92 Essay Transition Words to Know with Examples

Grammarly is a software that helps you write better and faster. It is a digital writing assistant that checks and improves your writing. You can use Grammarly on different platforms and devices, and customize it to your needs and preferences. Grammarly is a smart and friendly companion that supports you in your writing journey. The following text was found on the Grammarly site. I recommend the use of Grammarly. By Matt Ellis Updated on November 7, 2023


    Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.


  • Students will be able to use transition words and phrases to improve the coherence and flow of their essays.


    • Introduction: Explain to the students what transition words and phrases are and why they are important for essay writing. Give some examples of transition words and phrases for different types of transitions, such as addition, contrast, cause and effect, etc. Ask the students to identify the transition words and phrases in the text from the Grammarly site and explain how they help the reader follow the writer’s ideas.
    • Practice: Divide the students into pairs or small groups and give them a list of transition words and phrases. Ask them to write transition sentences using the words and phrases from the list. They can use the text from the Grammarly site as a source of ideas or topics. Have them share their transition sentences with the class and discuss how they improve the clarity and coherence of the writing.
    • Application: Ask the students to write a short essay on a topic of their choice, using transition words and phrases to connect their paragraphs and sentences. They can use the rubric for assessing essay writing to guide their writing process and self-evaluation. Have them exchange their essays with a peer and give feedback based on the rubric. Have them revise their essays based on the feedback and submit them for grading.
    • Closure: Review the main points of the lesson and ask the students to reflect on what they learned and how they can apply it to their future writing. Ask them to share some examples of transition words and phrases that they used or learned in their essays.

Essay writing

Writing an essay can be a daunting task, especially when 

it comes to transitioning between different ideas and topics. Abruptly switching topics in essays can be jarring; however, transition words can smooth the 

change for the convenience of the reader. Moreover, you can use essay transition words to start a paragraph, sentence, or clause more naturally. Additionally, essay transition words can connect new information to the previous statement so you don’t have to say everything at once.

What are essay transition words?

In general, transition words and phrases bridge the gap between two topics whose connection isn’t obvious. Transition words and phrases like however, although, likewise, and on the contrary cue the reader that a change is coming so they know to expect it. The type of transition word or phrase signals which type of change is coming. For example, transition words like therefore show a cause-and-effect relationship, while transition words like in conclusion introduce a summary or wrap-up. Often, conjunctive adverbs work well as transition words.

Essay transition words are no different from other types of transition words. They are often the same words and phrases used in other pieces of writing, just used for all types of essay, such as an informative essay or a narrative essay.

How to use essay transition words

Transition words and phrases are used to make transition sentences, which either contain two opposing topics in the same sentence or join together the opposing sentences or paragraphs that come before and after the transition sentence. Essay transition words aren’t necessary for every sentence; you need them only when a shift in topic is so pronounced that it interrupts the writing flow.

For example, consider this example, which doesn’t use transition words:

The GPS told us to go left. We went right.

Although those two sentences are grammatically correct, the abrupt change in topic is a bit jarring to readers. Some may feel like they need to reread the passage because they’re worried they missed something. That’s where transition words come in handy.

The GPS told us to go left. However, we went right.

The transition word however acts as a signal to the reader to prepare for a change in topic. When the reader sees transition words like this, they know to expect the switch, so it’s not so jarring.

Here are some of the most common and useful essay transition words:

  1. Addition: Additionally, also, furthermore, moreover, too, next, besides, equally important.
  2. Comparison: Similarly, likewise, in the same way, in comparison.
  3. Contrast: However, nevertheless, on the other hand, on the contrary, yet, whereas, conversely, at the same time, still, despite that, in contrast, even so.
  4. Emphasis: Above all, indeed, truly, of course, certainly, surely, in fact, in truth, again, besides,

92 transition words examples

Essay transition word list for contradictions

  • above all
  • alternatively
  • anyway
  • as much as
  • conversely
  • despite
  • however
  • instead
  • nevertheless
  • nonetheless
  • notwithstanding
  • on the contrary
  • on the other hand
  • otherwise
  • rather
  • regardless
  • still
  • unlike

Essay transition word list for additions

  • accordingly
  • additionally
  • also
  • besides
  • comparatively
  • coupled with
  • equally important
  • explicitly
  • further
  • furthermore
  • in addition
  • in the same way
  • likewise
  • moreover
  • similarly
  • too
  • typically
  • understandably

Essay transition word list for introducing examples

  • for example
  • for instance
  • in particular / particularly
  • namely
  • specifically
  • to illustrate

Essay transition word list for conditions and cause and effect

  • as a result
  • as long as
  • because of
  • consequently
  • due to
  • for fear of
  • for this reason
  • hence
  • in effect
  • in the event of
  • since
  • subsequently
  • thereby
  • therefore
  • thus
  • under these/those circumstances
  • whenever
  • while

Essay transition word list for extra clarification

  • after all
  • by all means
  • certainly
  • especially
  • in fact
  • in general
  • in other words
  • incidentally
  • indeed
  • markedly
  • naturally
  • notably
  • of course
  • predictably
  • significantly
  • to clarify
  • undoubtedly

Essay transition word list for summarizing

  • briefly / in brief
  • in conclusion
  • in summary/summation
  • in the end
  • to summarize
  • ultimately

Essay transition word list for time relations

  • at the same time
  • in the meantime
  • lately
  • meanwhile
  • now

Essay transition word list for series and sequences

  • finally
  • first, second, third, etc.
  • last
  • next
  • then

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