The use of connectors is essential in the organisation of our speech and writing. It is important to understand a couple of things before we take a closer look at individual differences between cohesive devises.
- the difference between connectives and conjunctions. Many cohesive devices can be used as both a connective or conjunction, depending on how they are used.
- Connective = joins two separate sentences
- Conjunction = joins two clauses in a single sentence
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Language learners must be very clear on the functions of connectors so that they can use them effectively (note that some connectors can have several meanings)
|And, also, as well, in addition, besides, above all|
|Such as, for example, like, for instance, as follows:|
|Also, furthermore, moreover, above all, not only… but also|
|Otherwise, in other words, then, in that case|
|Firstly, secondly, thirdly, lastly, next, after, to start with, to finish,|
|However, but, although, whereas, despite, in spite of, even though, though|
|Similarly, equally, likewise, in the same way|
|So, therefore, as a result, because of this, consequently, thus, hence, in that case|
|In conclusion, to sum up, in brief, therefore, to summarise, to finish off, on balance, in a nutshell, all in all, in the end|
|STATING THE OBVIOUS|
|Obviously, clearly, naturally, of course, surely, after all|
´However´ can be used to begin a sentence but it MUST be followed by a comma, after the comma we put the sentence.
However, he didn´t arrive on time for the meeting.
However can also be used as a conjunctive adverb, it shows contrast:
´However´ can be used to join two simple sentences to make a compound sentence.
He is very busy, however, he will find time to go to the meeting.
But is used to connect two dependent clauses. You MUST use a comma before it
He said no more, but expressed his resignation to the outcome of the situation.
Although is normally used at the beginning of a sentence. But it MUST be followed by a full clause
Although he works very hard, he isn´t very productive
He isn´t very productive although he works very hard
Though can go at the befinning or end of a sentence and has the same meaning an although.
Though he works very hard, he isn´t very productive
He isnt very productive, he works very hard though
Whereas has a similar meaning to on the other hand. We use it after a comma.
I love eating healthily, whereas my brother eats loads of junk food.
Despite/in spite of
Despite is always followed by a noun or the genund form of the verb (present participle). It has the same meaning as in spite of or although
Despite the weather, the BBQ will go ahead
Despite it raining, the BBQ will go ahead
(NEGATIVE) Despite it not being sunny, the BBQ will go ahead
´Also´ is to show similarity or something in common. We normally use it in positive sentences and has a similar meaning to and or in addition
He is academic. He also likes doing sport at weekends.
He is very clever. He is also very active.
´Too´is to show similarity or something in common. We normally use it in positive sentences and has the same meaning as also
I went to the cinema. He went to the cinema yesterday too.
Because introduces clauses of cause and reason. It connects a main clause with a subordinate clause. Synonyms of because can be since and as.
Everyone went out to the bar because it was my birthday.
Because it was my birthday, we went out to the bar.
We use ´because of´ plus a noun or the gerund form of the verb. It is a phrase that means as a result of
Because of the cost, we didn´t sign up for the course.
We use ´due to´plus a noun or the gerund form of the verb. It means because of
Due to his nastiness, we didn´t like him
Due to not having time, we dind´t study a lot
On account of
´On account of´introduces the explanation or reason for something, it means because of or be the reason for
He didn´t get the job on account of his lack of creativity.
We use so as a subordinating conjunction to introduce clauses of result or decision and has the same meaning as thus, hence or therefore
You made the correct decision, so we will go along with the idea
Therefore has a very similar meaning to so, it must be used between a semi-colon and a comma.
My dad supports Aston Villa; therefore, I support them too
Furthermore has a similar meaning to in addition. We use it at the beginning of sentences.
Furthermore, it is easier to learn phrasal verbs this way.
Moreover is the same as in addition or furthermore. But it is used after a semi colon (;)
He didn´t really prepare for the exam well; moreover, he arrived late on the day and missed the first exercise.
Nevertheless is a synonym of however. You need to use it at the beginning of a sentence
I didn’t like what she was telling me. Nevertheless, I accepted her decision.
Otherwise has a similar meaning to or else. But it can also be different or differently
We should go out this evening, otherwise we will not get to see Sam on his birthday.
It means differently here:
I think that it is the greatest group of all time, but my father thinks otherwise.
Passive ways of improving the use of connectors can include:
- reading frequently
- watching TV with subtitles
To practice connectives, why not look at our grammar exercises
We hope that you enjoyed the post. They will help you with your writing. Here are some other posts about writing.
B2 First Certificate