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Why are transition words and phrases important in writing?

Transition words and phrases help writers organize and structure their ideas. Transition words and phrases assist with the flow of sentences and paragraphs and alert readers when the author is about to make another point. When you read, “In addition…” you,  as a reader, are awaiting the next point.

 Agreement / Addition / Similarity

Transitional words or phrases such as “like also,” or “in addition,” help reinforce ideas and show agreement with what has been said before.

in the first place

not only … but also

as a matter of fact

in like manner

in addition

coupled with

in the same fashion / way

first, second, third

in the light of

not to mention

to say nothing of

equally important

by the same token

again

to

and

also

then

equally

identically

uniquely

like

as

too

moreover

as well as

together with

of course

likewise

comparatively

correspondingly

similarly

furthermore

additionally

Opposition / Limitation / Contradiction

Transition words like “but, rather and or,” express that there is contrary evidence. These types of words help show that alternatives or contrasts exist.

although this may be true

in contrast

different from

of course …, but

on the other hand

on the contrary

at the same time

in spite of

even so / though

be that as it may

then again

above all

in reality

after all

but

(and) still

unlike

or

(and) yet

while

albeit

besides

although

instead

whereas

despite

conversely

otherwise

however

rather

nevertheless

regardless

notwithstanding

Examples / Support / Emphasis

These transitional words or phrases help point out that alert  the reader that a point is about to be made.

in other words

to put it differently

for one thing

as an illustration

in this case

for this reason

to put it another way

that is to say

with attention to

by all means

important to realize

another key point

first thing to remember

most compelling evidence

must be remembered

point often overlooked

to point out

on the positive / negative side

with this in mind

notably

including

like

to be sure

namely

chiefly

truly

indeed

certainly

surely

markedly

especially

specifically

expressively

surprisingly

frequently

significantly

in fact

in general

in particular

in detail

for example

for instance

to demonstrate

to emphasize

to repeat

to clarify

to explain

to enumerate

such as

Cause / Condition / Purpose

These transitional words show the reader that the point being made has conditions that apply

in the event that

granted (that)

as / so long as

on (the) condition (that)

for the purpose of

with this intention

with this in mind

in the hope that

to the end that

for fear that

in order to

seeing / being that

in view of

If… then

unless

when

whenever

since

while

because of

as

since

while

lest

in case

provided that

given that

only / even if

so that

so as to

owing to

inasmuch as

due to

Effect / Consequence / Result

Transition words such as “thus, then, accordingly, consequently, therefore, and henceforth” are time words that suggest a linkage to something that has happened.

as a result

under those circumstances

in that case

for this reason

for

thus

because the

then

hence

consequently

therefore

thereupon

forthwith

accordingly

henceforth

Conclusion / Summary / Restatement

These transition words and phrases help summarize ideas.

as can be seen

generally speaking

in the final analysis

all things considered

as shown above

in the long run

given these points

as has been noted

in a word

for the most part

after all

in fact

in summary

in conclusion

in short

in brief

in essence

to summarize

on balance

altogether

overall

ordinarily

usually

by and large

to sum up

on the whole

in any event

in either case

all in all

Time / Chronology / Sequence

These transitional words signal the limiting or defining of time.

at the present time

from time to time

sooner or later

at the same time

up to the present time

to begin with

in due time

until now

as soon as

in the meantime

in a moment

without delay

in the first place

all of a sudden

at this instant

immediately

quickly

finally

after

later

last

until

since

then

before

hence

since

when

once

about

next

now

formerly

suddenly

shortly

henceforth

whenever

eventually

meanwhile

further

during

first, second

in time

prior to

forthwith

straightaway

instantly

presently

occasionally

 

Space / Location / Place

These transition words and phrases are often used to restrict, limit or qualify space.

in the middle

to the left/right

in front of

on this side

in the distance

here and there

in the foreground

in the background

in the center of

adjacent to

opposite to

here

there

next

where

from

over

near

above

below

down

up

under

further

beyond

nearby

wherever

around

between

before

alongside

amid

among

beneath

beside

behind

across

For Word format please click below:

Transition Words

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