references, and more. Try it out for free today with a 500-word sample !

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How to Write Great Essay Hooks (Tips + Examples)

How to Write Great Essay Hooks (Tips + Examples)

Table of contents

hook and the thesis statement

Yona Schnitzer

Blank screen. Cursor blinks. Clock ticks. Brain freezes.

You stressfully wonder, “How will I ever finish this essay?”

I’ve been there. 

Every time you write an essay, you want to catch your readers’ undivided attention from the very first word. The opening hook has to be *perfect* — no compromises. 

But, instead of reeling under pressure to come up with this elusively perfect essay hook at the eleventh hour, I’ve found a better way to write great essay hooks. 

In this guide, I’ll tell you what it takes to write the most compelling and attention-grabbing hooks. I’ll also break down six awesome types of essay hooks you can experiment with and share examples to inspire your next opening statement.

What is an Essay Hook?

An essay hook is the opening statement of an essay, written to capture readers' attention and nudge them to learn more about the topic. Also known as a lede or lead, this hook introduces readers to the topic/theme of the essay and piques their curiosity to continue reading. 

The hook creates the entire narrative for your essay. It tells readers what to expect from the rest of the essay and creates context around your main argument or thesis statement. 

6 Types of Essay Hooks You Can Experiment With

I’ve created this handy list of six different types of essay hooks. You can choose the one that best fits your essay’s context and create a stellar opening statement within minutes. 

1. Compelling fact or statistic

Lead with evidence and use a powerful fact or statistic as your essay hook. It’s one of the best ways to capture readers’ attention from the start and keep them intrigued throughout your essay. 

For example, if you’re writing about the importance of time management for freelancers, you have two options to create your opening sentence:

Generic : “Managing time as a freelancer is no easy feat.”

Impactful : “Nearly 70% of freelancers struggle to effectively divide and manage their time between multiple clients.” 

This data point, linked to the original research, sets a strong tone for your essay and draws people in to read more. It communicates  

Find a shocking statistic with AI

Finding relevant statistics for any topic is one of the hardest parts of the job. 

But you don't have to spend hours looking for these data points anymore. Wordtune can do this heavy lifting for you in three easy steps.

  • Open the Wordtune editor and add your essay title. 
  • Type in any content you've written, click on 'Add spice,' and select the 'Expand on' option.
  • Write 'statistics,' and Wordtune will add relevant data points to your content.

hook and the thesis statement

Get Wordtune for free > Get Wordtune for free >

2. Bold claim hook

When working on an argumentative essay , I always write with the mindset that nobody has the time to read my thoughts from start to finish. So, I have to get to the point quickly and make a solid argument worth people’s time. 

That's when opening with a bold claim works best. Condense all your views on the topic into a few thought-provoking lines that would make readers go, hmmm…

But remember, you can't open with a claim that people already know and accept as fact. It has to be something original and unique to make your readers tick, nudging them to dive deeper into your essay. 

For example, if you’re writing about water crisis, you have two options to open your essay: 

‍ "In some regions, there is not enough clean water for people to use."
‍ "Imagine a world where every drop of water is a battle, a precious commodity fought over by scores of people and animals alike. This can become a reality as early as 2050."

This bold claim presents a convincing argument about the global water crisis. It also emphasizes the urgency of this argument with a research-backed statistic.

Create a bold claim suggestion using AI

Can’t think of a strong opening sentence for your essay? Wordtune can translate your thoughts into a bold claim and create a compelling essay hook. 

Open your Wordtune editor and write a few lines related to your topic. These sentences should have a consensus among your audience. Then, choose the 'Counterargument' option from the list of suggestions. 

And you’ll have a bold claim for your essay with no effort at all!

hook and the thesis statement

3. Story/Anecdote hook

In all my years of writing, I’ve noticed how stories have a unique effect on people. A good story can resonate with a bigger audience, pique their curiosity, and deliver a more personal message. 

That's why you can cite a personal anecdote or talk about a publicly known story as a good hook for your essay. This hook allows you to play with words and work in more storytelling . 

One of my favorite writing tips applies here: enter the scene as late as possible and leave as early as possible. You have to keep it crisp instead of rambling on and on. 

Consider these two examples:

hook and the thesis statement

Either of these hooks could work fine if we were just writing a personal essay about a move to a new place. But if we’re specifically writing about the sky, the second example is better. It sticks to the point — the sky and the color of the sky — and doesn’t stray into irrelevant details. 

Create a compelling story with AI

I get it—not all of us are natural storytellers. But you can use AI to your advantage to create a concise and exciting story for your essay.  

Wordtune can help you write a short story from scratch or trim down your writing into a quick anecdote. Click on the expand or shorten button to edit your story any way you like. 

hook and the thesis statement

4. Question Hook

Humans have a tendency to immediately look for answers every time they come across fascinating questions. Using questions as essay hooks can reel people into your essay and feed their curiosity.

But questions are also fairly overused in essays. You don't want to use a generic question that makes people say, " Not another question ." 

Instead, think of questions that approach your topic from a fresh angle. This means honing in on what was especially interesting or surprising from your research—and maybe even brainstorming different questions to find the most fascinating one.

For example, if you’re writing about the psychology behind why we buy, you have two options to open your essay:

‍ “Do you know what factors compel us to buy certain things?”

Plugged in :

“Before buying anything, have you ever taken a moment to pause and think about possible reasons driving you to this purchase?”

The latter is more descriptive and creates a realistic scenario for readers to truly think about the topic of the essay.

5. Description hook

A descriptive hook works best when writing an explanatory or opinion-led essay. Descriptive hooks, as the name suggests, illustrate a topic in detail to create context for the essay. It's a good way to build awareness for and educate readers on lesser-known themes.

But a descriptive hook can easily become too plain or unexciting to read. To make it work, you have to write an engaging description using imagery, analogies, and other figures of speech. 

Remember to make your hook reader-friendly by avoiding passive voice, mainstream cliches, and lengthy sentences.

Consider this example:

hook and the thesis statement

Describing a sunset is too cliche, so cross that one off the list. Describing the sky as it is on a normal day wouldn't be shocking or unexpected, so scratch that one, too.

This example creates something unique by using analogies to describe the color of the sky and painting a beautiful picture. 

Write a gripping description with AI

Writing an exciting hook for a boring topic is more challenging than it looks. But Wordtune makes it a breeze with just two steps:

  • Open the Wordtune editor and write your essay topic.
  • Click on Explain or Emphasize and let it work its magic.

You can also change the tone of voice to make the text more in tune with your theme. 

hook and the thesis statement

6. Metaphor hook

One of my favorite essay hooks is to open with a persuasive metaphor to contextualize the topic. Metaphors can help you approach the topic from a completely different lens and wow your readers with interesting insight. 

Metaphors are also super versatile to make your writing more impactful. You can write a one-line metaphor or create a scenario comparing one thing to another and linking it to your topic. 

For example, if you’re writing about the experience of working at a startup, you can open your essay with these two options:

Short & sweet: "Joining a startup is like strapping into a rollercoaster: be ready to witness thrilling highs and sinking drops."

Long & descriptive : “Picture a small sailboat navigating the unpredictable winds and tides in a vast ocean. That’s a startup operating in a massive market. And with the right vision, this journey is filled with risks and rewards.” 

Create a convincing metaphor with AI

Writing good metaphors takes up a lot of creative brain power. You can always use Wordtune to find some extra inspiration if you're out of creative ideas. 

Type your opening line in the Wordtune editor and click on the 'Give an analogy' option. You can ask for as many suggestions as you want till you find the best one! 

hook and the thesis statement

What to Know About Your Essay (and Topic) Before You Write the Hook

Whether you’re writing a research paper on economics, an argumentative essay for your college composition class, or a personal essay sharing your thoughts on a topic, you need to nail down a few things before you settle on the first line for your essay.

‍ Let me break them down for you. 

1. Gain in-depth knowledge of your topic

hook and the thesis statement

Before you start writing your essay, you need to know your topic — not just in name, but in-depth. You don't have to become a subject matter expert overnight. But you do need to research the topic inside out 

Your research will help you:

  • Narrow your focus
  • Build an argument
  • Shape the narrative

Your research insights determine your essay’s structure and guide your choice of hook. 

After organizing your research in a neat outline, think to yourself: ‍Did you uncover a shocking fact? A compelling anecdote? An interesting quote? Any of those things could be your hook.

⚡ ‍ Take action: After finishing your research, review your notes and think through your essay. Mark or make a list of anything compelling enough to be a good lead.

2. Type of essay

hook and the thesis statement

In academic settings, there are generally three kinds of essays:

  • Argumentative: Making the case for a certain stance or route of action.
  • Expository: Explaining the who, what, when, where, why, and how of some phenomenon.
  • Narrative: Telling a true story as a way to explore different ideas.

‍ The type of essay you’re writing is key to choosing the best hook for your piece. 

A serious argumentative essay can start with a shocking statistic or a bold claim. And an expository essay can open with a descriptive hook while a metaphor hook would work best for a narrative essay.

⚡ ‍ Take action: Go through your list of potential hooks and cross out anything that doesn't fit the type of essay you're writing, whether it's persuasive , argumentative, or any other type.

3. Audience and tone

A best practice I often share with writers is to think of one reader and keep yourself in their shoes . This exercise can tell you so much about your audience — what kind of tone they like, what matters the most to them, what topics interest them, and so on. 

You can use these insights to create a compelling essay hook. Here’s how:

  • For an argumentative essay, you’re trying to convince someone who doesn’t agree with you that what you’re claiming is right or, at least, reasonable. You don’t want to turn them off with snarky or offensive language — but you do want to be authoritative. Your hook should match that tone and support your effort.
  • A narrative essay is likely to welcome more lyrical language, so starting with a colorful description or an anecdote might make more sense than, say, a bold claim or surprising fact. Whatever tone you choose for your narrative essay — comical or gentle or bold — should be used for your hook.
  • ‍ Expository essays can use all sorts of tones and be written to a variety of audiences, so think carefully about the tone that best fits your subject matter. An essay explaining how the human body shuts down when overdosed will likely require a different tone than one on the lives of circus masters in the late 1800s. 

⚡ ‍ Take action: Look at your list. Can you write these potential hooks in a tone that suits your subject and audience?

4. Length of essay

Are you writing a 10-page paper or a three-page reflection? Or is this your senior thesis, pushing over 100 pages?

‍ If you’re writing a shorter paper, you’ll want to keep your hook quick and snappy.  

Readers are expecting a quick read, and they don’t want to spend five minutes only going through the introduction. 

In contrast, you can approach a longer essay — like a senior thesis or a term paper — with a longer hook. Just make sure your hook relates to and supports the core point of your essay. You don’t want to waste space describing a scene that ultimately has nothing to do with the rest of your piece.

⚡ ‍ Take action: If you write out the items on your list, how long will they be? A sentence or paragraph? Perfect. Two to five paragraphs? Unless your essay is on the longer side, you may want to save that information for later in the piece.

‍ Now that you know the basic facts about what you’re writing, let’s look at some approaches you could use to catch those readers — and reel them in.

3 Approaches to Avoid When Writing Hooks 

I’ve read hundreds of essays — enough to recognize lazy writing from the first few words. It’s equally easy for readers to discard your essays as ‘poorly written’ just by reading the first line. 

So, I made a list of three types of essay hooks you want to avoid at all costs because these hooks can only disappoint your readers. 

1. Quotations

Quotes are probably the most overused type of hook in any form of writing. What's even worse is rinsing and repeating the same old quotes from Abraham Lincoln or Nelson Mandela in your essays. 

No matter how powerful a quote sounds, you shouldn’t slap it at the opening of your essay. It doesn’t give readers the excitement of reading something original and looks lazy.

For example, if you’re writing an essay on productivity, here’s what a good and bad lede looks like:

“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work” – Stephen King
Did you know that consuming 100 gms of sugar can slash your productivity levels by over 50% in a day?  

2. Definitions

The New Oxford American Dictionary defines a hook as "a thing designed to catch people's attention." 

If I opened my article with this dictionary definition of a hook, you’d have either dozed off or left this page long back to find something more interesting. 

Here's the thing: definitions put people to sleep. Readers don't want to see a formal, jargon-heavy definition of a topic as the very first line of an essay. Your opening statement should have some personality in it to show readers they're in for an exciting read. 

For example, if you’re writing about happy hormones, here’s what a good and bad lede looks like:

Happy hormones are known to boost the happiness levels in your body by creating positive feelings.
Ever wondered why cat videos make you instantly happy, and ice creams give you an extra dose of energy? It's all about how happy hormones control our brain chemistry.

3. “Imagine this”

Opening your essay with "Imagine this" used to be an interesting way to put your readers in a scenario and set the context for your essay. But now, it's far too cliched and just another lazy attempt to write an essay hook. 

You can create a relatable scenario for users without asking them to imagine or picture it. Use the descriptive hook format with an interesting choice of words to convey the same ideas more creatively.

For example, if you’re writing an essay on preparing for higher studies abroad, here’s what a good and bad lede looks like:

Imagine this: You’ve been applying to multiple universities, writing SOPs, and preparing for exams without guidance. Everything can go south any minute. 
College application season is officially here. But with each passing day, you’re under more and more stress to apply to your chosen colleges and tick all the items off your list.

‍Our Go-To Trick for Writing Catchy Hooks

This opening statement can make or break your entire essay. While I’ve broken down my best tips to create the best essay hooks, here’s a surefire way to write compelling openings :

Go through your notes and either outline your essay or write the whole thing. This way, you’ll know the central thread (or throughline) that runs throughout your piece. 

Once your essay or outline is complete, go back through and identify a particularly compelling fact, claim, or example that relates to that central thread.

‍Write up that fact, claim, or example as the hook for your essay using any of the methods we’ve covered. Then revise or write your essay so the hook leads smoothly into the rest of the piece and you don’t repeat that information elsewhere.

Does your hook spark curiosity in you? 

Did that fact surprise you in the research stage? 

Chances are, your readers will have the same reaction.

And that’s exactly what you want.

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How to write the best hook for your essay: the definitive guide.

“Details matter. It’s worth waiting to get it right.” – Steve Jobs, founder of Apple

When you’re writing an essay—whether it’s narrative, descriptive, expository, or persuasive—it’s important to pay attention to details and get it right. That starts with the opening sentence.

From the very beginning of your piece, you need to pull in your reader . You can do this with an essay hook.

  • This blog started with what is known as a quotation hook. Read on to learn more about different types of essay hooks, how to use them, the various sources for hooks, and how to make your opening “pop” to keep your readers engaged.

Composing a good essay might seem like a backwards process. First, write the essay or outline, then determine what hook makes the most sense to open your essay.

After that, write a few sentences for your introduction, and then close your first paragraph with a single thesis statement.

What is a hook?

The hook is the opening statement of your essay. This might be a single sentence or a few sentences that grab the reader’s attention from the very beginning.

  • Your essay, as a whole, should offer your best work in a well-written, engaging package.
  • The hook needs to set the scene early, hitting the reader with information that captures their interest right from the start.

When considering how to compose a hook, think about the content of the essay. The hook is a strong start to your essay, and the rest of the essay should follow suit with clean, clear, and creative writing.

Also, keep in mind who will be reading your essay.

  • There are many types of hooks, but which one is right for you and the content you are presenting?
  • Will the reader be open to something humorous? Will a famous quote provide a great lead for your essay, and will it create a clear connection?
  • If you start with a question, does the reader get the answer by the end of the essay?

The hook is short but significant. Here is an example of a hook for someone writing about homelessness among college students:

“Fourteen percent of four-year college students are homeless, and 48 percent are house insecure, according to the Hope Center for College Community and Justice. Hopefully, I’ll be one of them.”

What’s the difference between a hook and an introduction?

We’ve established that the essay hook is brief but powerful. The hook is not synonymous with the introduction, and should not replace it.

Where the hook is a succinct statement that draws in your reader, the introduction more formerly leads to your topic and purpose.

Creativity is an important component of your introduction, but the introduction more clearly states where you’ll take the reader through the rest of the essay.

How to Write a Hook: The Incredible Guide(Examples Included!)

Click above to watch a video on how to write a Hook.

This introduction adds to the hook previously mentioned:

“Rising tuition, poor financial aid packages, and too few affordable housing options have dramatically increased the percentage of homeless or house insecure college students in recent years. Students who work hard and want the opportunity to attend college are unable to afford shelter and food, often causing them to withdraw from school.”

By opening with the statistic hook and the follow-up statement, we know this student is homeless and plans to attend college. The hook grabs the reader’s attention.

In the next few sentences, the introduction provides the direction for the rest of the essay. There are several factors that lead to homelessness and home-insecurity among college students. These factors will be explored in the essay.

What’s the difference between a hook and a thesis statement?

A thesis statement, typically situated at the end of the essay’s first paragraph, clearly states and summarizes the argument you are presenting on your essay topic. This will drive the rest of your paper.

Given the example above, here is a thesis statement to follow the hook and introduction:

“This needs to stop now. Our government must provide more realistic options and resources for motivated students to improve their situations with a college education.”

This thesis provides the writer’s point of view on the topic, and further sheds light on the angle of the essay.

How can I brainstorm a great hook?

When you compose your essay outline or complete the essay, you’ll have a better feel for what type of hook works best for your opening.

There are plenty of ideas to choose from. Here are some of our favorites:

  • Anecdote — Tell the reader a short, memorable story. An anecdote should be a brief, true story about a person or event. This can be tricky to accomplish in a few short sentences, but if the story is succinct and impactful, it will create the perfect stage for the rest of your essay.
  • Quotation — Often, a quotation hook is from a famous source, for example, a president, social activist, philosopher, actor, etc. This blog opened with a quote from Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple. If you choose a quotation hook, be sure to state and attribute the quote accurately. Also, make sure that it relates to your topic and provides a smooth transition into your essay.
  • Question — If you choose to write a question hook, be sure that it does not lead to a yes or no answer. The question should set up the start of your essay, and should only be answered by the reader when they finish your essay. People are inquisitive, so if you provide a thought-provoking question at the start of your essay, it will catch their attention.
  • Statistics — The right statistics are impressive, effective, and staggering. Choose statistics that showcase your knowledge, back up your essay theme, or are relatable to your reader. Make sure you check your sources and attribute the statistics for accuracy.
  • Declarative statement — The declarative statement opens your essay with a strong statement that provides your view about a topic up front, and follows with your reasoning in the rest of the essay. While the reader does not need to agree with your statement, they should gain an understanding of why you feel the way you do by reading the essay.

What are sources for great hooks?

Now that you’ve determined what type of hook you want to use, it’s time to find the right information.

If you’re considering opening with an anecdote , first think about what incredible personal stories you have tucked away that might provide a compelling start to your essay.

  • An anecdote is a true story about a person or event that works best in a nonfiction or informal essay.
  • Other anecdotes might come from recent stories you’ve read in newspapers or magazines.
  • Think about what you’re trying to say with your short story. Are you trying to be humorous, prove a point, or set the tone? Is this a personal story, or someone’s else’s experience? How can you tell it quickly and effectively?

Oftentimes, a well-chosen quote will perfectly convey the point you want to get across at the very start. Use that quote to your advantage!

  • You might find a captivating quote in popular literature, historical documents, or current events. The Internet has made it extremely easy to search for quotes that apply to your essay topic.
  • Determine what key word you want to search. For example, consider quotes about evolution, and then sift through collections of famous quotes that introduce your essay in an amazing way. Always check for accuracy!

When using a question hook , think about a way to present your question in an intriguing and thought-provoking way.

  • As previously stated, choose a question that is not a “yes” or “no” answer, but makes the reader stop and think about the topic you are presenting.

There are great sources to search for statistics .

  • Current news stories , magazines, blogs, investigative journalism, websites for established organizations, etc., provide compelling and accurate statistics that create a strong start to your essay and support your thesis.
  • Our previous example on homeless and home-insecure college students came from a recent USA Today For most readers, the percentage of homeless students is likely shocking. The statistics also transition perfectly into the introduction and thesis of that essay.

A declarative statement is a great hook to use in a persuasive essay.

  • Carefully think about your position on your topic and how you want to present that in your essay. This is similar to a thesis statement because you are taking a strong position on your topic.
  • Your statement should be clear and succinct, and the rest of your essay should support that statement.

Get personalized advice!

How do i choose the right hook for my essay.

Choosing the best hook for your essay depends on the type of essay you are writing and the tone your essay will take.

There are dozens of different types of essays. We mentioned four of the most common essays at the start of the blog—narrative, descriptive, critical, and persuasive.

A narrative essay tells a true story in the first person. Because you are telling a story, an anecdote works well as your essay hook.

  • This opening gives you an opportunity to start the essay with a compelling, short personal story that leads into your full essay. A question hook also is a good choice for a narrative essay.
  • You can set up the scene of your essay with a question that makes the reader stop and think, for example, “How would you react if you met your mother for the first time on a six-hour plane ride when you were thirteen years old?”

A descriptive essay works to help the reader visualize something through descriptive writing. Depending on the scene you are trying to set, or the tone of your essay, almost any hook can work.

An anecdote can quickly develop a setting, and a well-developed question will provoke the reader to stop and think. A great quote can frame your essay through someone else’s famous words, and strong statistics will provide an interesting or shocking statement that you can build from in your essay.

A critical or expository essay is an informative look at your topic. This essay relies on facts and analytics, so a statistical hook is a perfect opening.

Look at the information available on your topic, and choose the most interesting, unusual, shocking, or effective statistic to set up your essay. Always check for accuracy!

Many hooks also work well for persuasive essays , which work to build up the reasons the reader should take your position on the topic presented.

  • The right anecdote , quote , question , statistic , or declarative statement can be used to set up your argument or point of view in the essay.
  • Remember the argument or point you are making, and be sure that the hook you choose to use clearly makes that point.

This should provide a smooth transition into the body of your persuasive essay.

What are tips for writing a great hook?

You want to develop a strong start for your essay. To write the best hook, keep these tips in mind:

  • Know the goal of your essay.
  • Know your audience.
  • Create an outline of your essay to make sure everything flows.
  • Think about stories that draw your attention and how the writer is able to do it.
  • Set the scene for your essay.
  • Set the tone of your essay.
  • Determine what structure you want to establish.
  • Check your facts, statistics, and quotes for accuracy.
  • Write your essay hook last.

How do I make a great hook for a college essay?

The top colleges and universities have become more selective than ever as acceptance rates continue to break records in recent years. What does this mean for you?

It means it’s important to stand ou t.

Your test scores, achievements, recommendations, and volunteer work are certainly important. But, where college admissions teams will truly see your personality and drive is in your college essay . And, even then, your essay has to make an impact from the start.

  • As admissions counselors sift through thousands of college essays , they often can tell from the first few sentences if they like what you have to offer or not.
  • So, it’s more important than ever to land the hook in your college essay.

This is your chance to illustrate to colleges what you’re all about, and to show off your writing skills. Colleges and universities want to know you and what motivates you in your college essay.

It’s important to avoid formality and focus on creativity.

  • While your hook and introduction should still provide a clear direction and theme for your essay, you should write them in your own unique way, emphasizing your writing style.

Save the formality for classroom writing, and spend your time developing a hook and introduction that makes your essay sing your unique song.

The hook for your college essay should be personal and creative to show the college of your choice what makes you stand out from the crowd.

What are examples of great hooks?

Developing a great hook for your essay is as unique and creative as the writer and essay topic . Here are some examples of great hooks:

Using an anecdote hook:

This is a short, personal story that introduces the writer’s experience in the Paralympics.

“At five years old, I lost my ability to walk after a freak accident attempting to ride my bike. You would think I’d never want to get on a bike again. But meeting the right person who helped me develop the right mindset led me to win a cycling event in the Paralympics.”

Using a quotation hook:

These are two very different quotes that could introduce an essay on evolution, depending on your thesis:

“Evolution is a theory, and it’s a theory that you can test. We’ve tested evolution in many ways. You can’t present good evidence that says evolution is not a fact.” Bill Nye the Science Guy “I’m all about evolution. I’m the first person to judge myself.” The Weeknd, singer/songwriter

Using a question hook:

Think about a question that can present your topic in a new light. If you’re writing an essay on the Civil War, for example, you could start with:

“What would our country look like today if the South won?”

That is certainly an interesting question to ponder, and it will grab the interest of your reader as they try to determine where the remainder of your essay will go.

Rhetorical questions also work well as an opening to an essay. Rhetorical questions can have obvious answers, or no clear answer. For example:

“Do you want to be successful?” (Rhetorical question with an obvious answer) “What is the meaning of life?” (Rhetorical question with no unanimous answer)

Both of these examples should pull the reader in by piquing their curiosity.

Using a statistic hook:

If you are writing an expository or persuasive essay on opioid use, many government sites or news articles provide excellent quotes:

“In 2017, more than 47,000 Americans died as a result of opioid use, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. “In Pennsylvania alone, 29,610 doses of Naloxone were administered by EMS from January 2018 to December 2019.”

Conclusion: How to write an awesome hook

Now that we’ve covered the types of essay hooks, how to write them, where to look for sources, and tips to make your hook shine, it’s time to get writing!

Remember, you have lots of options to choose from. Be sure to check up on different sources before deciding on an interesting hook.

If you have any questions, let us know!

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hook and the thesis statement

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How to Write a Hook: Start Off Your Essay Strong with This Guide

hook and the thesis statement

What is a Hook for an Essay: Importance and Purpose

Which section of your essay can make your readers dip their toes into your writing? Is it the body paragraphs where all the analysis is laid out? Or maybe the introduction, where you present your thesis statement and voice your perspective on the subject? Well, if you think it is the latter, then we must agree with your decision. However, let's get more specific; if we take the introductory paragraph to pieces, which piece gets the most recognition? You must have guessed from the article's title that we're talking about a hook. But first, let's define what is a hook for an essay before we walk you through the reasons why it deserves our pat on the back.

The hook is the initial sentence in a written work. Whether you're asking how to write a hook for a song, blog post, or term paper, know that the purpose of any effective hook is to seize the reader's attention. It can be one sentence long, often for shorter pieces, or composed of several lines - usually for larger pieces. Making the reader want to keep reading is what an essay hook accomplishes for your paper, just as an intriguing introduction does for any piece.

Our main emphasis in this guide is on creating a good hook for an essay. Nonetheless, these fundamental guidelines apply to nearly every format for communicating with your audience. Whether writing a personal statement, a speech, or a presentation, making a solid first impression is crucial to spur your readers into action.

How to Write a Hook for Different Kinds of Writing

Although it is a tough skill to master, understanding how to write a hook is crucial for academic writing success. By reviewing the most prevalent kinds of essay hooks, you can discover how to effectively captivate readers from the start and generate a hook that is ideal for your article. To do so, let's head over to the following sections prepared by our dissertation writers .

essay hooks

How to Write a Hook for a College Essay?

By mastering how to write a hook for a college essay, you have the opportunity to stand out from the hundreds of applicants with identical academic portfolios to yours in your college essay. It should shed light on who you are, represent your true nature, and show your individuality. But first, you need an attention-grabbing start if you want the admissions committee to read more of yours than theirs. For this, you'll require a strong hook.

Set the Scene

When wondering how to write a good hook for an essay, consider setting the scene. Open in the middle of a key moment, plunge in with vivid details and conversation to keep your essay flowing and attract the reader. Make the reader feel like they are seeing a moment from your life and have just tuned in.

Open with an Example

Starting with a specific example is also a great idea if you're explaining how you acquired a particular skill or unique accomplishment. Then, similar to how you established the scenario above, you may return to this point later and discuss its significance throughout the remaining sections.

Open with an Anecdote

Using an anecdotal hook doesn't necessarily mean that your essay should also be humorous. The joke should be short and well-aimed to achieve the best results. To assist the reader in visualizing the situation and understanding what you are up against when tackling a task or overcoming a challenge, you might also use a funny irony. And if this sounds too overwhelming to compose, buy an essay on our platform and let our expert writers convey your unmatched story!

How to Write a Hook for an Argumentative Essay?

If you write a strong hook, your instructor will be compelled to read your argument in the following paragraphs. So, put your creative thinking cap on while crafting the hook, and write in a way that entices readers to continue reading the essay.

Use Statistics

Statistics serve as a useful hook because they encourage research. When used in argumentative writing, statistics can introduce readers to previously undiscovered details and data. That can greatly increase their desire to read your article from start to finish. You can also consider this advice when unsure how to write a good hook for a research paper. Especially if you're conducting a quantitative study, a statistic hook can be a solid start.

Use a Common Misconception

Another answer to your 'how to write a hook for an argumentative essay' question is to use a common misconception. What could be a better way to construct an interesting hook, which should grab readers' attention, than to incorporate a widely held misconception? A widespread false belief is one that many people hold to be true. When you create a hook with a misinterpretation, you startle your readers and immediately capture their interest.

How to Write a Hook for a Persuasive Essay?

The finest hooks for a persuasive essay capture the reader's interest while leading them to almost unconsciously support your position even before they are aware of it. You can accomplish this by employing the following hook ideas for an essay:

Ask a Rhetorical Question

By posing a query at the outset of your essay, you may engage the reader's critical thinking and whet their appetite for the solution you won't provide until later. Try to formulate a question wide enough for them to not immediately know the answer and detailed enough to avoid becoming a generic hook.

Use an Emotional Appeal

This is a fantastic approach to arouse sympathy and draw the reader into your cause. By appealing to the reader's emotions, you may establish a bond that encourages them to read more and get invested in the subject you cover.

Using these strategies, you won't have to wonder how to write a hook for a persuasive essay anymore!

How to Write a Hook for a Literary Analysis Essay?

Finding strong essay openers might be particularly challenging when writing a literary analysis. Coming up with something very remarkable on your own while writing about someone else's work is no easy feat. But we have some expert solutions below:

Use Literary Quotes

Using a literary quote sounds like the best option when unsure how to write a hook for a literary analysis essay. Nonetheless, its use is not restricted to that and is mostly determined by the style and meaning of the quotes. Still, when employing literary quotes, it's crucial to show two things at once: first, how well you understand the textual information. And second, you know how to capture the reader's interest right away.

Employ Quotes from Famous People

This is another style of hook that is frequently employed in literary analysis. But if you wonder how to write a good essay hook without sounding boring, choose a historical person with notable accomplishments and keep your readers intrigued and inspired to read more.

How to Write a Hook for an Informative Essay?

In an informative essay, your ultimate goal is to not only educate your audience but also engage and keep them interested from the very beginning. For this, consider the following:

Start with a Fact or Definition

You might begin your essay with an interesting fact or by giving a definition related to your subject. The same standard applies here for most types mentioned above: it must be intriguing, surprising, and/or alarming.

Ask Questions that Relate to Your Topic

Another solution to 'How to write a hook for an informative essay?' is to introduce your essay with a relevant question. This hook lets you pique a reader's interest in your essay and urge them to keep reading as they ponder the answer.

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Expert-Approved Tips for Writing an Essay Hook

Are you still struggling with the ideal opening sentence for your essay? Check out some advice from our essay helper on how to write a hook sentence and make your opening stand out.

good essay hook

  • Keep your essay type in mind . Remember to keep your hook relevant. An effective hook for an argumentative or descriptive essay format will differ greatly. Therefore, the relevancy of the hook might be even more important than the content it conveys.
  • Decide on the purpose of your hook . When unsure how to write a hook for an essay, try asking the following questions: What result are you hoping to get from it? Would you like your readers to be curious? Or, even better, surprised? Perhaps even somewhat caught off guard? Determine the effect you wish to accomplish before selecting a hook.
  • Choose a hook at the end of the writing process. Even though it should be the first sentence of your paper, it doesn't mean you should write your hook first. Writing an essay is a long and creative process. So, if you can't think of an effective hook at the beginning, just keep writing according to your plan, and it will eventually come into your head. If you were lucky enough to concoct your hook immediately, double-check your writing to see if it still fits into the whole text and its style once you've finished writing.
  • Make it short . The shorter, the better – this rule works for essay hooks. Keeping your hook to a minimum size will ensure that readers will read it at the same moment they start looking at your essay. Even before thinking if they want or don't want to read it, their attention will be captured, and their curiosity will get the best of them. So, they will continue reading the entire text to discover as much as possible.

Now you know how to write a good hook and understand that a solid hook is the difference between someone delving further into your work or abandoning it immediately. With our hook examples for an essay, you can do more than just write a great paper. We do not doubt that you can even write a winning term paper example right away!

Try to become an even better writer with the help of our paper writing service . Give them the freedom to write superior hooks and full essays for you so you may learn from them!

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What Is A Good Hook For An Essay?

How to write a hook for an essay, what is a good hook for an argumentative essay, related articles.

How Long Should a College Essay Be: Simple Explanation

The Writing Center • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Thesis Statements

What this handout is about.

This handout describes what a thesis statement is, how thesis statements work in your writing, and how you can craft or refine one for your draft.

Introduction

Writing in college often takes the form of persuasion—convincing others that you have an interesting, logical point of view on the subject you are studying. Persuasion is a skill you practice regularly in your daily life. You persuade your roommate to clean up, your parents to let you borrow the car, your friend to vote for your favorite candidate or policy. In college, course assignments often ask you to make a persuasive case in writing. You are asked to convince your reader of your point of view. This form of persuasion, often called academic argument, follows a predictable pattern in writing. After a brief introduction of your topic, you state your point of view on the topic directly and often in one sentence. This sentence is the thesis statement, and it serves as a summary of the argument you’ll make in the rest of your paper.

What is a thesis statement?

A thesis statement:

  • tells the reader how you will interpret the significance of the subject matter under discussion.
  • is a road map for the paper; in other words, it tells the reader what to expect from the rest of the paper.
  • directly answers the question asked of you. A thesis is an interpretation of a question or subject, not the subject itself. The subject, or topic, of an essay might be World War II or Moby Dick; a thesis must then offer a way to understand the war or the novel.
  • makes a claim that others might dispute.
  • is usually a single sentence near the beginning of your paper (most often, at the end of the first paragraph) that presents your argument to the reader. The rest of the paper, the body of the essay, gathers and organizes evidence that will persuade the reader of the logic of your interpretation.

If your assignment asks you to take a position or develop a claim about a subject, you may need to convey that position or claim in a thesis statement near the beginning of your draft. The assignment may not explicitly state that you need a thesis statement because your instructor may assume you will include one. When in doubt, ask your instructor if the assignment requires a thesis statement. When an assignment asks you to analyze, to interpret, to compare and contrast, to demonstrate cause and effect, or to take a stand on an issue, it is likely that you are being asked to develop a thesis and to support it persuasively. (Check out our handout on understanding assignments for more information.)

How do I create a thesis?

A thesis is the result of a lengthy thinking process. Formulating a thesis is not the first thing you do after reading an essay assignment. Before you develop an argument on any topic, you have to collect and organize evidence, look for possible relationships between known facts (such as surprising contrasts or similarities), and think about the significance of these relationships. Once you do this thinking, you will probably have a “working thesis” that presents a basic or main idea and an argument that you think you can support with evidence. Both the argument and your thesis are likely to need adjustment along the way.

Writers use all kinds of techniques to stimulate their thinking and to help them clarify relationships or comprehend the broader significance of a topic and arrive at a thesis statement. For more ideas on how to get started, see our handout on brainstorming .

How do I know if my thesis is strong?

If there’s time, run it by your instructor or make an appointment at the Writing Center to get some feedback. Even if you do not have time to get advice elsewhere, you can do some thesis evaluation of your own. When reviewing your first draft and its working thesis, ask yourself the following :

  • Do I answer the question? Re-reading the question prompt after constructing a working thesis can help you fix an argument that misses the focus of the question. If the prompt isn’t phrased as a question, try to rephrase it. For example, “Discuss the effect of X on Y” can be rephrased as “What is the effect of X on Y?”
  • Have I taken a position that others might challenge or oppose? If your thesis simply states facts that no one would, or even could, disagree with, it’s possible that you are simply providing a summary, rather than making an argument.
  • Is my thesis statement specific enough? Thesis statements that are too vague often do not have a strong argument. If your thesis contains words like “good” or “successful,” see if you could be more specific: why is something “good”; what specifically makes something “successful”?
  • Does my thesis pass the “So what?” test? If a reader’s first response is likely to  be “So what?” then you need to clarify, to forge a relationship, or to connect to a larger issue.
  • Does my essay support my thesis specifically and without wandering? If your thesis and the body of your essay do not seem to go together, one of them has to change. It’s okay to change your working thesis to reflect things you have figured out in the course of writing your paper. Remember, always reassess and revise your writing as necessary.
  • Does my thesis pass the “how and why?” test? If a reader’s first response is “how?” or “why?” your thesis may be too open-ended and lack guidance for the reader. See what you can add to give the reader a better take on your position right from the beginning.

Suppose you are taking a course on contemporary communication, and the instructor hands out the following essay assignment: “Discuss the impact of social media on public awareness.” Looking back at your notes, you might start with this working thesis:

Social media impacts public awareness in both positive and negative ways.

You can use the questions above to help you revise this general statement into a stronger thesis.

  • Do I answer the question? You can analyze this if you rephrase “discuss the impact” as “what is the impact?” This way, you can see that you’ve answered the question only very generally with the vague “positive and negative ways.”
  • Have I taken a position that others might challenge or oppose? Not likely. Only people who maintain that social media has a solely positive or solely negative impact could disagree.
  • Is my thesis statement specific enough? No. What are the positive effects? What are the negative effects?
  • Does my thesis pass the “how and why?” test? No. Why are they positive? How are they positive? What are their causes? Why are they negative? How are they negative? What are their causes?
  • Does my thesis pass the “So what?” test? No. Why should anyone care about the positive and/or negative impact of social media?

After thinking about your answers to these questions, you decide to focus on the one impact you feel strongly about and have strong evidence for:

Because not every voice on social media is reliable, people have become much more critical consumers of information, and thus, more informed voters.

This version is a much stronger thesis! It answers the question, takes a specific position that others can challenge, and it gives a sense of why it matters.

Let’s try another. Suppose your literature professor hands out the following assignment in a class on the American novel: Write an analysis of some aspect of Mark Twain’s novel Huckleberry Finn. “This will be easy,” you think. “I loved Huckleberry Finn!” You grab a pad of paper and write:

Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn is a great American novel.

You begin to analyze your thesis:

  • Do I answer the question? No. The prompt asks you to analyze some aspect of the novel. Your working thesis is a statement of general appreciation for the entire novel.

Think about aspects of the novel that are important to its structure or meaning—for example, the role of storytelling, the contrasting scenes between the shore and the river, or the relationships between adults and children. Now you write:

In Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain develops a contrast between life on the river and life on the shore.
  • Do I answer the question? Yes!
  • Have I taken a position that others might challenge or oppose? Not really. This contrast is well-known and accepted.
  • Is my thesis statement specific enough? It’s getting there–you have highlighted an important aspect of the novel for investigation. However, it’s still not clear what your analysis will reveal.
  • Does my thesis pass the “how and why?” test? Not yet. Compare scenes from the book and see what you discover. Free write, make lists, jot down Huck’s actions and reactions and anything else that seems interesting.
  • Does my thesis pass the “So what?” test? What’s the point of this contrast? What does it signify?”

After examining the evidence and considering your own insights, you write:

Through its contrasting river and shore scenes, Twain’s Huckleberry Finn suggests that to find the true expression of American democratic ideals, one must leave “civilized” society and go back to nature.

This final thesis statement presents an interpretation of a literary work based on an analysis of its content. Of course, for the essay itself to be successful, you must now present evidence from the novel that will convince the reader of your interpretation.

Works consulted

We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.

Anson, Chris M., and Robert A. Schwegler. 2010. The Longman Handbook for Writers and Readers , 6th ed. New York: Longman.

Lunsford, Andrea A. 2015. The St. Martin’s Handbook , 8th ed. Boston: Bedford/St Martin’s.

Ramage, John D., John C. Bean, and June Johnson. 2018. The Allyn & Bacon Guide to Writing , 8th ed. New York: Pearson.

Ruszkiewicz, John J., Christy Friend, Daniel Seward, and Maxine Hairston. 2010. The Scott, Foresman Handbook for Writers , 9th ed. Boston: Pearson Education.

You may reproduce it for non-commercial use if you use the entire handout and attribute the source: The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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Guide to Writing Introductions and Conclusions

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First and last impressions are important in any part of life, especially in writing. This is why the introduction and conclusion of any paper – whether it be a simple essay or a long research paper – are essential. Introductions and conclusions are just as important as the body of your paper. The introduction is what makes the reader want to continue reading your paper. The conclusion is what makes your paper stick in the reader’s mind.

Introductions

Your introductory paragraph should include:

1) Hook:  Description, illustration, narration or dialogue that pulls the reader into your paper topic. This should be interesting and specific.

2) Transition: Sentence that connects the hook with the thesis.

3) Thesis: Sentence (or two) that summarizes the overall main point of the paper. The thesis should answer the prompt question.

The examples below show are several ways to write a good introduction or opening to your paper. One example shows you how to paraphrase in your introduction. This will help you understand the idea of writing sequences using a hook, transition, and thesis statement.

» Thesis Statement Opening

This is the traditional style of opening a paper. This is a “mini-summary” of your paper.

For example:

» Opening with a Story (Anecdote)

A good way of catching your reader’s attention is by sharing a story that sets up your paper. Sharing a story gives a paper a more personal feel and helps make your reader comfortable.

This example was borrowed from Jack Gannon’s The Week the World Heard Gallaudet (1989):

Astrid Goodstein, a Gallaudet faculty member, entered the beauty salon for her regular appointment, proudly wearing her DPN button. (“I was married to that button that week!” she later confided.) When Sandy, her regular hairdresser, saw the button, he spoke and gestured, “Never! Never! Never!” Offended, Astrid turned around and headed for the door but stopped short of leaving. She decided to keep her appointment, confessing later that at that moment, her sense of principles had lost out to her vanity. Later she realized that her hairdresser had thought she was pushing for a deaf U.S. President. Hook: a specific example or story that interests the reader and introduces the topic.

Transition: connects the hook to the thesis statement

Thesis: summarizes the overall claim of the paper

» Specific Detail Opening

Giving specific details about your subject appeals to your reader’s curiosity and helps establish a visual picture of what your paper is about.

» Open with a Quotation

Another method of writing an introduction is to open with a quotation. This method makes your introduction more interactive and more appealing to your reader.

» Open with an Interesting Statistic

Statistics that grab the reader help to make an effective introduction.

» Question Openings

Possibly the easiest opening is one that presents one or more questions to be answered in the paper. This is effective because questions are usually what the reader has in mind when he or she sees your topic.

Source : *Writing an Introduction for a More Formal Essay. (2012). Retrieved April 25, 2012, from http://flightline.highline.edu/wswyt/Writing91/handouts/hook_trans_thesis.htm

Conclusions

The conclusion to any paper is the final impression that can be made. It is the last opportunity to get your point across to the reader and leave the reader feeling as if they learned something. Leaving a paper “dangling” without a proper conclusion can seriously devalue what was said in the body itself. Here are a few effective ways to conclude or close your paper. » Summary Closing Many times conclusions are simple re-statements of the thesis. Many times these conclusions are much like their introductions (see Thesis Statement Opening).

» Close with a Logical Conclusion

This is a good closing for argumentative or opinion papers that present two or more sides of an issue. The conclusion drawn as a result of the research is presented here in the final paragraphs.

» Real or Rhetorical Question Closings

This method of concluding a paper is one step short of giving a logical conclusion. Rather than handing the conclusion over, you can leave the reader with a question that causes him or her to draw his own conclusions.

» Close with a Speculation or Opinion This is a good style for instances when the writer was unable to come up with an answer or a clear decision about whatever it was he or she was researching. For example:

» Close with a Recommendation

A good conclusion is when the writer suggests that the reader do something in the way of support for a cause or a plea for them to take action.

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Essay Writing Guide

Hook Example

Nova A.

Learn How to Write an Essay Hook, With Examples

16 min read

hook example

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Are your essays failing to keep readers interested? Struggling to maintain engagement throughout? 

If you don't grab attention from the start, readers might click away or never even begin. But how can we make sure that does not happen? 

An essay hook is what you need to meet this challenge. It is an attention grabber that hooks your reader’s interest. 

In this blog, we'll explain how to write an essay hook and explore several engaging examples of hooks in writing. Additionally, we'll look at different types of hooks and offer tips for writing engaging hook statements in your essays.

So, let’s start with the blog!

Arrow Down

  • 1. What is an Essay Hook?
  • 2. How to Write a Good Essay Hook?
  • 3. Different Types of Hook
  • 4. Hook Examples for Types of Essays
  • 5. Tips to Choose a Good Hook

What is an Essay Hook?

Hooks for essays, often found at the beginning of an essay introduction , serve as an opening sentence that immediately grabs the reader's attention. These hooks are a common feature in high school, college, and various academic assignments.

Keep in mind that hooks are not the same as introductions; they complement introductions and make them engaging. A good hook should be self-contained, avoiding the pitfalls of being dull or predictable.

Purpose of Hook in Writing

An effective hook serves two primary purposes. 

  • Firstly, it sets the tone for the essay by giving a sneak peek into what it's about.
  • Secondly, it creates an engaging start that makes the reader want to explore the essay further.

How to Write a Good Essay Hook?

Here are the points that you need to keep in mind to write a hook for your essay. 

Step#1 Know the Kind of Literary Work

First, it is important to have a clear vision in mind of the literary work you have selected for your paper. Here you need to describe what a certain essay type demands and what types of techniques you require to support your arguments in your essay. 

Step#2 Create an Outline

Always create an essay outline to see how the information can be organized better and which points need to be highlighted. Try to find an attention grabber that adds to the significance of that point. 

Step#3 Who are You Writing for? 

Know your target audience and choose a way in which you want to develop your work. Your hook statement should be according to it. If you are writing for students, write in simple language. If you are writing for professionals, take the specific language into account. 

Step#4 Know the Purpose of Writing Your Essay

Choose hooks that fit your paper. Know the type of essay you are writing and its purpose. You can go for funny hooks if you are writing a paper on a light topic. If you are writing a conference paper, then you should be more formal. 

Step#5 Revise and Refine

After writing your hook, revise it to ensure it's polished and impactful. Ask yourself if it effectively grabs attention and sets the stage for your essay. 

Different Types of Hook

Let’s take a look at different types of essay hooks and explain them briefly with examples. 

Type 1: Question Hook

A question hook is when you start something, like a story or an essay, by asking a question. It's a way to immediately get people thinking about what you're going to say next. It's like hooking their attention by making them wonder and want to find out the answer.

When posing a question, think about the interest of the reader and the things they would want to learn more about. Avoid making your question generalized or simple Yes or No questions. 

For example, asking a general question such as “Do you watch television?” won’t grab their attention and make them think it over. 

Always use rhetorical questions!

Question Hook Example

 Here are some hook question examples:

Type 2: Anecdotal Hook

An anecdotal hook is like starting your essay with a short, interesting story or personal experience. It catches someone's attention by sharing a real-life example or a funny incident before getting to the main topic.

This type of hook should be directly related to the central theme of the paper, showing its relevance and connection to the main idea.

Anecdotal hooks shouldn't contain cliched phrases or unrealistic scenarios that feel fake or unrelated to the essay topic.

Anecdote Hook Example

Let’s take a look at the anecdotal hook example: 

Type 3: Quotation Hook

A "quote hook" is a type of hook used in writing that involves opening an essay with a quotation from a notable person, a famous author, or a respected source. The purpose of a quote hook is to instantly capture the reader's attention and establish the relevance of the topic by providing an authoritative statement.

A well-chosen quote can add credibility to your writing, evoke emotion, or introduce a key theme that you intend to explore in your essay. It can also set the tone for the piece, whether it's persuasive, informative, or narrative.

Quotation Hook Example

For example, if you're writing an essay about the importance of perseverance, you might start with a quote like this:

Type 4: Statistical Facts Hooks 

Statistical facts hooks are when you start an essay with numbers or data to grab people's attention. The purpose of a statistical facts hook is to engage the reader's interest by presenting them with a surprising, statistic related to the essay's topic.

This type of hook is particularly effective when writing an informative essay or persuasive essay that relies on data and evidence to support the main argument. 

Statistical Hook Example

Take a look at the sample statistical hook below:

Type 5: Personal Story Hook 

Starting a piece of writing with a personal short story is a good idea when writing narrative essays or a college application essay .

It doesn’t have to be an experience that you faced firsthand; it could be something that happened with a friend or a relative.

Personal Story Hook Example 

Here is what a good personal story hook looks like: 

Type 6: Description Hook

This type of hook is like painting a picture with words. Instead of jumping right into the action or topic, it starts by vividly describing something related to the main idea. 

This draws readers in by appealing to their senses and creating a clear image in their minds. It sets the scene and gets them interested in what's to come. Descriptive hooks are most commonly used in narrative essays but can be used in any type of writing. 

Description Hook Essay Example

Here is an example of a description hook: 

Type 7: Metaphor/Simile Hook

A metaphor or simile hook is like comparing something in your essay to something else, using words like "as" or "like."It directly compares two things that are not related to each other. 

It's a way to paint a vivid picture in the reader's mind, making your point more interesting and memorable.

Metaphor/Simile Hook Example

Let’s take a look at the metaphor/simile hook example:

Type 8: Common Misconception Hook

This type of hook starts by talking about something that most people believe, but then reveals that it's actually not true. It's like saying something surprising to make your reader curious and interested in what you're going to say next.

Avoid adding information that's too complex or confusing, keeping it simple and straightforward to maintain clarity and impact.

Common Misconception Hook Example

Here is a sample common misconception hook: 

Hook Examples for Types of Essays

In academics, there are different types of essays according to their structure and purpose.  For instance, an argumentative essay is a serious essay written to persuade the reader of an argument. Whereas a narrative essay could be a light-hearted narration of an event. 

You can not use a funny question to start an argumentative essay. Similarly, you can not use a serious fact to start a funny narrative essay. 

The table shows hook examples for different types of essays:

Let’s explore in detail some interesting hook examples according to different types of essays.

Expository Essay Hook Example -

Argumentative essay hook example.

Here are two different hook examples for argumentative essay:

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Descriptive Essay Hook Example 

A hook example sentence for a descriptive essay is as follows: 

Persuasive Essay Hook Example

A hook example sentence for a persuasive essay is as follows:

Narrative Essay Hook Example 

A hook example for narration is as follows:

Compare and Contrast Essay Hook Example

Here is a sample hook: 

Process Essay Hook Example

A hook example sentence for a process analysis essay is as follows:

Cause and Effect Essay Hook Example

A hook example sentence for a cause and effect essay is as follows:

Analytical Essay Hook Example

A hook example sentence for an analytical essay is as follows:

Informative Essay Hook Example

Here is a hook example for an informative essay:

Research Paper Hook Example

Here is a hook example for research paper :

Hook Examples In Speeches

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Tips to Choose a Good Hook

Choosing a good hook involves engaging your audience, creating interest, and setting the stage for your content. Here is how to choose a good hook: 

  • Know Your Audience: Understand the interests and preferences of your target audience.
  • Relevance is Key: Ensure your hook directly relates to your content's topic.
  • Shock or Surprise: Use shocking facts, surprising statistics, or intriguing anecdotes.
  • Tell a Story: Engage emotionally with personal stories or narratives.
  • Pose a Question: Ask thought-provoking questions that make readers curious.
  • Quotations: Share powerful quotes from relevant authorities.
  • Visual Imagery: Use descriptive language to create vivid mental images.
  • Conciseness: Keep your hook brief and to the point.

To Sum it Up!

Now you know the different ways to start your essay or research paper. You are the one to decide which hook is better and more effective to use according to the type of paper. Don’t forget to take into account the preparatory steps and figure out what type of hook is best to use. You know that starting with a hook can make or break your academic essay. However, it is not always easy to come up with the perfect anecdote or statement for an opening line. 

Luckily, you can get help from MyPerfectWords.com . Our team of professional writers is ready to craft impeccable essays tailored to your needs, ensuring academic success without the stress.

Why struggle with complex assignments when you can ask us to " write my essay online " and experience the difference firsthand? 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a good hook sentence.

FAQ Icon

A good hook sentence is a sentence that grabs the reader’s attention or compels them to read your essay further. It is supposed to make your essay more interesting and engaging for them. 

What comes first, thesis or hook?

The hook of your essay is the first line of your introductory paragraph or can be more than one also. But the essay hook is written first. A thesis statement follows it. It is included as a mini-outline of the essay and tells the readers about the essay’s content. 

What is a hook statement?

The hook is the first sentence of your introduction, and it should be interesting. A great way to start a strong introduction is by writing an engaging, concise, and clear hook. This will spark curiosity in the reader, which leads them through all that you have written about.

How long is a hook in an essay?

The hook is 1-2 sentences of your essay are important because they help capture the reader's attention. They will continue reading if they are interested in what you have to say.

What is the difference between a hook vs lead-in transition to the thesis?

A hook captures the reader's attention at the beginning of an essay with an intriguing statement or question. A lead-in transition smoothly connects the hook to the thesis statement, guiding the reader from the attention-grabbing opening to the main argument of the essay.

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essay writing guide

hook and the thesis statement

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Writing a Paper: Thesis Statements

Basics of thesis statements.

The thesis statement is the brief articulation of your paper's central argument and purpose. You might hear it referred to as simply a "thesis." Every scholarly paper should have a thesis statement, and strong thesis statements are concise, specific, and arguable. Concise means the thesis is short: perhaps one or two sentences for a shorter paper. Specific means the thesis deals with a narrow and focused topic, appropriate to the paper's length. Arguable means that a scholar in your field could disagree (or perhaps already has!).

Strong thesis statements address specific intellectual questions, have clear positions, and use a structure that reflects the overall structure of the paper. Read on to learn more about constructing a strong thesis statement.

Being Specific

This thesis statement has no specific argument:

Needs Improvement: In this essay, I will examine two scholarly articles to find similarities and differences.

This statement is concise, but it is neither specific nor arguable—a reader might wonder, "Which scholarly articles? What is the topic of this paper? What field is the author writing in?" Additionally, the purpose of the paper—to "examine…to find similarities and differences" is not of a scholarly level. Identifying similarities and differences is a good first step, but strong academic argument goes further, analyzing what those similarities and differences might mean or imply.

Better: In this essay, I will argue that Bowler's (2003) autocratic management style, when coupled with Smith's (2007) theory of social cognition, can reduce the expenses associated with employee turnover.

The new revision here is still concise, as well as specific and arguable.  We can see that it is specific because the writer is mentioning (a) concrete ideas and (b) exact authors.  We can also gather the field (business) and the topic (management and employee turnover). The statement is arguable because the student goes beyond merely comparing; he or she draws conclusions from that comparison ("can reduce the expenses associated with employee turnover").

Making a Unique Argument

This thesis draft repeats the language of the writing prompt without making a unique argument:

Needs Improvement: The purpose of this essay is to monitor, assess, and evaluate an educational program for its strengths and weaknesses. Then, I will provide suggestions for improvement.

You can see here that the student has simply stated the paper's assignment, without articulating specifically how he or she will address it. The student can correct this error simply by phrasing the thesis statement as a specific answer to the assignment prompt.

Better: Through a series of student interviews, I found that Kennedy High School's antibullying program was ineffective. In order to address issues of conflict between students, I argue that Kennedy High School should embrace policies outlined by the California Department of Education (2010).

Words like "ineffective" and "argue" show here that the student has clearly thought through the assignment and analyzed the material; he or she is putting forth a specific and debatable position. The concrete information ("student interviews," "antibullying") further prepares the reader for the body of the paper and demonstrates how the student has addressed the assignment prompt without just restating that language.

Creating a Debate

This thesis statement includes only obvious fact or plot summary instead of argument:

Needs Improvement: Leadership is an important quality in nurse educators.

A good strategy to determine if your thesis statement is too broad (and therefore, not arguable) is to ask yourself, "Would a scholar in my field disagree with this point?" Here, we can see easily that no scholar is likely to argue that leadership is an unimportant quality in nurse educators.  The student needs to come up with a more arguable claim, and probably a narrower one; remember that a short paper needs a more focused topic than a dissertation.

Better: Roderick's (2009) theory of participatory leadership  is particularly appropriate to nurse educators working within the emergency medicine field, where students benefit most from collegial and kinesthetic learning.

Here, the student has identified a particular type of leadership ("participatory leadership"), narrowing the topic, and has made an arguable claim (this type of leadership is "appropriate" to a specific type of nurse educator). Conceivably, a scholar in the nursing field might disagree with this approach. The student's paper can now proceed, providing specific pieces of evidence to support the arguable central claim.

Choosing the Right Words

This thesis statement uses large or scholarly-sounding words that have no real substance:

Needs Improvement: Scholars should work to seize metacognitive outcomes by harnessing discipline-based networks to empower collaborative infrastructures.

There are many words in this sentence that may be buzzwords in the student's field or key terms taken from other texts, but together they do not communicate a clear, specific meaning. Sometimes students think scholarly writing means constructing complex sentences using special language, but actually it's usually a stronger choice to write clear, simple sentences. When in doubt, remember that your ideas should be complex, not your sentence structure.

Better: Ecologists should work to educate the U.S. public on conservation methods by making use of local and national green organizations to create a widespread communication plan.

Notice in the revision that the field is now clear (ecology), and the language has been made much more field-specific ("conservation methods," "green organizations"), so the reader is able to see concretely the ideas the student is communicating.

Leaving Room for Discussion

This thesis statement is not capable of development or advancement in the paper:

Needs Improvement: There are always alternatives to illegal drug use.

This sample thesis statement makes a claim, but it is not a claim that will sustain extended discussion. This claim is the type of claim that might be appropriate for the conclusion of a paper, but in the beginning of the paper, the student is left with nowhere to go. What further points can be made? If there are "always alternatives" to the problem the student is identifying, then why bother developing a paper around that claim? Ideally, a thesis statement should be complex enough to explore over the length of the entire paper.

Better: The most effective treatment plan for methamphetamine addiction may be a combination of pharmacological and cognitive therapy, as argued by Baker (2008), Smith (2009), and Xavier (2011).

In the revised thesis, you can see the student make a specific, debatable claim that has the potential to generate several pages' worth of discussion. When drafting a thesis statement, think about the questions your thesis statement will generate: What follow-up inquiries might a reader have? In the first example, there are almost no additional questions implied, but the revised example allows for a good deal more exploration.

Thesis Mad Libs

If you are having trouble getting started, try using the models below to generate a rough model of a thesis statement! These models are intended for drafting purposes only and should not appear in your final work.

  • In this essay, I argue ____, using ______ to assert _____.
  • While scholars have often argued ______, I argue______, because_______.
  • Through an analysis of ______, I argue ______, which is important because_______.

Words to Avoid and to Embrace

When drafting your thesis statement, avoid words like explore, investigate, learn, compile, summarize , and explain to describe the main purpose of your paper. These words imply a paper that summarizes or "reports," rather than synthesizing and analyzing.

Instead of the terms above, try words like argue, critique, question , and interrogate . These more analytical words may help you begin strongly, by articulating a specific, critical, scholarly position.

Read Kayla's blog post for tips on taking a stand in a well-crafted thesis statement.

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73 Essay Hook Examples

essay hook examples and definition, explained below

An essay hook is the first one or two sentences of your essay that are used to grab the reader’s attention and draw them into your discussion.

It is called a hook because it “grabs” the reader and doesn’t let them go! It should have something in there that makes the reader feel curious and intrigued, compelling them to continue reading.

Techniques for Good Essay Hooks

Here are a few techniques that you can use to write a good essay hook:

  • Use a Quotation : Sometimes, a relevant quotation from a well-known author or expert can help establish the context or theme of your essay. Next time you’re conducting research for an essay, keep an eye out for a really compelling quote that you could use as your hook for that essay.
  • Start with a Statement that is Surprising or Unusual: A surprising or unusually statement will draw a reader in, making them want to know more about that topic. It’s good if the statement contradicts common knowledge or reveals an insight about your topic that isn’t immediately obvious. These can be particularly good for argumentative essays where you’re putting forward a controversial or compelling argument as your thesis statement .
  • Tell a Brief Anecdote : A short, interesting story related to your topic can personaize the story, making it more than just a dry essay, and turning it into a compelling narrative that’s worth reading.
  • Use Statistics or Facts: Interesting, surprising, or shocking facts or statistics work similarly to surprising statements: they make us want to know more about a topic. Statistics and facts in your introductions are particularly useful for analytical, expository , and argumentative essays.
  • Start with a Question: Questions that make the reader think deeply about an issue, or pose a question that the reader themselves has considered, can be really effecitve. But remember, questions tend to be better for informal and personal essays, and are generally not allowed in formal argumentative essays. If you’re not sure if you’re allowed to use questions in your essays, check with your teacher first.

Below, I’ll present some examples of hooks that you could use as inspiration when writing your own essay hook.

Essay Hook Examples

These examples might help stimulate your thinking. However, keep in mind that your essay hook needs to be unique to your essay, so use these as inspiration but write your own essay hook that’s perfect for your own essay.

1. For an Essay About Yourself

An essay about yourself can be personal, use “I” statements, and include memories or thoughts that are deeply personal to you.

  • Question: “Have you ever met someone who could turn even the most mundane events into a thrilling adventure? Let me introduce myself.”
  • Anecdote: “The smell of freshly baked cookies always takes me back to the day when I accidentally started a baking business at the age of nine.”
  • Intriguing Statement: “I’ve always believed that you haven’t truly lived until you’ve read a book upside down, danced in the rain, or taught a parrot to say ‘I love pizza.'”
  • Quotation: “As Mark Twain once said, ‘The secret of getting ahead is getting started.’ That’s a philosophy I’ve embraced in every aspect of my life.”
  • Humorous Statement: “I’m a self-proclaimed ‘professional chocolate tester’ – a title that’s not only delicious but also requires extreme dedication.”
  • Start with your Mission Statement : “My life motto is simple but powerful: be the person who decided to go for it.
  • Fact or Statistic: “According to a study, people who speak more than one language tend to be better at multitasking . As a polyglot, I certainly live up to that statistic.”
  • Comparison or Metaphor: “If my life were a book, it would be a blend of an adventurous novel, a suspense thriller, and a pinch of romantic comedy.”
  • Personal Revelation: “Ever since I was a child, I’ve had an uncanny ability to communicate with animals. It’s an unusual skill, but one that has shaped my life in many ways.”
  • Narrative: “The day everything changed for me was an ordinary Tuesday. Little did I know, a single conversation would lead me to discover my true passion.”

2. For a Reflective Essay

A reflective essay often explores personal experiences, feelings, and thoughts. So, your hooks for reflective essays can usually be more personal, intriguing, and engaging than other types of essays. Here are some examples for inspiration:

  • Question: “Have you ever felt as though a single moment could change your entire life? This essay is going to explore that moment for me.”
  • Anecdote: “I was standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon, looking at the vast emptiness, and for the first time, I truly understood the word ‘perspective’.”
  • Bold Statement: “There is a part of me that is still trapped in that room, on that rainy afternoon, holding the letter that would change everything.”
  • Personal Revelation: “The first time I truly felt a sense of belonging wasn’t in a crowded room full of friends, but in the quiet solitude of a forest.”
  • Intriguing Statement: “In my life, silence has been a teacher more profound than any words could ever be.”
  • Quotation: “Einstein once said, ‘The only source of knowledge is experience.’ Now, looking back, I realize how profound that statement truly is.”
  • Comparison or Metaphor: “If my life is a tapestry, then that summer was the vibrant thread that changed the entire pattern.”
  • Narrative: “As the train pulled out of the station, I realized I wasn’t just leaving my hometown, I was leaving my old self behind.”
  • Philosophical Statement: “In the theater of life, we are both the actor and the audience, playing our part and watching ourselves simultaneously.”
  • Emotive Statement: “There is a sort of sweet sorrow in remembering, a joy tinged with a hint of sadness, like the last notes of a beautiful song.”

For an Argumentative Essay

Essay hooks for argumentative essays are often the hardest. This type of essay tends to require the most formal type of academic writing, meaning your hook shouldn’t use first person, and should be more based on fact and objectivity, often at the expense of creativity. Here are some examples.

  • Quotation: “Thomas Jefferson once said, ‘Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government.’ If Jefferson were alive today, he would likely feel that this meed for a well-informed citizenry is falling well short of where he would aspire.”
  • Provocative Statement: “Despite what romantic films may portray, love at first sight is merely a myth perpetuated by society. This essay will prosecute the argument that love at first sight is a myth.”
  • Statistical Fact: “According to the World Health Organization, depression is the leading psychological disability worldwide. Yet, mental health is still stigmatized and often overlooked. This essay will argue that depression should be seen as a health issue, and stigmatization of depression causes serious harm to society.”
  • Comparison: “Much like an unchecked infection, climate change, if left ignored, can spread far beyond what it is today, causing long-term economic and social problems that may even threaten the longevity of humanity itself.”
  • Contradiction : “While we live in an era of unprecedented technological advancements, millions around the world are still denied basic internet access.”
  • Bold Declaration: “Animal testing is not only ethically unacceptable, but it also undermines the progress of medical research.”
  • Challenging Belief: “Despite popular belief, the automation of jobs is not a threat but an opportunity for society to evolve.”
  • Quotation: “George Orwell wrote in ‘1984’, ‘Big Brother is Watching You.’ In our modern society, with the advancement of technology, this is becoming more of a reality than fiction.”
  • Intriguing Statement: “Despite countless diet fads and fitness trends, obesity rates continue to rise. This argumentative essay will argue that this is because medical practitioners’ approaches to health and weight loss are fundamentally flawed.”
  • Statistical Fact: “Research reveals that over 90% of the world’s plastic waste is not recycled. This alarming figure calls for a drastic change in social attitudes towards consumption and waste management.”
  • Challenging Assumption: “Society often assumes that progress and growth are intrinsically good, but this is not always the case in the realm of economic development.”
  • Contradiction: “Western society upholds the value of freedom, yet every day, members of society cede personal liberties in the name of convenience and security.”
  • Analogy: “Like an overplayed song, when a news story is repeated too often, it loses its impact. In the era of digital media, society is becoming desensitized to critical issues.”
  • Relevant Anecdote: “In a village in India, the arrival of a single computer transformed the lives of the residents. This small anecdote underscores the importance of digital inclusion in today’s world.”
  • Call to Rethink: “In a world where success is often equated with financial wealth, it is time for society to reconsidered what truly constitutes a successful life.”

For a Compare and Contrast Essay

A compare and contrast essay examines two issues, looking at both the similarities and differences between them. A good hook for a compare and contrast essay will immediately signal to the reader the subjects that are being compared and why they’re being compared. Here are sine ideas for hooks for a compare and contrast essay:

  • Quotation: “As Charles Dickens wrote in his novel ‘A Tale of Two Cities’, ‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times’. This could equally apply to the contrasting dynamics of urban and rural living.”
  • Provocative Statement: “Despite popular belief, cats and dogs have more in common than society tends to think.”
  • Comparison: “Comparing being an only child to growing up with siblings is like contrasting a solo performance with an orchestral symphony.”
  • Contradiction: “While many view classic literature and contemporary fiction as worlds apart, they are more akin to two sides of the same coin.”
  • Bold Declaration: “Android and iPhone may compete in the same market, but their philosophies could not be more different.”
  • Statistical Fact: “Statistics show that children who grow up reading books tend to perform better academically than those who do not. But, the jury is out on how reading traditional books compares to reading e-books on screens.”
  • Quotation: “As Robert Louis Stevenson once wrote, ‘Sooner or later, we all sit down to a banquet of consequences.’ This statement can be used to frame a comparison between short-term and long-term thinking.”
  • Provocative Statement: “Democracy and dictatorship are often seen as polar opposites, but are they are not as different as they seem.”
  • Comparison: “Climate change and plastic pollution are two major environmental issues, yet they demand different approaches and solutions.”
  • Contradiction: “While traditional classrooms and online learning are seen as separate modes of education, they can often blend into a cohesive learning experience.”
  • Bold Declaration: “Though both based on merit, the structures of capitalism and socialism lead to vastly different societal outcomes.”
  • Imagery: “The painting styles of Van Gogh and Monet can be contrasted as a stormy sea versus a tranquil pond.”
  • Historical Reference: “The philosophies of the Cold War-era – capitalism and communism – provide a lens to contrast economic systems.”
  • Literary Comparison: “The dystopian societies portrayed in George Orwell’s ‘1984’ and Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ serve as contrasting visions of the future.”
  • Philosophical Question: “Individualism and collectivism shape societies in distinct ways, but neither one can truly exist without the other.”

See Here for my Guide on Writing a Compare and Contrast Essay

For a Psychology Essay

Writing an engaging hook for a psychology essay involves sparking the reader’s interest in the human mind, behavior, or the specific psychology topic you’re discussing. Here are some stimulating hooks for a psychology essay:

  • Rhetorical Question: “How much control do we truly have over our own actions?”
  • Quotation: “Sigmund Freud once said, ‘Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and will come forth later in uglier ways.’ This essay will explore whether this is universally true.”
  • Provocative Statement: “Contrary to popular belief, ‘venting out’ anger might actually be fueling the fire of fury.”
  • Comparison: “Just as an iceberg reveals only a fraction of its bulk above water, conscious minds may only be a small piece of who humans truly are.”
  • Contradiction: “While it may seem counterintuitive, studies show that individuals who are more intelligent are also more likely to suffer from mental health issues.”
  • Bold Declaration: “Despite advances in technology, understanding the human brain remains one of the final frontiers in science.”
  • Statistical Fact: “According to a study by the American Psychological Association, nearly one in five adults in the U.S. lives with a mental illness. Yet, mental health continues to be a topic shrouded in stigma.”

For a Sociology Essay

Writing an engaging hook for a sociology essay involves sparking the reader’s interest in social behaviors, cultural phenomena, or the specific sociology topic you’re discussing. Here are ideas for hooks for a sociology essay:

  • Quotation: “As Karl Marx once noted, ‘Social progress can be measured exactly by the social position of the fair sex.’ Sadly, society has not made much progress in gender equality.”
  • Provocative Statement: “Social media, initially created to connect people, is ironically leading society into an era of unprecedented isolation.”
  • Comparison: “Comparing society to a theater, where each individual plays a role, it is possible to start to see patterns and scripts embedded in daily interactions.”
  • Contradiction: “While people often believe that technology is bringing society closer together, evidence suggests that it’s actually driving a wedge between people, creating ‘digital divides’.”
  • Bold Declaration: “Human societies are constructed on deeply ingrained systems of inequality, often invisible to those benefiting from them.”
  • Statistical Fact: “A recent study found that women still earn only 81 cents for every dollar earned by men. This stark wage gap raises questions about equality in the workforce.”

For a College Application Essay

A college essay is a personal statement where you can showcase who you are beyond your grades and resume. It’s your chance to tell your unique story. Here are ten potential hooks for a college essay:

  • Anecdote: “At the age of seven, with a wooden spoon as my baton, I confidently conducted an orchestra of pots and pans in my grandmother’s kitchen.”
  • Provocative Statement: “I believe that life is like a game of chess. The king might be the most important piece, but it’s the pawns that can change the entire course of the game.”
  • Personal Revelation: “It wasn’t until I was lost in a foreign city, armed with nothing but a map in a language I didn’t understand, that I truly discovered my love for adventure.”
  • Intriguing Question: “Have you ever wondered how it feels to be part of two completely different cultures, yet wholly belong to neither?”
  • Bold Declaration: “Breaking a bone can be a painful experience. Breaking stereotypes, however, is an entirely different kind of challenge.”
  • Unusual Fact: “I can recite the periodic table backwards while juggling three tennis balls. It’s a strange talent, but it’s a perfect metaphor for how I tackle challenges.”
  • Quotation: “As Albert Einstein once said, ‘Imagination is more important than knowledge.’ This quote has defined my approach to learning.”
  • Narrative: “It was a cold winter’s day when I first discovered the magic of turning a blank page into a world full of characters, stories, and ideas.”
  • Metaphor: “Like a caterpillar transforming into a butterfly, my high school years have been a period of profound metamorphosis.”
  • Humorous Statement: “Being the youngest of five siblings, I quickly learned that the best way to be heard was to become the family’s unofficial lawyer.”

Conclusion: The Qualities of a Good Essay Hook

As I wrap up this article, I want to share a few last tips on qualities that a good essay hook should have. Keep these tips in mind when writing your essay hook and using the above essay hook examples:

First, relevance . A good hook should be directly relevant to the topic or theme of your essay. The hook should provide a preview of what’s to come without giving too much away.

Second, Intrigue. A great hook should make the reader want to continue reading. It should create a question in the reader’s mind or present a fascinating idea that they want to know more about.

Third, uniqueness. An effective hook should be original and unique. It should stand out from the many other essays that the reader might be going through.

Fourth, clarity. Even though a hook should be captivating and original, it should also be clear and easy to understand. Avoid complex sentences and jargon that might confuse the reader.

Fifth, genre conventions. Too often, my students try to be so creative in their essay hooks that they forget genre conventions . The more formal an essay, the harder it is to write the hook. My general approach is to focus on statistics and facts, and avoid rhetorical questions , with more formal essay hooks.

Keep in mind that you should run your essay hook by your teacher by showing them your first draft before you submit your essay for grading. This will help you to make sure it follows genre conventions and is well-written.

Chris

Chris Drew (PhD)

Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]

  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ Social-Emotional Learning (Definition, Examples, Pros & Cons)
  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ What is Educational Psychology?
  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ What is IQ? (Intelligence Quotient)
  • Chris Drew (PhD) https://helpfulprofessor.com/author/chris-drew-phd/ 5 Top Tips for Succeeding at University

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IMAGES

  1. How to Write a Catchy Hook for an Essay: 5 Types of Essay Hooks (With

    hook and the thesis statement

  2. What is a hook

    hook and the thesis statement

  3. How To Write A Hook For An Essay + 9 Essay Hook Statements

    hook and the thesis statement

  4. How to Write a Hook for an Essay: Guide, Tips, and Examples

    hook and the thesis statement

  5. 20 Compelling Hook Examples for Essays

    hook and the thesis statement

  6. How To Make A Hook Statement

    hook and the thesis statement

VIDEO

  1. Argumentative essay writing

  2. Introductions, Hooks & Thesis Statement, Sajida Fakhri 7.2.2022

COMMENTS

  1. How to Write a Thesis Statement

    Step 1: Start with a question. You should come up with an initial thesis, sometimes called a working thesis, early in the writing process. As soon as you've decided on your essay topic, you need to work out what you want to say about it—a clear thesis will give your essay direction and structure.

  2. How to Write the Hook of an Essay

    Here's an example of the steps you can follow that help you outline your essay. First paragraph: Establish the thesis. Body paragraphs: Supporting evidence. Last paragraph: Conclusion with a restatement of the thesis. Revisit the first paragraph: Find the best hook. Obviously, the first step is to determine your thesis.

  3. How to Write the Ultimate Essay Hook

    And be sure not to answer it right away, at least not fully. Use your essay to do that! 5. Declaration. Making a bold statement or declaring a strong opinion can immediately catch people's attention. For example: Putting an end to school shootings is the most important issue facing the United States.

  4. How to Write Great Essay Hooks (Tips + Examples)

    Also known as a lede or lead, this hook introduces readers to the topic/theme of the essay and piques their curiosity to continue reading. The hook creates the entire narrative for your essay. It tells readers what to expect from the rest of the essay and creates context around your main argument or thesis statement. 6 Types of Essay Hooks You ...

  5. How to Write a Hook: The Definitive Guide

    Given the example above, here is a thesis statement to follow the hook and introduction: "This needs to stop now. Our government must provide more realistic options and resources for motivated students to improve their situations with a college education." This thesis provides the writer's point of view on the topic, and further sheds ...

  6. How to Write a Hook: 10 Ways to Capture Your Readers' Attention

    In an essay, the hook falls in the introduction paragraph. To review, the parts of an essay include: Introduction Paragraph(s): This includes your hook, the background information, and your thesis statement. Body Paragraphs: Each body paragraph starts with your topic sentence. Then you elaborate using detail sentences, and wrap up the paragraph ...

  7. How to Write a Hook for an Essay: Guide, Tips, and Examples

    Determine the effect you wish to accomplish before selecting a hook. Choose a hook at the end of the writing process. Even though it should be the first sentence of your paper, it doesn't mean you should write your hook first. Writing an essay is a long and creative process. So, if you can't think of an effective hook at the beginning, just ...

  8. How to Write a Hook

    Anecdotal Hook. When a writer uses a short story to relate to the topic and gain the reader's attention, they are using an anecdote. This story can be a short, personal story or one that is a figment of your imagination. Make sure that it relates to the main idea of the paper. Show the relevance that it has to the topic of the paper.

  9. Thesis Statements

    A thesis statement: tells the reader how you will interpret the significance of the subject matter under discussion. is a road map for the paper; in other words, it tells the reader what to expect from the rest of the paper. directly answers the question asked of you. A thesis is an interpretation of a question or subject, not the subject itself.

  10. Guide to Writing Introductions and Conclusions

    The thesis should answer the prompt question. The examples below show are several ways to write a good introduction or opening to your paper. One example shows you how to paraphrase in your introduction. This will help you understand the idea of writing sequences using a hook, transition, and thesis statement. » Thesis Statement Opening

  11. How to Write a Hook and Thesis Statement for Your Essay

    Creating a thesis statement requires narrowing down your topic, taking a stand, and making a claim. To start, consider the specific issue or question you want to address in your essay, as well as ...

  12. How to Write a Hook for an Essay

    The hook is the first statement in a piece of writing. It may be composed of one sentence (generally for shorter pieces) or multiple sentences (for longer ones), but the goal of any good hook is to firmly get the reader's attention. ... Hook vs lead-in transition to the thesis. As you can tell, writing a hook for an essay can be challenging ...

  13. How to Write a Great Essay Hook?

    The hook of your essay is the first line of your introductory paragraph or can be more than one also. But the essay hook is written first. A thesis statement follows it. It is included as a mini-outline of the essay and tells the readers about the essay's content.

  14. PDF Introductory Paragraphs

    1. Hook (be creative in capturing your audience's attention) 2. Background information (or statements that connect the hook to the thesis) 3. Thesis EXAMPLES OF DIFFERENT HOOKS Introduce the Controversy: Sometimes it is best to situate yourself within the conversation surrounding your topic early on. By starting your paper with the

  15. Academic Guides: Writing a Paper: Thesis Statements

    The thesis statement is the brief articulation of your paper's central argument and purpose. You might hear it referred to as simply a "thesis." Every scholarly paper should have a thesis statement, and strong thesis statements are concise, specific, and arguable. Concise means the thesis is short: perhaps one or two sentences for a shorter paper.

  16. 73 Essay Hook Examples (2024)

    These examples might help stimulate your thinking. However, keep in mind that your essay hook needs to be unique to your essay, so use these as inspiration but write your own essay hook that's perfect for your own essay. 1. For an Essay About Yourself. An essay about yourself can be personal, use "I" statements, and include memories or ...

  17. Mastering the Thesis Statement: Examples and Tips for Academic ...

    A thesis statement should appear in the introduction of the essay to layout the main topic and the author's stance on it. It should also appear in the conclusion of the essay, where the author can refer back to it. A thesis statement should be a short statement of only one or two sentences that delivers clear and concise information.

  18. Essay Introduction

    The bridge is the transition between the hook and the thesis statement. It can be written in different ways depending on what type of essay is being created. The bridge generally comes in two ...

  19. PDF Intro Paragraphs & Thesis Statements

    First, we must recognize academic writing as a Process. Strong essays cannot be written overnight! Be sure to schedule in time for: Pre-writing - brainstorm words or phrases, free write for 5 minutes, create a thought cluster, etc. Planning - create a thesis, assemble evidence, create an outline. Practice - draft, edit, & repeat!

  20. Strong Bridges Connect the Hook and Thesis Lesson

    Grammar and writing lesson for "Evaluating Bridges"