Transition words and phrases are one of the most important parts of any essay, whether you’re writing in elementary school or university, so it’s important to understand how they work and how to use them effectively in your work.
Here, we’ll teach you how to find and choose transition words, and how to use them in the conclusion of your essay to set the tone and highlight the most important parts of your paper.
How to Use Transition Words for the Conclusion in Essays
Knowing how to effectively use transition words for the conclusion of your essays will make them more coherent and easier to read.
A concluding sentence is often written in summary form, but with transition words, it can be more creative.
Transition words like finally, in conclusion, on the other hand, and though help give a sense of closure to your essay.
Transitions also allow you to create a hierarchy of ideas by using specific language that lets readers know what’s coming next, such as using finally or on the other hand.
Picking the Right Transitions to Conclude an Essay
There are several options available for those who are looking to get their transitions just right.
Generally speaking, there are three broad categories that tend to be used.
They include connecting words, contrastive words, and summarizing words.
Connecting words (such as finally, consequently, hence, therefore, etc.) generally indicate that another connection is about to be made.
Contrastive words (such as however and on the other hand) usually indicate that a connection has been made that differs from the preceding connection.
Finally, summarizing words (such as in conclusion and in short) typically refer back to earlier statements in order to emphasize the key points in a concise manner.
One good way to decide whether to use a connective, contrastive, or summarizing word is by making sure it makes sense logically and matches the tone of your paper.
For example, if your essay was about restaurants and the food they serve, then contrastive transitional words would not match this topic very well.
On the other hand, if you were writing about business processes and had already discussed different types of meetings, then contrastively-worded transitions would work better because they would indicate that a new meeting type was going to be discussed in relation to previous meetings.
What are some transition words to start a conclusion?
First and foremost, you’ll need a transition word that matches your tone. If you’re concluding an essay that was serious or formal, then you may want a more formal transitional word.
If your essay is light-hearted or friendly in tone, then a lighter or friendlier transitional word would be suitable. You can also mix it up by using different transitional words depending on where they occur within your conclusion paragraph.
If you start with a connective word, then use a contrastive one at the end of the paragraph. Alternatively, if you open with a contrastive word, try ending with one too.
Using all three categories throughout your conclusion paragraph creates unity and cohesion while giving readers notice about what information is to come next.
Also, do not forget to consider who your audience might be when deciding which transitional words to use in your concluding paragraphs.
Here are examples of transition words to start a conclusion:
- Lastly, in conclusion, in sum, and to conclude are all used similarly to summarize information.
- However, regardless, on the contrary, and yet can be used instead to show disagreement or disprove something said previously.
- Furthermore, moreover, still, and nonetheless are considered the middle ground between contrastive and connective words.
Here is a list of other transition words that can be used in the concluding paragraph:
- Last but not least, nevertheless, or yet are used to emphasize a particular point.
- That said, however, and nonetheless are used to contradict something that was just said.
- In summary and on balance are used as transitional words because they indicate that something has been repeated.
- All things considered and considered in light of these facts are two options that help stress that all details have been taken into account.
- Consequently and therefore are often used interchangeably, but should be carefully chosen so that they don’t conflict with the tone of your paper.
- Finally concludes both lists; its main purpose is to announce closure for the essay.
Transition Words for the Conclusion Final Remarks
Appropriate use of transition words in an essay conclusion does not necessarily depend on the type of content included. It does depend on how you want your conclusion to read.
For example, In summary, and on balance will create different tones than however, nonetheless, or in any event. When choosing transitions for the conclusion, consider who your audience might be.
Certain words are appropriate for specific audiences. Additionally, take into consideration how formal or informal your essay is before deciding which word to use.
Also, make sure that you consider the tone of your work before selecting transitions that don’t match the mood of your piece. Do not forget to consider the relevance of your topic.
The same word won’t always mean the same thing across genres and topics.
Take care to properly communicate with your audience and know that there is no wrong way to use a transition – as long as it serves its purpose in providing clarity without being overdone.
General Tips on Writing a Strong Conclusion
No matter what type of essay you are writing, the conclusion is one of the most important paragraphs. This is where you will summarize your main points and leave the reader with a final thought.
Always remember that the concluding paragraph should summarize all of the key points made throughout the paper.
A great way to do this is by restating your thesis statement in different ways and then restating it again as a question so that readers know they can expect a complete answer when they follow up on this question after reading your work.
If there are any pieces of evidence from within the paper that help make your point, include them here too; but don’t give away too much information about them so as not to take away from their importance within the paper itself.
When writing a research paper the last sentence should contain a call to action to get people interested in researching the topic further or taking an action related to the subject matter.
It should also close out the piece with a feeling of completion.
Here is a summary of the general tips on how to write a strong conclusion
- Summarize the main points.
- Provide evidence or examples that support your argument.
- Restate your thesis statement or claim in order to emphasize it.
- Give directions for future research or action that might be taken based on this information (if applicable).
- State any other thoughts about the topic.
- Include a call to action to encourage the reader to think more deeply about the material covered or take some kind of action based on the content presented.
- The conclusion should provide closure for the essay, leaving readers satisfied that they have come full circle and learned something new.
- In some cases, a quote may be used at the end of an essay’s conclusion in order to strengthen its impact.