List of good transitions for essays

But a strong paragraph is more than just a collection of loose sentences.

Those sentences need to be clearly connected so that readers can follow along, recognizing how one detail leads to the next. A paragraph with clearly connected sentences is said to be cohesive. The following paragraph is unified and cohesive. Notice how the italicized words and phrases called transitions guide us along, helping us see how one detail leads to the next.

Transitional words and phrases

Transitional words and phrases guide readers from one sentence to the next. Although they most often appear at the beginning of a sentence, they may also show up after the subject. Here are some of the most common transitional expressions in English, grouped according to the type of relationship shown by each.

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List of Transition Words

Transition words are vital to establishing flow and fluency in your paper. That flow and fluency allows your reader to seamlessly identify and connect to your ideas. Learning to use transitions is easy, but learning to use them fluidly is more difficult. Anyone can hold on to another person and move his feet. Doing it gracefully is another story. Second, smoking can discolor your teeth. Third, smoking is bad for the people around you. In the fourth place, smoking is very expensive. So numbering each of the points as we present them seems logical.

In addition, it can increase your self-esteem. Additionally, exercise can be a great way to meet new people. Plus, exercise can extend your life and make you feel younger. However, a big part of writing is finding the right balance. You may have a favorite transition word, but try to show some restraint in using it.

Switch it up from time to time. Avoid overusing transitions that essentially all mean the same thing. Transitions are meant to guide your reader through your essay from idea to idea and section to section. Your reader will know.

Common Transitions to Use in Cause and Effect Essay | Edusson Blog

In fact, it's a good idea to assume not only that your readers need all the information that you have and need to know how you arrived at the point you're at, but also that they are not quite as quick as you are. You might be able to leap from one side of the stream to the other; believe that your readers need some stepping stones and be sure to place them in readily accessible and visible spots.

There are four basic mechanical considerations in providing transitions between ideas: using transitional expressions, repeating key words and phrases, using pronoun reference, and using parallel form. For additional information on conjunctions, click HERE. However, the question whether one can begin a sentence with a small conjunction often arises. Isn't the conjunction at the beginning of the sentence a sign that the sentence should have been connected to the prior sentence?


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Well, sometimes, yes. But often the initial conjunction calls attention to the sentence in an effective way, and that's just what you want.

Effective Transitions in Research Manuscripts

Over-used, beginning a sentence with a conjunction can be distracting, but the device can add a refreshing dash to a sentence and speed the narrative flow of your text. Restrictions against beginning a sentence with and or but are based on shaky grammatical foundations; some of the most influential writers in the language have been happily ignoring such restrictions for centuries.

Here is a chart of the transitional devices also called conjunctive adverbs or adverbial conjunctions accompanied with a simplified definition of function note that some devices appear with more than one definition :. A word of caution: Do not interlard your text with transitional expressions merely because you know these devices connect ideas. They must appear, naturally, where they belong, or they'll stick like a fishbone in your reader's craw.

What this handout is about

For that same reason, there is no point in trying to memorize this vast list. On the other hand, if you can read your entire essay and discover none of these transitional devices, then you must wonder what, if anything, is holding your ideas together. Practice by inserting a tentative however, nevertheless, consequently. Reread the essay later to see if these words provide the glue you needed at those points. Repetition of Key Words and Phrases The ability to connect ideas by means of repetition of key words and phrases sometimes meets a natural resistance based on the fear of being repetitive.

We've been trained to loathe redundancy. Now we must learn that catching a word or phrase that's important to a reader's comprehension of a piece and replaying that word or phrase creates a musical motif in that reader's head. Unless it is overworked and obtrusive, repetition lends itself to a sense of coherence or at least to the illusion of coherence.


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