Paragraph Transition Words

paragraph transitional words

Transition words and phrases may appear anywhere in an essay but their most important value comes as paragraph transition words connecting the idea in one paragraph with another idea in a succeeding paragraph. They contribute to attaining the seamless flow of writing from start to finish by establishing the specific relationship between the idea in one paragraph to that of the next. They project a sense of coherence by indicating that the whole composition contains but one main argument – one thesis.

Paragraphs are the basic building blocks of an essay and each paragraph represents one idea. To achieve a semblance of coherence and unity of thought, transition words are usually used in the beginning of sentences to establish specific relationships between paragraphs and make each one naturally follow the one before it and then smoothly flow to the paragraph that comes after it.

They are used to indicate specific relationships. Below is a list of paragraph transition words grouped under the relationship they indicate:

  • To add information, you can use the following transition words or phrases – in addition, also, and, moreover, then, too, finally, as well, besides, furthermore, equally important.
  • To compare different ideas, you can use – similarly, likewise, in the same manner, in the same way.
  • To concede a point, you can use – obviously, of course, agreed, certainly, granted, to be sure.
  • To provide an example, you can use – for example, in other words, for instance, specifically, to illustrate.
  • To summarize ideas, you can use – in conclusion, in brief, to sum up, finally, hence, in short.
  • To present contrasting ideas, you can use – on the other hand, however, in contrast, nonetheless, nevertheless, yet, at the same time, conversely.
  • To show a relative location, you can use – in the background, in the foreground, nearby, there, between, adjacent, in the back, in the distance.
  • To show something resulting from a previous idea, you can use – consequently, as a result, therefore, thus, so, accordingly, thereby.
  • To show the order of ideas relative to time, you can use – afterward, today, currently, eventually, in the future, finally, later, next, most important, subsequently, first, second, third, soon, when, sometimes.

Paragraph segues become highly possible using the right choice of paragraph transition words. They ensure the smooth transition from the idea discussed in the last to the next paragraph’s ideas. These transition words serve as your writing glue to help your ideas flow freely and logically throughout your essay. It will be totally disastrous for a writer to assume that his readers would know what he knows and pursue his write ups with such a thought. The best approach is to write as if the readers need all the information you possess and that they need some stepping stones to cross the stream of ideas you are presenting to them.