Is It Right To Start An Essay With A Question?

Some may think it is inappropriate to start an essay with a question. Others think this is a way to get readers hooked on your topic. In some cases, you thesis statement may actually be a question that introduces the topic to your reading audience. Your instructor may give guidelines stating whether or not you should use a question to start an essay. Many students may not think about this aspect since an essay is often used to answer a question or provide a solution.

Catching the Attention of the Audience

Many feel starting an essay with a question is a great way to get the attention of the audience. It encourages them to keep reading to learn more about the answer. The question may relate to a situation many people can understand. Other times a question may ask about something you may not think about too often. This can be a good way to help set up the rest of the content that has yet to follow. Just keep in mind how you ask the question which is important.

You Can When the Question Invokes More Thought Instead of a Simple Answer

When you ask a question try to avoid it being answered with a simple yes or no. If you ask a question that can be answer easily then readers may not want to finish your essay. You should consider asking the question in a way that would invoke curiosity. You can ask a question that is familiar to your audience but think about how to put a twist on it. Some questions can be a form of opinion that would challenge viewpoints of others.

When It Depends on the Type of Paper You Are Writing

In some cases it may not be necessary to start your essay with a question. Or, it may not be considered appropriated depending on the type of essay. You can usually get an idea on whether it is acceptable based on guidelines given for the assignment. Sometimes you may start an essay by asking yourself a question versus directing it to the audience. A descriptive or persuasive essay may be appropriate for a asking a question at the beginning. When in doubt you can review ideas with your instructor or colleagues. Be creative with your question and be sure it is something you can answer with accuracy.

What we help with

The academic writing guides you can find on this website are created to assist high school and college students write better:

  • High school essays
  • Research papers
  • Capstone projects
  • Term papers
  • PowerPoint presentations
  • Article critiques
  • Dissertations

What our readers think

  • essay writing helpJosh (TX): I have been looking for a resource to help me write my essay and I found it!
  • research paper helpMaria (Sweden): I was totally stuck with my research project till I bumped into this blog. Thank you!
  • term paper helpAlex (DC): You guys have saved my literature term paper. You rock!
  • thesis helpJessica (NJ): Thank you for giving me free thesis statement topic ideas. I was about to fail my paper.


Academic writing is hard but we are here to help!

It may sound ridiculous but we have all received bad grades both in high school and college. We have all skipped classes, forgot to read the required articles or chapters, tried to cheat our tutors submitting free essays that we found online. We have all been there and done that. This resource, however, was created for those who got burned and do not want to repeat the same mistakes twice. Got educated, learn how to write and edit your written assignments, and graduate with flying colors.

Contact us

To ask a question, report a problem or send a writing related inquiry, send an email to help [at] forensicinschool dot com. We would love to hear from you!