An essay or any text consists of individual smaller pieces of information composed together to form a bigger piece of information. Transition words make an essay or any text easier to follow. There are transition words, transition phrases, and even transition paragraphs in an essay.

Why Transition Words are used?

Transition words and phrases connect individual sentences or ideas to make them more meaningful and easier to comprehend. So, when we jump from one sentence/idea to another, the flow of ideas is logical and smooth. Transition Words are usually placed at the beginning of a sentence or paragraph in an essay or any fictional or academic writing.

It is to be noted that an entire paragraph can also be used as a transition to connect other paragraphs, especially if the text is very long.

Without any further delay, let us dive right into the types of transition words and how to use them.

Types of transition words/phrases (Quick guide)

There are mainly 4 types of transition words/phrases, namely additive, adversative, causal, and sequential.

A quick overview of these 4 is as below:

Additive transition

adds or references new information. E.g., Also, Additionally, In addition to, etc.

Adversative transitions

indicate a disagreement between pieces of information. E.g., However, In contrast, etc.

Causal transition

shows a cause-and-effect relationship between pieces of information. E.g., Since, Due to, Unless, etc.

Sequential transitions

make the sequence of information clearer. E.g., First of all, To start with, First/second/third, etc.


Transition words/phrases in detail (with examples)

A more detailed list of each type of transition word is as below:

1. Additive transitions

1.1 Addition

Without transition: I was going to the movie. I planned to meet my friend on the way.

With transition: I was going to the movie. Additionally, I planned to meet my friend on the way.

More transition words for addition: besides, in fact, indeed, furthermore, moreover, additionally, and, also, Not only A but also B, both A and B

1.2 Introduction

Without transition: My professor is a maniac. He failed one of my classmates for being late in a class by 1 minute.

With transition: My professor is a maniac. For instance, he failed one of my classmates for being late in a class by 1 minute.

More transition words for introduction: such as, like, particularly, including, as an illustration, for example, for instance, in particular, to illustrate, especially, notably

1.3 Clarification:

Without transition: Ahmad has three friends in college. (They are Mohammad, John, and Sara, but their name is not mentioned yet)

With transition: Ahmad has three friends in college. Namely, Mohammad, John, and Sara.

More transition words for clarification: namely, specifically, more precisely, that is (to say), in other words

1.4 Reference

Without transition: Only 6% of students scored 5/5 in AP Physics 1. We can conclude that it is pretty tough.

With transition: The fact that only 6% of students scored 5/5 in AP Physics 1, we can conclude that it is pretty tough.

More transition words for Reference:  the fact that A, considering A, regarding A, in regard to A, as for A, concerning A, on the subject of A

1.5 Similarity

Without transition: Carol tried hard in calculus, and she passed the exam. Diana studied hard, and she also passed.

With transition: Carol tried hard in calculus, and she passed the exam. Likewise, Diana studied hard, and she also passed.

More transition words for Similarity:  likewise, similarly, in like manner, in the same way, by the same token, equally


2. Adversative transition

2.1 Emphasis

Without transition: Yasir is the best student in our class. He scored an A+ in all the subjects.

With transition: Yasir is the best student in our class. Indeed, he scored an A+ in all the subjects.

More transition words for Emphasis: above all, indeed, most/more importantly

2.2 Concession

Without transition: Dana failed the calculus class. She had studied hard. 

With transition: Dana failed the calculus class even though she had studied hard. 

More transition words for Concession: even so, even though, nonetheless, nevertheless, on the other hand, admittedly, despite A, notwithstanding A, (and) still, though, granted A, although, in spite of A, regardless (of A), (and) yet

2.3 Replacement

E.g., 1: Maradona is regarded as one of the best footballers so far, if not the best.

E.g., 2: Give me $100 for my work or at least $75.

More transition words for Replacement: or at least, or rather, instead, if not

2.4 Conflict

Without transition: Oliver is a good student. He failed in calculus.

With transition: Oliver is a good student. However, he failed in calculus.

More transition words for Conflict: however, although, though, but, equally, by way of contrast, in contrast, while, when in fact, on the other hand, and yet, whereas, conversely, whereas

2.5 Dismissal

E.g., 1: USA and Germany are both strong teams capable of winning tomorrow’s match. In any case, spectators will enjoy it.

More transition words for Dismissal: regardless, either way, whatever the case, in any event, in either event, in any case, in either case, at any rate, all the same


3. Causal transition

3.1 Condition

E.g., 1: Diana will pass even if she gets only 40% in the final exam.

E.g., 2: Being the only participant left in the race, Danny will be the winner provided he finishes the race.

More transition words for Condition: even if, even when, only if, only when, on the condition that, provided that, in case, in the event that, as long as, so long as, unless, given that, being that, in the case that, in that case, in all other cases, if not, otherwise

3.2 Consequence

Without transition: Daisy did not study. She failed.

With transition: Daisy did not study. Therefore, she failed.

More transition words for Consequence: therefore, because (of x), as a result (of x), for this reason, in view of x, as, owing to x, due to (the fact that), since, consequently, in consequence, as a consequence, hence, thus, so (that), accordingly, so much (so) that, under the/such circumstances, if so

3.3 Purpose

E.g., 1: I have studied hard in order to pass the exam.

E.g., 2: I was failing in the Statistics class. With this in mind, I started studying very hard.

More transition words for Purpose: to, in order to, in order that, for the purpose of, in the hope that, so that, to the end that, with this in mind, so as to, so that, to ensure (that)

4. Sequential transition

4.1 Initiation

E.g., 1: To begin with, I would do the MCQ section in this exam.

E.g., 2: Initially, the earth was lifeless, covered with dust.

More transition words for Initiation: in the first place, initially, first of all, to begin with, at first

4.2 Enumeration

Without transition: There are two problems that I face in Physics. I am not able to solve the questions. I am not able to focus for a longer time. 

With transition: There are two problems that I face in Physics. First, I am not able to solve the questions. Second, I am not able to focus for a longer time. 

More transition words for Enumeration: first, second, third, fourth, etc

4.3 Summation

E.g., 1: As previously stated, you can not do well in essay writing if you can not research the topic well and write it logically.

E.g., 2: Overall, the 1988 Olympics have been the worst so far for the USA. The medals won were the least, and also, there were several cases of doping.

More transition words for Summation: as previously stated/mentioned, in summary, as I have argued, overall, as has been mentioned, to summarize, briefly, given these points, in view of x, as has been noted, in conclusion, in sum, altogether, in short.

4.4 Conclusion

E.g., 1: To conclude, the USA has always done well in sports. Be it tennis, soccer, football, or athletics.

E.g., 2: As a final point, luck plays a significant factor that decides if a small business will fail or succeed.

More transition words for Conclusion: to conclude (with), as a final point, eventually, at last, last but not least, finally, lastly.

4.5 Continuation

E.g., 1: I had a good game of tennis. Afterward, I took a nice bath.

E.g., 2: The Lion grew very old, lost all his teeth, and became very weak. Eventually, it died.

More transition words for Continuation: subsequently, previously, eventually, next, before x, afterward, after x, then

4.6 Resumption

E.g., 1: To return to the primary goal of this essay, I will repeat- hard work never goes in vain.

E.g., 2: To resume my argument, a friend in need is a friend indeed; I can say that we should always have trustworthy friends.

More transition words for Resumption: to return to, returning to, to resume, at any rate

Check this article on transition words for further reading. (opens in a new tab)

Final thoughts

In this article, we learned what transition words are and how to use them in any text. We learned about the four major types of transition words and also their subtypes. Plenty of examples were also included to make them clearer. 

If you need any help with essays writing or paraphrasing, we have the best essay writers/helpers who can help you right away. Please get in touch with us on WhatsApp to get started.

  • Kumar Hemendra

    I am the editor in chief at MEB and ensure the content on our website is of high quality. With 16 years of experience in this field, I myself have written 500+ articles for several educational platforms, including MEB. I am an expert in essay writing and the US and UK education systems. I oversee the online tutoring and homework help businesses of MEB.

    I am a big fan of language, literature, art, and culture. I love reading and writing, and whenever I am not working, you may find me reading some piece of literature. I love animals and am an animal rights activist.