A transition or linking word is a word or phrase that shows the relationship between paragraphs or sections of a text or speech. Transitions provide greater cohesion by making it more explicit or signaling how ideas relate to one another. Transitions are "bridges" that "carry a reader from section to section." Transitions guide a reader through steps of logic, increments of time, or through physical space. Transitions "...connect words and ideas so that your readers don't have to do the mental work for you."
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In simple terms, a transition word demonstrates the relationship between two portions of the text or spoken language. By using the imagery of a bridge, we can see how these words take us from one statement to another. By using these words we can better build a sentence and convey what we are trying to say in a more concise manner. There is more than one type of transition word. This section will introduce the most commonly used.
- To show similarity or reinforce: and, also, too, similarly, equally, identically, equally important, together with, not only ... but also, coupled with, in the light of, not to mention, as well as, furthermore, moreover, in the same fashion/ way, likewise, comparatively, correspondingly, by the same token, uniquely, to say nothing of.
- To introduce an opposing point: but, however, yet, on the contrary, on the other hand, in contrast, still, neither, nor, nevertheless, besides
- To signal a restatement: that is, in other words, in simpler terms, to put it differently, indeed.
- To introduce an item in a series: first, in the first place, *second, in the second place, for one thing...., for another, next, then, in addition, finally, last,
- To introduce an example: in particular, specifically, for instance, for example, that is, namely
- To show causality: as a result, hence, thus, so, then, because, since, for, consequently, accordingly, therefore
- To introduce a summary or conclusion: in conclusion, finally, all in all, evidently, clearly, actually, to sum up, altogether, of course
- To signal a concession: naturally, of course, it is true, to be sure, granted, certainly
- To resume main argument after a concession: all the same, even though, still, nevertheless, nonetheless
- To show frequency: frequently, hourly, often, occasionally, now and then, day after day, every so often, again and again
- To show duration: during, briefly, for a long time, minute by minute, while
- To show a particular time: now, then, at that time, in those days, last Sunday, next Christmas, in 1999, at the beginning of August, at six o’clock, first thing in the morning, two months ago, when,
- To introduce a beginning: at first, in the beginning, since, before then
- To introduce a middle: in the meantime, meanwhile, as it was happening, at that moment, at the same time, simultaneously, next, then
- To signal an end (or beyond): eventually, finally, at last, in the end, later, afterward
- To show closeness: close to, near, next to, alongside, adjacent to, facing, side by side
- To show long distance: in the distance, far, beyond, away, there
- To show direction: up/down, sideways, along, across, to the right/left, in front of/behind, above/below, inside/outside: toward/away from
Transition words of agreement, addition, or similarityEdit
The transition words like also, in addition, and, likewise, add information, reinforce ideas, and express agreement with preceding material.
- 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
- as well as
- together with
- of course
- first, second, third
- in the light of
- not to mention
- to say nothing of
- equally important
- by the same token
- what's more
- Rappaport 2010, p. 95
- Garner 2002, p. 65
- "Transition Words and Phrases: Useful List and Examples". 7esl.com. 7ESL. Retrieved 5 Jan 2019.
- Lindemann 2001, p. 152
- UW Writing Center
- Purdue Online Writing Lab
- Smart Words
- "Transition words used in content creation - Complete GUIDE". Growwwise. 2018-12-02. Retrieved 2018-12-02.
- Rappaport, Bret (2010). "Using the Elements of Rhythm, Flow, and Tone to Create a More Effective and Persuasive Acoustic Experience in Legal Writing" (PDF). The Journal of the Legal Writing Institute. The Legal Writing Institute. 16 (1): 65–116. Retrieved 30 March 2013.
- Garner, Bryan A. (2002). The Elements of Legal Style (2nd ed.). Oxford University Press. p. 65. ISBN 0195141628.
- "Coordinate". Merriam Webster. Archived from the original on 30 March 2013. Retrieved 30 March 2013.
- Erika Lindemann (2001). A Rhetoric for Writing Teachers (4th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. p. 146. ISBN 0-19-513045-6.
- Ryan Weber, Karl Stolley. "Transitions and Transitional Devices". Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL). West Lafayette, Indiana: Purdue University. Retrieved 30 March 2013.
- Taraba, Joanna. "Transitional Words and Phrases". University of Richmond Writing Center. Richmond, Virginia: University of Richmond. Archived from the original on 30 March 2013. Retrieved 30 March 2013.
- "Transition Words". Smart Words. Archived from the original on 29 March 2013. Retrieved 29 March 2013.
- "The Writer's Handbook: Transitional Words and Phrases". University of Wisconsin Writing Center. Madison, Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin-Madison. 2012. Archived from the original on 30 March 2013. Retrieved 30 March 2013.