Table 1: Sub-components of introduction section
Section Description
Title page

Four components of a good title:

  • Use action words.
  • Reflect implementation and intervention themes.
  • Include specific target populations (adolescents, children under 5 years of age etc.)
  • Outlines what is being studied and why.
  • Summarizes expected outcomes, including the intended impact(s).
  • Provides a clear succinct rationale for why the project should be funded
Statement of the problem
  • Summarizes the purpose of the study.
  • It is a paragraph rather than a single statement.
  • Establishes the direction and captures the essence of the study.
  • Should be clear and concise.
  • Incorporates your general objectives and uses action words to succinctly outline the purpose of the study.
  • Reflects the research design of the study.
  • Leads logically to the research question(s).
Objectives and research question(s)
  • Should be of interest to the research community, researchers, policy-makers; decision-makers, funding agencies, health care providers, and the communities the research will ultimately affect.
  • Should be answerable.
  • Are shaped by the problem, and in turn should logically influence the research design.
  • Are clear and specific.
  • Are feasible.
  • Provide information required to evaluate interventions or progress.
  • Analyse possible causes for missed targets in order to find solutions.
  • Answering the question will result in important information or in developing relevant interventions.
Literature Review
  • Demonstrates familiarity with the topic.
  • Summarizes what is not known about the topic.
  • Establishes credibility.
  • Places proposed research in a broader context.
  • Demonstrates relevance by making connections to a body of knowledge.

The introduction provides critical information for funding and community support by:

  • Providing a foundation for the further development of the proposal (overview ofthe problem).
  • Facilitating access to background information on, and reports from, similar studies (systematic analysis and succinct review of literature).
  • Systematically stating why the proposed IR should be undertaken (rationale), what you hope to achieve (objectives) and expected results (outcomes).