There are many features of texts which help the reader understand how the information in the text is organised.
Text organisers or transition signals are the terms that cover a wide range of words and phrases which make a text easier to understand. Let's look at a selection through examples.
- Adding information
- In addition to his house in Paris, he has a villa in Italy and a castle in Scotland.
- Not only did he turn up late, (but) he also forgot his books.
- He's a photographer and also writes books.
- The whole report is badly written. Moreover, it's inaccurate.
- He won't mind your being late - besides, it's hardly your fault.
- I suggest we use La -Ram as our main suppliers - they're good and furthermore they're cheap.
- The lamps were absolutely beautiful and what's more, the children had made them themselves.
- We missed the train, and on top of that we had to wait for two hours for the next one.
- Four of our players were ill, and to make matters worse, our main scorer had broken his ankle.
- No, I don't work. In fact, I've never had a job.
- Contrasting information
- The identity of the attacker is known to the police. However no name has been released.
- There are serious problems in the country. Nonetheless (Nevertheless), we feel this is a good time to return.
- It rained every single day of our holiday - but we had a good time all the same.
- The kids walked home by themselves, although they knew that it was dangerous.
- While I fully understand your point of view, I do also have some sympathy with Sarah's.
- Even though he left school at 16, he still managed to become the most famous actor.
- Despite repeated assurances that the product is safe, many people have stopped buying it.
- I know you don't like her, but you still don't have to be so rude to her.
- "Didn't you find the film exciting?" "On the contrary, I nearly fell asleep half way through it!"
- I prefer city life as opposed to country life.
- He must be about fifty, whereas his wife looks about twenty.
- Their economy has expanded enormously, while ours, in contrast, has declined.
- Comparing information
- Cars must stop at red traffic lights: similarly, bicycles should stop too.
- The author has made an insightful translation. Also, she has captured the poetic tone of the original piece.
- Ordering information by time
- At first I thought he was joking but then I realized he meant it.
- Trade opened between Europe and Japan; after that artists were exposed to Asian culture for the first time.
- Trade opened between Europe and Japan. Before that artists had had little exposure to Asian culture.
- Trade opened between Europe and Japan; since then, the art world has done much to acknowledge this new partnership.
- You have to fry the garlic. Next, add the ginger.
- In accepting this award, I would like to thank the producer, the director, the scriptwriter and, lastly, the film crew.
- After the trade embargoes were abolished, eventually both parties realised the benefits of a trade partnership.
- Gradually, she realized that he wasn't telling her the truth.
- After months of looking he finally found a job.
- Jim fails to provide evidence for her argument: as a result this text is flawed.
- He's an expert in his field, and is paid accordingly.
- No control group was included in the experiment; thus, the conclusion drawn is rather ambiguous.
- Her mother was Italian, hence her name - Laura.
- I spent most of my money in the first week and consequently (as a consequence) had very little to eat by the end of the holiday.
- We were unable to get funding and therefore had to abandon the project.
- The government does not intend to cause any further provocation. For that reason, all troops have been withdrawn.
- Making generalisations
- Generally (broadly) speaking, it's quite a good school.
- We have our bad times but on the whole we're fairly happy.
- There are a few small things that I don't like about my job, but by and large it's very enjoyable.
- To a large/some/a certain extent, this has been an encouraging year for the company.
- I'd better write it down, otherwise I'll forget it.
- Smith tends to use emotive language, indeed, this makes her case highly persuasive.
- Exemplifying information
- Offices can easily become more environmentally-friendly by, for example, using recycled paper.
- The chef required many ingredients to prepare her banquet; for instance, fresh herbs and many types of mushrooms.
- In conclusion, I would like to thank our guest speaker.
- In summary, the dietary needs of patients are important and should be the domain for trained nurses.
- Finally, each of the memory systems operates in tandem to allow learning and cognition to occur.
Of course, this list is not exhaustive, but it should give a few ideas about transition words you can use and recognise. Please do share with me the ones you often use or find in texts.
I hope you've enjoyed it.
Photo source: debrabell.com
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