Transition Words & Phrases - Make Your Writing Smooth

Transition Words & Phrases - Make Your Writing Smooth
Table of Contents
  1. Transition Words & Phrases - Make Your Writing Smooth
  2. Transition Words – Why to Use?
  3. Main Types of Transitions
  4. Additive Group
  5. Adversative Group
  6. Causal (not Casual) Group
  7. Sequential Group
  8. List of Transition Words
  9. Mistakes to Avoid Using Transitions

"Transition words and introductory phrases exist in any language. Such elements help effectively start your long essay, smoothly link parts of the sentence, thoughts and ideas with each other."

Transition phrases and words help to give your writing emotional and semantic coloring. Additionally, they make each idea more expressive and rich; knowing introductory phrases will be useful to those who are working on essay.

Do you agree? Finally, they will help the beginner to improve his writing skills - as a result, compositions will be interesting to read all the time. We will discuss functions of a transition word, give an overview of the most used phrases. Practically, these words do not play grammatical or semantic role in the sentence. Such expressions strengthen the emotionality and expressiveness of your writing; if they are well-chosen, the meaning of the sentence will not change. It is important to use such phrase when you write; you can use them to present contrast, addition, and to make an effective conclusion.

Introductory words and expressions should attach connectivity of ideas in an essay. Select the word or phrase you need depending on the function and style of your writing. You can pick either a word to show contrast, signalize conclusion, emphasis, analysis, or reason in a long paper. If you are answering exam questions, there is no point in using long and meaningless phrases. Delivering a speech at the ceremony, do not forget to add colors to your speech. For instance, performing writing assignment, it is not superfluous to use a couple of transitions.

If you write a paper yourself without professional help, consider using transitional words.  

Transition Words – Why to Use?

Writing a long essay is not an easy task - it is not just about expressing your thoughts, ideas persuasively. You are to make sure that parts are smoothly linked. Logical bridge should be between paragraphs; you need to show contrast where necessary and make your work literate. All main points are to be set out in a logical order - to put it briefly, an essay should be interesting, emotional, bright. Finally, the main task of a composition is to draw attention to the discussed topic. You are to make it understood and remembered. That's why you should approach writing an essay creatively (to a reasonable limit); transition phrases and words will help you build a logically clear structure of the essay. Use right words within right context. It can connect every statement.

"Transition words are like road signs. They help the reader understand the direction of your thought."

Do you know how to write a winning graduation speech with transitions? Do not make your speech be left without attention! Introductory words help make the text related, understandable to the reader. These are auxiliary means to connect separate sentences into a single semantic whole. They are needed to write essays, letters, articles and various art texts. Transition words and phrases help convey the sequence of events, express their relationship on any occasion, etc. Let’s discuss what categories of transition words exist and what functions they perform. Find more information further.

Main Types of Transitions

Different types of these elements exist. Each of them is used within specific cases performing specific functions. The main categories of transitional expressions are addictive transitions, adversative elements, casual, and sequential words. Detailed discussion of each category of a list is presented below. Read to learn more what part can you use and where.

Additive Group

These words are used to express addition, reference, and similarity. They are applied to introduce a statement, clarify the point at the beginning of your writing. They link a statement with an idea that goes next smoothly. Use additive elements to avoid a reader jumping from one thought to another; they line up all parts of your composition. Add each argument and fact smoothly.

  • Addition
  • Introduction
  • Reference
  • Similarity
  • Identification
  • Clarification


I love to read research papers. Moreover, I really enjoy receiving large amounts of homework from my instructors.

Adversative Group

To conflict some statements or make emphasis, you should use adversative words. They are generally applied for concession, dismissal, and replacement. Whether the theme of your writing is, adversative words will make it more unified and emotional. They place emphasis on the necessary argument.

  • Conflict
  • Emphasis
  • Concession
  • Dismissal
  • Replacement


I love my dog; however, I hate it when he eats the roll of toilet paper.

Causal (not Casual) Group

This kind of elements is relevant for cause and effect essays. They allow smooth moving of arguments. The main function of causal expression is to show a consequence or make a contrary - in such a way, you are to prove a purpose in a more effective way.

  • Cause/Reason
  • Effect/Result
  • Purpose
  • Dismissal
  • Consequence


Romeo told Juliet that her spaghetti sauce was terrible; as a result, Romeo now cooks for himself.

Sequential Group

These are used to show continuation, to sum up your writing, and to make resumption. Using sequential words is the best way to summarize your writing; they will make your essay sound complete and persuasive. Sequential elements are commonly used to conclude a paper.

  • Numerical
  • Continuation
  • Conclusion
  • Digression
  • Resumption
  • Summation


The data show, drivers are more likely to cause accidents when they are talking on their cell phones. Therefore, Minnesota should enact a law banning drivers from using cell phones.

List of Transition Words

Transitional words lead the reader into the idea of the writing. They denote a logical connection between the original thought and the final one, thereby contributing into the text smoothness and integrity. As road signs, transitions help the reader to easily navigate the text. You may wonder how much the text with the correct use of transition words can improve. Such phrases act as glue, holding together thoughts and ideas. They help smoothly and naturally guide you and your reader from one part of the text to another. Adding just a few transitions helps to indicate the relationship of different parts of the paragraph and improves “smoothness” of the text. They connect everything.

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Mistakes to Avoid Using Transitions

Transitional words improve the quality of the text. Used in a wrong way, they can make your composition sound unprofessionally. Below are three mistakes that should be avoided using transitions.

  • Make sure the logical relationships established by transitions are clear. Such words serve to link sentences and ideas, and their use will be incorrect if the communication is unclear or missing at all.
  • Avoid excessive use of transition words. Such phrases should guide the reader, but excessive use of them can have the opposite effect and make the text confusing.
  • Avoid mistakes that can occur using expressions. Like any other word class, transitions should be used carefully without creating grammatical errors. The most common mistakes are incomplete sentences and splicing of sentences with a comma.

If you follow our instructions and recommendations, you will create a really good piece of writing. Each sentence/ idea will be smoothly linked to - whether you write a comparison and contrast essay or a long summary, be on the wave!

Avoid mistakes with our tips on writing a successful college essay!