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Transitional Words and Phrases Transitional words and phrases

Date of publication: 2017-08-30 20:49

afterward, at first, at the same time, first of all, in conclusion, in the first place, in time, to begin with, for now, for the time being, the next step, in turn, later on, later, meanwhile, next, soon, in the meantime, then, while, earlier, simultaneously, with this in mind

Transitional Words and Phrases

Example linking sentences:
His garden looked beautiful after many hours of work. By contrast , his neighbor's garden looked equally as beautful, though she practiced a low maintenance approach.


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.

Introductory Paragraphs

On the contrary, contrarily, notwithstanding, but, however, nevertheless, in spite of, in contrast, yet, on one hand, on the other hand, rather, or, nor, conversely, at the same time, while this may be true.

accordingly, as a result, consequently, for this reason, for this purpose, hence, otherwise, so then, subsequently, therefore, thus, thereupon, wherefore

APA Referencing - Short Quiz 6
Referencing a book
Referencing an e-book
APA Referencing - Short Quiz 7
Referencing a website
Reference a brochure
APA Referencing - Long Quiz Reference an article from a database
Reference a journal

The simplest transitions are coordinating conjunctions, also known as the FAN BOYS words: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so. These common words help us connect not only our words but our ideas. For example, when you use the word so, you are saying, here's something that we can conclude from what I just said. When you use or, you are saying, here's another possibility. The most commonly used coordinating conjunction, and, is also the weakest in terms of the meaning it conveys, indicating only that here's something else. Coordinating conjunction do act as transitions, but they are not enough to give an essay a strong sense of cohesion.

At the left, at the right, in the center, on the side, along the edge, on top, below, beneath, under, around, above, over, straight ahead, at the top, at the bottom, surrounding, opposite, at the rear, at the front, in front of, beside, behind, next to, nearby, in the distance, beyond, in the forefront, in the foreground, within sight, out of sight, across, under, nearer, adjacent, in the background.

Transitional Words in a Summary Worksheet
This transitional words worksheet directs the student to write a paragraph summary of the text using the transitional words given. Learning how to write a summary is an important skill. It is also important to use transition words in a summary. The transition words given are first, then, next, after that, and finally. These transition words show sequence and help connect the ideas in a summary.

What are compare and contrast transition words ? Before you can understand what they are, you should know the use of transition words and phrases first. Fundamentally, those words and phrases help on making essays easier to read.

These patterns can give a "lift" to your writing. Practice them. Try using two or three different patterns for your introductory paragraph and see which introductory paragraph is best it's often a delicate matter of tone and of knowing who your audience is. Do not forget, though, that your introductory paragraph should also include a thesis statement to let your reader know what your topic is and what you are going to say about that topic.

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