Even if you are a really good writer, your essay will be hard to follow if you do not include the right transition words. Transition words make the structure of your essay clear to the reader, and they can also help you cover more topics or transitions in fewer sentences.
If you are having trouble with organization and flow, try choosing some transition words from this list and adding them to your next essay!
Transition Words for Essay Writing
What are transition words?
Transition words are a way of describing how one sentence relates to another. When used correctly, transition words can help your essay flow more smoothly.
The most common transition word is, however. For example, you might write, I went swimming in the ocean however I got stung by a jellyfish. This sentence starts with the action of going swimming and then provides an alternate outcome of getting stung by a jellyfish. Another popular transition word is nevertheless, which means despite what has just been said.
Transition words not only make sentences flow smoother, but they also increase your chances of being understood. They allow readers to better understand the relationship between sentences as well as improve the pace or tone of an essay.
There are many different types of transition words that exist that can be categorized into the following categories: time (e.g., after, before), cause-effect (e.g., consequently, therefore) comparison (e.g., similarly, instead) and contrast (e.g., although). Transition words should be used sparingly so that their effect on writing isn’t overused or meaningless; if it seems like you’re using them every few lines, try revising your sentences so they’re more direct and coherent on their own rather than relying on transition words to link thoughts together.
You should try to use transition words when there’s some kind of shift in content, meaning, or emphasis. It’s important to find the right balance between simply linking thoughts and creating separation so that each sentence has its own topic sentence.
How can I use transition words in my essay?
Transition words are important for connecting sentences and paragraphs. They can also help readers better understand the flow of your essay. When writing an essay, transition words are a good way of making sure that the reader is able to follow along with what you’re saying. These words can be used at the beginning of a sentence or paragraph, or in the middle of one.
The most common ones are in addition, moreover, furthermore, in contrast, but and yet.
For example, you might start off by explaining how to use these transitional words. Here is how you can use transitions in your own essay to give it more structure and make it easier for readers to follow along.
1. Use transition words to connect thoughts
When writing an essay, transitions are useful to link ideas together. Think about them like glue– they can hold different thoughts together and make your essay flow seamlessly. One way to do this is through however which means in spite of something. For instance, if you were describing two cars, you could say one car was red while the other was blue; however, they were both fast.
Notice how the second part doesn’t seem out of place because we have been discussing only cars up until this point? That’s because we connected those ideas using, however. In another scenario, let’s say you wanted to talk about both apples and oranges. You could do so by linking them as follows: Apples come from trees while oranges grow on bushes; however, they taste similar. Here, however, connects two things that seem very different on the surface.
It shows that even though apples come from trees and oranges grow on bushes, the fruits themselves taste similar. Another word you might want to try is hence, which means as a result of that.
2. Use transition words when transitioning between subjects
If you change subjects in your essay, use a transitioning word to avoid confusion. There are many ways to do this. A common technique is to use either consequently or thus, which means respectively because of that (consequence) and as a result of that (thus). Let’s say you wanted to move from talking about math problems in school to playing outside.
You could write: “As students get older, they tend to spend less time in class and more time outside playings, consequently their skills in math deteriorate over time.” The use of consequently in this sentence lets the reader know that there is a connection between being outside and having lower math skills later on in life.
Generally, transition words are best used at the end of one sentence and the beginning of the next. Try not to use too many different words in a row without any pauses – doing so can confuse readers.
3. Transition words can help clarify complex ideas
If you need to explain complicated concepts, transition words will help your audience keep up. Transition words are a great way of bringing people along in your journey of thinking and formulating your argument. Even if you don’t think you need them, they can help make reading and understanding your essay much easier.
When explaining complex ideas, you may find yourself needing to introduce new vocabulary. This is where bridging words such as firstly and secondly, formerly and latterly, and in the same vein can be helpful.
Complex ideas are a challenge to break down and communicate to others, especially when you use technical terms that the average person is unfamiliar with. Introduce a new idea by combining transition words with the definition of the term. This helps your readers see the relevance of your discussion.
4. Transition words and phrases make essays clearer and easier to read
When you’re done, your essay should flow and make sense. Using transition words in your essays is a simple way to achieve this. They are the tools that writers use to create coherence and cohesion in a piece of text.
By choosing wisely, you’ll be able to create a logical and easy-to-follow story for your audience.
The use of transition words can make the difference between a coherent, flowing essay and one that seems choppy and fragmented.
5. Use transition words to connect body Paragraphs
Transition words are often used to tie together two sentences into a paragraph. Doing this will not only provide clarity but also make your paragraphs sound smoother and more cohesive.
For example, if you are making a point about how drugs affect children, you might start off with an introductory sentence using an introductory transition word such as hence or therefore. In the following paragraph, some examples of appropriate transitional words might be however or furthermore because these would lead to another point relating back to what was discussed in the previous paragraph.
Transition Words for Essays: Concluding Remarks
Effective use of transition words is an important skill for anyone who is writing to communicate. When you use transition words, your essay will become clear and easier to understand. However, it is important to use transition words sparingly, as too many can make your essay seem choppy and unorganized.
Choose the most appropriate words that fit the context of your essay and you are sure to impress your audience. It is essential to be aware of your audience, as well as the purpose of your paper. When in doubt, choose the more conservative approach. This will ensure that you will not lose the interest of your audience.
Furthermore, be mindful of how you order the information in your essay. You want to place information that is less interesting or less critical earlier on so that readers will feel compelled to continue reading until they reach the information that interests them more.