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It is a good idea to occasionally use linking words and phrases at the start of a new paragraph. They can help to link what you have said in the previous paragraph to what you are about to say in your new paragraph.
These link words and phrases are often referred to as signposts. This is because they help to indicate to the reader when one point ends and other begins, as well as the relationship between each point.
Used with care, they can help to guide examiners and tutors through your essay. As well as bolster the impression of a coherent, flowing and logical piece of work.
Useful linking words and phrases that can be used at the start of new paragraphs:
A contrary explanation is that, …
As a consequence, …
As a result, …
As we have seen, …
At the same time, …
An equally significant aspect of…
Another, significant factor in…
Before considering X it is important to note Y
By the same token, …
But we should also consider, …
Despite these criticisms, …it’s popularity remains high.
Certainly, there is no shortage of disagreement within…
Chaytor, … in particular, has focused on the
Despite this, …
Despite these criticisms, … the popularity of X remains largely undiminished.
Each of these theoretical positions make an important contribution to our understanding of, …
Evidence for in support of this position, can be found in…,
For this reason, …
For these reasons, …
Given, the current high profile debate with regard to, …it is quite surprising that …
Having considered X, it is also reasonable to look at …
In addition to, …
In contrast, …
In this way, …
In this manner, …
In the final analysis, …
In short, …
It can be seen from the above analysis that, …
It could also be said that, …
It is however, important to note the limitations of…
It is important to note however, that …
It is important however not to assume the applicability of, …in all cases.
It is important however not to overemphasis the strengths of …
In the face of such criticism, proponents of, …have responded in a number of ways.
Notwithstanding such criticism, ….it’s popularity remains largely undiminished.
Notwithstanding these limitations, ….it worth remains in a number of situations.
Noting the compelling nature of this new evidence, …has suggested that.
Nevertheless, …remains a growing problem.
Nonetheless, the number of, …has continued to expand at an exponential rate.
Despite these criticisms, …it’s popularity remains high.
On the other hand, critics of, …point to its blindness, with respect to.
Of central concern therefore to, …sociologists is explaining how societal processes and institutions…
Proponents of…, have also suggested that…
The sentiment expressed in the quotation, embodies the view that, …
This interpretation of, … has not been without it’s detractors however.
This approach is similar to the, …. position
This critique, unfortunately, implies a singular cause of, …
This point is also sustained by the work of, …
This counter argument is supported by evidence from, …
The use of the term, …
There appears then to be an acceleration in the growth of
There is also, however, a further point to be considered.
These technological developments have greatly increased the growth in, …
To be able to understand, …
While such failures must not be discounted, … there were in comparison small, when compared
Whilst the discussion in the preceding paragraph, …
Whether crime rates were actually lower at this time continues to be a matter of debate. Evidence from…
There are an almost limitless number of linking phrases and words one can use. What is important is that they complement the style of your writing.
Use these examples to arouse your creativity.
Remember that you don’t have to use them all the time. Using words like, ‘therefore’ ‘subsequently’ ‘moreover’ etc. for every new paragraph would probably become repetitive and detract from the key component of most academic work – critical analysis.
Finally, remember to succinctly, identify the key paragraphs and/or sections of your essay during your introductory paragraph. Then restate them along side an unambiguous position in your concluding paragraph. Again this will help to communicate a clear and understandable progression and structure, to those who read or mark your essay.
Best wishes. S J Tonge.
Many function words with H are reduced in conversational English by dropping the H: had, have, has, for example. Learn how these words should sound, and how to link them into the sentence so they sound perfect.
Now, if you drop the H, you have to be certain that you link it to the word before. Tell her, tell her, it’s almost like it becomes one word. Teh-ler, tell her. How do you think I’m going to pronounce this phrase? I’m going to drop the H, reducing the word ‘he’. And because I’m going to do that, I want to make sure that I really link things. So I’m actually going to almost think of the Z sound as beginning a word ‘zi’. Wuh-zi there? Was he there? Was he there? Try saying that all very smooth and linked. Was he there? Was he there?
Before we go further, let’s talk quickly about punctuation. A period, a comma, a colon, a semicolon, a dash: these things will all signify a stop, a break, a pause. So, we don’t want to link sounds over that kind of punctuation. Let’s take a look at an example sentence. At first he never came; he now comes regularly. Notice there was that pause there where the semicolon is. And because of that I didn’t link, and I didn’t drop the H in ‘he’ the second time. At first he never came: I do drop that H, reducing the word and linking. At first he, at first he, at first he never came; he now comes regularly.
So, common function words beginning with H: has, have, had. These are helping verbs. Example: What have you done? What have you done? Notice that the H is dropped in ‘have’, and the vowel is actually reduced from aa to the schwa: uv, uv, uv. That is how we’re pronouncing the word ‘have’ in the sentence. What have, what have, what have you done? And do note that it’s linked to everything around it. What have you, what have you, what have you done?
Another example: my friend has seen it twice. The word ‘has’ is pronounced without the H and the vowel sound is reduced to the schwa. My friend has, has, has, my friend has seen it twice. Also, again, it is linked to everything around it. My friend has seen it twice. Now, I want to point out that in ‘What have you done?’, ‘have’ is the helping verb for ‘done’. And in ‘My friend has seen it twice’, ‘has’ is the helping verb for ‘seen’.
Now if these words were the only verb in the sentence, the main verb in the sentence, they wouldn’t be reduced. Because then they would be the verb, not a helping verb. For example, I have two. Now, I may say ‘have’ very quickly, but I’m probably not going to drop the H, and I’m not going to reduce the vowel. I have two. Because it is the only verb in the sentence. Therefore, it is not a helping verb. It is the main verb. I have two.
How do you think I will pronounce ‘her’ here? If you guessed er, you’re right. I saw her sister in Chicago. I saw – er – sister, saw her sister, saw her sister. I saw her sister in Chicago.
And here, how will I pronounce ‘his’? Iz, iz, I will drop that H. What was his name again? What was, iz, name again? What was his name again? What was his name again? And how will I pronounce ‘him’? I will drop that H. ‘Im, ‘im. I told him no. I told – im – no. I told him no. I told him no. How will I pronounce ‘his’? I’m going to drop the H. Do you remember John? This is his sister. This is – is – sister. This is his sister.
RECAP: Function words are usually unstressed, and often unstressed words are reduced (reduced: a sound is dropped or is changed to another vowel, like AA changing to UH). Reduced words that begin with H are often pronounced: 1) with no H sound 2) linked to the word before Example: Was he there? Words that begin with H that often reduced and link this way: hi, her, his, him; have, had has (when they are helping verbs and not the main verb).
As you listen to native speakers, keep this in mind. Try to identify it and then imitate it. And when you feel comfortable, bring it into your everyday speech. That’s it, and thanks so much for using Rachel’s English.
For the vast majority of students, essay writing doesn’t always come easily. Writing at academic level is an acquired skill that can literally take years to master – indeed, many students find they only start to feel really confident writing essays just as their undergraduate course comes to an end!
If this is you, and you’ve come here looking for words and phrases to use in your essay, you’re in the right place. We’ve pulled together a list of essential academic words you can use in the introduction, body, and conclusion of your essays.
Whilst your ideas and arguments should always be your own, borrowing some of the words and phrases listed below is a great way to articulate your ideas more effectively, and ensure that you keep your reader’s attention from start to finish.
It goes without saying (but we’ll say it anyway) that there’s a certain formality that comes with academic writing. Casual and conversational phrases have no place. Obviously, there are no LOLs, LMFAOs, and OMGs. But formal academic writing can be much more subtle than this, and as we’ve mentioned above, requires great skill.
So, to get you started on polishing your own essay writing ability, try using the words in this list as an inspirational starting point.
Words to use in your introduction
The trickiest part of academic writing often comes right at the start, with your introduction. Of course, once you’ve done your plan and have your arguments laid out, you need to actually put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and begin your essay.
You need to consider that your reader doesn’t have a clue about your topic or arguments, so your first sentence must summarise these. Explain what your essay is going to talk about as though you were explaining it to a five year old – without losing the formality of your academic writing, of course! To do this, use any of the below words or phrases to help keep you on track.
1. Firstly, secondly, thirdly
Even though it sounds obvious, your argument will be clearer if you deliver the ideas in the right order. These words can help you to offer clarity and structure to the way you expose your ideas. This is an extremely effective method of presenting the facts clearly. Don’t be too rigid and feel you have to number each point, but using this system can be a good way to get an argument off the ground, and link arguments together.
2. In view of; in light of; considering
These essay phrases are useful to begin your essay. They help you pose your argument based on what other authors have said or a general concern about your research. They can also both be used when a piece of evidence sheds new light on an argument. Here’s an example: The result of the American invasion has severely impaired American interests in the Middle East, exponentially increasing popular hostility to the United States throughout the region, a factor which has proved to be a powerful recruitment tool for extremist terrorist groups (Isakhan, 2015). Considering [or In light of / In view of] the perceived resulting threat to American interests, it could be argued that the Bush administration failed to fully consider the impact of their actions before pushing forward with the war.
3. According to X; X stated that; referring to the views of X
Introducing the views of an author who has a comprehensive knowledge of your particular area of study is a crucial part of essay writing. Including a quote that fits naturally into your work can be a bit of a struggle, but these academic phrases provide a great way in.
Even though it’s fine to reference a quote in your introduction, we don’t recommend you start your essay with a direct quote. Use your own words to sum up the views you’re mentioning, for example:
As Einstein often reiterated, experiments can prove theories, but experiments don’t give birth to theories.
See the difference?
And be sure to reference correctly too, when using quotes or paraphrasing someone else’s words.
The flow of your essay is extremely important. You don’t want your reader to be confused by the rhythm of your writing and get distracted away from your argument, do you? No! So, we recommend using some of the following ‘flow’ words, which are guaranteed to help you articulate your ideas and arguments in a chronological and structured order.
4. Moreover; furthermore; in addition; what’s more
These types of academic phrases are perfect for expanding or adding to a point you’ve already made without interrupting the flow altogether. “Moreover”, “furthermore” and “in addition” are also great linking phrases to begin a new paragraph.
On the data of this trial, no treatment recommendations should be made. The patients are suspected, but not confirmed, to suffer from pneumonia. Furthermore, five days is too short a follow up time to confirm clinical cure.
5. In order to; to that end; to this end
These are helpful academic phrases to introduce an explanation or state your aim. Oftentimes your essay will have to prove how you intend to achieve your goals. By using these sentences you can easily expand on points that will add clarity to the reader.
For example: My research entailed hours of listening and recording the sound of whales in order to understand how they communicate.
Dutch tech companies offer support in the ﬁght against the virus. To this end, an online meeting took place on Wednesday…
Even though we recommend the use of these phrases, DO NOT use them too often. You may think you sound like a real academic but it can be a sign of overwriting!
6. In other words; to put it another way; that is; to put it more simply
Complement complex ideas with simple descriptions by using these sentences. These are excellent academic phrases to improve the continuity of your essay writing. They should be used to explain a point you’ve already made in a slightly different way. Don’t use them to repeat yourself, but rather to elaborate on a certain point that needs further explanation. Or, to succinctly round up what just came before.
For example:A null hypothesis is a statement that there is no relationship between phenomena. In other words, there is no treatment effect.
Nothing could come to be in this pre-world time, “because no part of such a time possesses, as compared with any other, a distinguishing condition of existence rather than non-existence.” That is, nothing exists in this pre-world time, and so there can be nothing that causes the world to come into existence.
7. Similarly; likewise; another key fact to remember; as well as; an equally significant aspect of
These essay words are a good choice to add a piece of information that agrees with an argument or fact you just mentioned. In academic writing, it is very relevant to include points of view that concur with your opinion. This will help you to situate your research within a research context.
Also, academic words and phrases like the above are also especially useful so as not to repeat the word ‘also’ too many times. (We did that on purpose to prove our point!) Your reader will be put off by the repetitive use of simple conjunctions. The quality of your essay will drastically improve just by using academic phrases and words such as ‘similarly’, ‘as well as’, etc. Here, let us show you what we mean:
In 1996, then-transport minister Steve Norris enthused about quadrupling cycling trips by 2012. Similarly, former prime minister David Cameron promised a “cycling revolution” in 2013…
Or Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI) aims to bridge the gap of access to electricity across the continent (…). Another key fact to remember is that it must expand cost-efficient access to electricity to nearly 1 billion people.
The wording “not only… but also” is a useful way to elaborate on a similarity in your arguments but in a more striking way.
Academic essays often include opposite opinions or information in order to prove a point. It is important to show all the aspects that are relevant to your research. Include facts and researchers’ views that disagree with a point of your essay to show your knowledge of your particular field of study. Below are a few words and ways of introducing alternative arguments.
8. Conversely; however; alternatively; on the contrary; on the other hand; whereas
Finding a seamless method to present an alternative perspective or theory can be hard work, but these terms and phrases can help you introduce the other side of the argument. Let’s look at some examples:
89% of respondents living in joint families reported feeling financially secure. Conversely, only 64% of those who lived in nuclear families said they felt financially secure.
The first protagonist has a social role to fill in being a father to those around him, whereas the second protagonist relies on the security and knowledge offered to him by Chaplin.
“On the other hand” can also be used to make comparisons when worded together with “on the one hand.”
9. By contrast; in comparison; then again; that said; yet
These essay phrases show contrast, compare facts, and present uncertainty regarding a point in your research. “That said” and “yet” in particular will demonstrate your expertise on a topic by showing the conditions or limitations of your research area. For example:
All the tests were positive. That said, we must also consider the fact that some of them had inconclusive results.
10. Despite this; provided that; nonetheless
Use these phrases and essay words to demonstrate a positive aspect of your subject-matter regardless of lack of evidence, logic, coherence, or criticism. Again, this kind of information adds clarity and expertise to your academic writing.
A good example is:
Despite the criticism received by X, the popularity of X remains undiminished.
11. Importantly; significantly; notably; another key point
Another way to add contrast is by highlighting the relevance of a fact or opinion in the context of your research. These academic words help to introduce a sentence or paragraph that contains a very meaningful point in your essay.
A good piece of academic writing will always include examples. Illustrating your essay with examples will make your arguments stronger. Most of the time, examples are a way to clarify an explanation; they usually offer an image that the reader can recognise. The most common way to introduce an illustration is “for example.” However, in order not to repeat yourself here are a few other options.
12. For instance; to give an illustration of; to exemplify; to demonstrate; as evidence; to elucidate
The academic essays that are receiving top marks are the ones that back up every single point made. These academic phrases are a useful way to introduce an example. If you have a lot of examples, avoid repeating the same phrase to facilitate the readability of your essay.
Here’s an example:
Concluding words for essays are necessary to wrap up your argument. Your conclusion must include a brief summary of the ideas that you just exposed without being redundant. The way these ideas are expressed should lead to the final statement and core point you have arrived at in your present research.
13. In conclusion; to conclude; to summarise; in sum; in the final analysis; on close analysis
These are phrases for essays that will introduce your concluding paragraph. You can use them at the beginning of a sentence. They will show the reader that your essay is coming to an end:
On close analysis and appraisal, we see that the study by Cortis lacks essential features of the highest quality quantitative research.
14. Persuasive; compelling
Essay words like these ones can help you emphasize the most relevant arguments of your paper. Both are used in the same way: “the most persuasive/compelling argument is…”.
15. Therefore; this suggests that; it can be seen that; the consequence is
When you’re explaining the significance of the results of a piece of research, these phrases provide the perfect lead up to your explanation.
16. Above all; chiefly; especially; most significantly; it should be noted
Your summary should include the most relevant information or research factor that guided you to your conclusion. Contrary to words such as “persuasive” or “compelling”, these essay words are helpful to draw attention to an important point. For example:
The feasibility and effectiveness of my research has been proven chiefly in the last round of laboratory tests.
Film noir is, and will continue to be, highly debatable, controversial, and unmarketable – but above all, for audience members past, present and to come, extremely enjoyable as a form of screen media entertainment.
17. All things considered
This essay phrase is meant to articulate how you give reasons to your conclusions. It means that after you considered all the aspects related to your study, you have arrived to the conclusion you are demonstrating.
After mastering the use of these academic words and phrases, we guarantee you will see an immediate change in the quality of your essays. The structure will be easier to follow, and the reader’s experience will improve. You’ll also feel more confident articulating your ideas and using facts and examples. So jot them all down, and watch your essays go from ‘good’ to ‘great’!
All’s well that ends well… including your essay! Writing a strong conclusion paragraph for your college essay is important if you want to leave a positive lasting impression on your reader.
The conclusion is your chance to leave a lasting and thoughtful impression on your reader. You want to wrap up your essay in a way that makes the reader glad they took the time to read it.
Once you’ve laid out a solid introduction and supported your ideas with quality details, you want to finish strong by wrapping up your thoughts perfectly.
The conclusion paragraph, in theory, seems like the easiest part of an essay to write..really, you’re just wrapping up thoughts you’ve already written. But conclusions (and introductions) are sometimes the trickiest parts of an essay to get right.
Learning how to write a conclusion takes practice, but there are many tips to help guide you through the process. With a few hints about what to do (and what not to do), you’ll be crafting stellar conclusions in no time!
Why does a conclusion paragraph matter?
Your conclusion is your final word in the argument you’ve written out. It can inspire your reader to see things from a different point of view or challenge the reader to open his mind to new ideas. It also serves as a reminder of everything the reader has just learned and ties together all of the points you’ve made.
You want to craft your last words well so that people take something important away from what you’ve written. It should also provide an understanding of your topic as a whole and how all of the different claims you’ve made in your essay connect back to your central argument.
How should I format a conclusion paragraph?
There are some basic formulas that fit in with a standard college essay format that can help you get started on laying out your final thoughts.
Most conclusion paragraphs are four to five sentences long and should average between 50–75 words. They should be long enough to get your point across, but short enough that you’re not rehashing every idea you’ve ever had on the subject.
Conclusion paragraphs begin by revisiting the main idea definition. The first sentence reminds the reader of what this has all been about. This sentence revisits your thesis statement or main topic.
If you revisit the hook from the introduction of your essay and tie it into your conclusion, you’ll make your piece come full circle and tie all of your arguments together.
The next two to three sentences tie together the main points you have used to support your thesis or central topic. Finally, your closing sentence is where you drive home the meat of your message and leave a lasting impression on the reader.
What should I include in my conclusion?
Every conclusion is trying to accomplish similar goals: making a lasting and positive impression on the reader, tying all of the pieces of an essay’s argument together, and making the reader think. But the road to these goals can take many different directions.
There are a lot of options as to what to include in your conclusion. Here are a few to consider:
A connection to your hook.
If you began your essay with a hook to get your reader’s interest, you can tie back into it at the end. Did you start off with a question? Provide the answer. Did you tell the beginning of a story? Let them know the ending.
Using a hook is a great tactic to start a paper, and tying it into your conclusion artfully is an easy way to end your paper.
An answer to the question “So what?”
When you can’t think of what to say, pretend to be your reader and ask yourself, “So what?” When the reader reaches the end of your essay, they should completely understand your essay’s purpose. Why should they care about the argument you’ve been making?
Take your main idea and ask, “So what?” Then keep digging deeper until you have the ultimate takeaway from what you’ve been trying to express.
A solution. Or a challenge to the reader to think of a solution.
If your essay involves a problem or an issue that needs to be solved, you can end with an answer to that problem. If it seems unsolvable, you can end with options that might get people closer to solving the issue.
A poignant quote.
If there’s a powerful quote that adds substance to your essay, feel free to add it. But it has to be relevant and tie together your concluding thoughts (and of course, give credit to the author).
What should I avoid in my conclusion?
You don’t want to put all of your hard work into a powerful introduction and fantastic body paragraphs, just to tank it in the end with a conclusion that goes way off course.
Be sure to avoid these common errors:
Repeating your introduction as your conclusion.
Although it’s good practice to revisit your thesis statement or main ideas in your conclusion, make sure you rephrase your thoughts and present them in a slightly different light. You want to connect to your opening and reflect on it, but you don’t want it to be exactly the same.
Introducing a completely new idea for the first time in the conclusion.
After you’ve organized your ideas and made your claims, it’s very confusing to the reader if you throw in a random new idea at the end of the essay. It may seem like an exciting twist, but really, it’s just poor organization. Keep your focus on the main argument throughout the essay, especially when you are wrapping it all up.
Using boring phrases to start your conclusion.
In summary… In conclusion… These phrases (and others like these) have no place in a conclusion paragraph. Let your ideas and creative wording guide the reader to realize you’re wrapping up your thoughts.
Changing your tone.
The tone of your essay should be consistent throughout. If you’re very scientific in your entire essay, don’t end it in a really conversational tone. If your tone is very friendly and laid-back, don’t get extremely serious and judgmental in your conclusion. Whoever you are in the introduction, that voice should be clearly echoed in the conclusion.
Be succinct. This is not the time to start listing random thoughts or coming up with supporting details that really should have already been mentioned in previous paragraphs. Nor is it the time to restate the same idea over and over.
There are a lot of things to consider when concluding your essay. You want to hit the highlights, make people think, and leave them with a positive impression of what they have just read. You only have one chance to wrap things up nicely for your reader. Make your conclusion succinct, thought-provoking and powerful.
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