What types of methods can be used in writing a scientific research paper introduction? I have read articles on a particular topic (COVID-19), and they are peer-reviewed scientific journals. My professor says my introduction should be 3-4 pages. I was thinking if there was a technique because I would reason that the an introduction in an English/Literature based class would be different from a scientific one because I am presenting someone else's data, and constructing topic sentences rest of the paper. The audience of the paper is my professor, and the intent is that we research information about our topic and present it as back up for our thesis. For example just simplifying my thesis I am writing about why Vaccine research takes so long on the contrary to what mainstream media says. For sources I have sources highlighting the structure of SARS, 1 Clinical Trial, and some with different, and specific vaccine approaches being used for SARS-CoV-2. I have never done an introduction for scientific research paper that was 3-4 pages. An approach I had in mind was to go over the sources, and what they had in this order:

  1. Background to Problem
  2. Structure of Virus
  3. How Structure of Virus Impacts Research
  4. Research done on both SARS-CoV-1(2003), and SARS-CoV-2(2019)
  5. Modified Thesis Paragraph

2 Answers 2


Comprehensive background.

If you are certain that it is 3-4 pages of background, not 3-4 paragraph (double check!), you could use the background to review the amazing history of vaccine development. That would be a tidy 3-4 page review, starting with the earliest vaccines and then moving on to advances in vaccine development over the years, with each technologic advance presented in the context of a given disease and vaccine. You will conclude your background in the present, noting the most recent vaccines developed and how they were developed.

A review of this sort could be a book! Your background should prioritize the issues which will appear again in your main section about COVID-19, and when they appear again you can move more quickly because you have already covered the issue in your background.

I would expect that a paper dedicating 3-4 pages to background would have at least double that amount of information about the main subject. Given that you have been tasked with a page number for background you should check on page numbers required for subsequent sections of the paper. Maybe your prof wants a mini-review; there are plenty of scholarly papers which preface (or follow) their main topic with a review several pages long.

  • No its not 3-4 paragraphs hahaha. I am doing this at a college level paper, its max length is 15 pages. Oct 26, 2020 at 15:13

In general set the context, importance, key issues, related items of importance.

I would expect that an introduction more than one page, two pages max, is starting to get too long and you are doing a brain dump in the prologue instead of putting the info in the body of the paper.

Your example seems to be putting things that belong in the paper in the intro. You could mention some as examples but not describe them there.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.