6 Secrets to Write a Hook for an Academic Essay


A hook is the first sentence or a couple of first sentences of an essay. It serves as the attention grabber that introduces the topic of the essay in general while boosting the curiosity of the reader so that he or she keeps reading. Therefore, a hook needs to be interesting and informative at the same time, playing a vital role in how good the paper is.

Here are some tips on how to start your essay to write a good hook and make your essay distinguishable.

Use a Quote

Starting an essay with a quote makes it both more pleasing to read as a piece of writing and captures the attention of the audience. Find a suitable citation that is relatable to the topic of your essay. It can be taken from a work of literature or a movie or belong to a famous person. The quote you use should either directly illustrate the issue you focus on in the essay or be abstract so that you further tie it to the central subject of the paper. In any case, putting a quote at the beginning of an academic essay is an effective way of capturing one’s attention.

Introduce an Interesting Fact

Find the most surprising, unexpected, or illustrative fact about the topic of your essay and put it in the first sentence of the introduction. Don’t include any general statements that are common knowledge because they won’t do the job. You can also add this after you’re done with researching information or writing the essay. In such a way, you’ll be able to highlight something truly interesting, which may be what you have personally found the most exciting about the chosen topic.

Refer to Statistics

If it’s applicable to the topic of your academic essay, include some statistics emphasizing the scope of the issue you address. While this tip is quite self-explanatory, there are some rules to stick to. Don’t forget to cite the figures properly and indicate the source of the statistics so that the information is credible and persuasive.

Also, try not to put raw numbers in the hook – add a brief explanation of how they should be interpreted afterward. It’s the first sentence of your essay, you don’t want to confuse the reader instead of intriguing. This also indicates the tone of your work, so putting well-structured piece of information at the very beginning of the paper is always a good idea.

Address a Myth, Stereotype, or a Misconception

Starting with a false belief is an effective way of capturing the readers’ attention. Especially, when the misconception is the one they consider to be true. By introducing it, you make the audience want to learn why a statement should not be viewed as trustworthy and what they should believe instead. Therefore, be sure to prove the myth, stereotype, or misconception wrong with facts further in the essay.

Create a Metaphor

Besides starting with pure facts, you can get creative and introduce a metaphor applicable to your topic. You can also come up with a line that would boost the reader’s imagination. To get inspired, try thinking of what the world would be like if the issue you’re writing about was eliminated. Then, introduce this fiction as the hook.

However, make sure that you write something that is not too abstract or ambiguous. Such a hook can make an opposite effect on the reader and discourage him or her from reading on your essay.

Ask a Rhetorical Question

Begin with addressing a question that does not actually require an answer but is thought-provoking. A hook with a question will encourage the reader to look for an answer in your essay. At the same time, stick to the academic style of writing and don’t get too personal and emotional when stating the question.

Since a hook is an important part of an academic essay, you need to come up with a good one. These listed tips can provide you with some ideas on how to write a good hook for your essay. In addition, you can go through StudyMoose to see some examples of how others start their essays. In any case, there are various ways of beginning an essay in an interesting way, and you’ll definitely find one.

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