1 Arashiramar

Smooth Transitions For Essays Paragraphs

To improve your writing you need to make sure that your ideas, both in sentences and paragraphs, stick together or have coherence and that the gap between ideas is bridged smoothly. One way to do this is by using transitions - words or phrases or techniques that help bring two ideas together. Transitional words and phrases represent one way of gaining coherence. Certain words help continue an idea, indicate a shift of though or contrast, or sum up a conclusion. Check the following list of words to find those that will pull your sentences and paragraphs together.

For continuing a common line of reasoning:

consequently
clearly, then
furthermore
additionally
and
in addition
moreover
because
besides that
in the same way
following this further
also
pursuing this further
in the light of the... it is easy to see that

 

To change the line of reasoning (contrast):

however
on the other hand
but
yet
nevertheless
on the contrary

 

For opening a paragraph initially or for general use:

admittedly
assuredly
certainly
granted
no doubt
nobody denies
obviously
of course
to be sure
true
undoubtedly
unquestionably
generally speaking
in general
at this level
in this situation

 

For the final points of a paragraph or essay:

finally
lastly

 

Transitional chains, to use in separating sections of a paragraph which is arranged chronologically:

first... second... third...
generally... furthermore... finally
in the first place... also... lastly
in the first place... pursuing this further... finally
to be sure... additionally... lastly
in the first place... just in the same way... finally
basically... similarly... as well

 

To signal conclusion:

therefore
this
hence
in final analysis
in conclusion
in final consideration
indeed

 

To restate a point within a paragraph in another way or in a more exacting way:

in other words
point in fact
specifically

 

Sequence or time

after
afterwards
as soon as
at first
at last
before
before long
finally
first... second... third
in the first place
in the meantime
later
meanwhile
next
soon
then

 

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These pages are from various handouts and excersises that I've collected from school over the years - I did not write them myself. If anyone ever finds the original teachers who wrote these (probably at some point in the 70s or early 80s), please let me know so I can credit them!If you wish to copy, print, link to or use these pages in any way, you do not need to ask me for permission.

Contributors:Ryan Weber, Karl Stolley.
Summary:

A discussion of transition strategies and specific transitional devices.

Writing Transitions

Good transitions can connect paragraphs and turn disconnected writing into a unified whole. Instead of treating paragraphs as separate ideas, transitions can help readers understand how paragraphs work together, reference one another, and build to a larger point. The key to producing good transitions is highlighting connections between corresponding paragraphs. By referencing in one paragraph the relevant material from previous paragraphs, writers can develop important points for their readers.

It is a good idea to continue one paragraph where another leaves off. (Instances where this is especially challenging may suggest that the paragraphs don't belong together at all.) Picking up key phrases from the previous paragraph and highlighting them in the next can create an obvious progression for readers. Many times, it only takes a few words to draw these connections. Instead of writing transitions that could connect any paragraph to any other paragraph, write a transition that could only connect one specific paragraph to another specific paragraph.

Example: Overall, Management Systems International has logged increased sales in every sector, leading to a significant rise in third-quarter profits.

Another important thing to note is that the corporation had expanded its international influence.

Revision: Overall, Management Systems International has logged increased sales in every sector, leading to a significant rise in third-quarter profits.

These impressive profits are largely due to the corporation's expanded international influence.

Example: Fearing for the loss of Danish lands, Christian IV signed the Treaty of Lubeck, effectively ending the Danish phase of the 30 Years War.

But then something else significant happened. The Swedish intervention began.

Revision: Fearing for the loss of more Danish lands, Christian IV signed the Treaty of Lubeck, effectively ending the Danish phase of the 30 Years War.

Shortly after Danish forces withdrew, the Swedish intervention began.

Example: Amy Tan became a famous author after her novel, The Joy Luck Club, skyrocketed up the bestseller list.

There are other things to note about Tan as well. Amy Tan also participates in the satirical garage band the Rock Bottom Remainders with Stephen King and Dave Barry.

Revision: Amy Tan became a famous author after her novel, The Joy Luck Club, skyrocketed up the bestseller list.

Though her fiction is well known, her work with the satirical garage band the Rock Bottom Remainders receives far less publicity.

Contributors:Ryan Weber, Karl Stolley.
Summary:

A discussion of transition strategies and specific transitional devices.

Transitional Devices

Transitional devices are like bridges between parts of your paper. They are cues that help the reader to interpret ideas a paper develops. Transitional devices are words or phrases that help carry a thought from one sentence to another, from one idea to another, or from one paragraph to another. And finally, transitional devices link sentences and paragraphs together smoothly so that there are no abrupt jumps or breaks between ideas.

There are several types of transitional devices, and each category leads readers to make certain connections or assumptions. Some lead readers forward and imply the building of an idea or thought, while others make readers compare ideas or draw conclusions from the preceding thoughts.

Here is a list of some common transitional devices that can be used to cue readers in a given way.

To Add:

and, again, and then, besides, equally important, finally, further, furthermore, nor, too, next, lastly, what's more, moreover, in addition, first (second, etc.)

To Compare:

whereas, but, yet, on the other hand, however, nevertheless, on the contrary, by comparison, where, compared to, up against, balanced against, vis a vis, but, although, conversely, meanwhile, after all, in contrast, although this may be true

To Prove:

because, for, since, for the same reason, obviously, evidently, furthermore, moreover, besides, indeed, in fact, in addition, in any case, that is

To Show Exception:

yet, still, however, nevertheless, in spite of, despite, of course, once in a while, sometimes

To Show Time:

immediately, thereafter, soon, after a few hours, finally, then, later, previously, formerly, first (second, etc.), next, and then

To Repeat:

in brief, as I have said, as I have noted, as has been noted

To Emphasize:

definitely, extremely, obviously, in fact, indeed, in any case, absolutely, positively, naturally, surprisingly, always, forever, perennially, eternally, never, emphatically, unquestionably, without a doubt, certainly, undeniably, without reservation

To Show Sequence:

first, second, third, and so forth. A, B, C, and so forth. next, then, following this, at this time, now, at this point, after, afterward, subsequently, finally, consequently, previously, before this, simultaneously, concurrently, thus, therefore, hence, next, and then, soon

To Give an Example:

for example, for instance, in this case, in another case, on this occasion, in this situation, take the case of, to demonstrate, to illustrate, as an illustration, to illustrate

To Summarize or Conclude:

in brief, on the whole, summing up, to conclude, in conclusion, as I have shown, as I have said, hence, therefore, accordingly, thus, as a result, consequently

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