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Cohesion in Academic Writing

Good writing needs to be as clear as possible so that the reader can easily
follow sentences, ideas and details .. In academic writing, it is important to
.present an argument logically and cohesively. One of the most important
aspects is to show the connections and relationships between ideas. Using
particular types 'of words and phrases, known as 'cohesive devices', to link
individual sentences and parts of sentences.. helps the reader to follow the
movement of ideas without any difficulty. They help the writing to flow
naturally, without unnecessary repetition ..

1. Referring backwards
The reader needs to know who and what is being referred to in a
passaqe of text But it's not good to repeat the same phrase too often,
so we use words such as


it, he, she, they etc.(pronouns)
this, that (demonstratives),








to refer back to people Ithings mentioned earlier in the text
2. Looking forwards.
We often use words and phrases warning the reader to expect new
information. This helps make a smooth transition from one point to'
another. Such phrases include: the following, as follows, below, next,
Example (i): The following dates have been proposed for the
forthcoming election: September 8, September 15 and 3
Example (ii) The results of the analysis of voter confidence are.
shown in Table 1 below,
Example (iii) The next issue to be discussed is the influence of .
the media on voter confidence in the government.
3. Repetition and avoiding repetition

To keep the reader aware of the focus of attention, we sometimes
repeat the same word or phrase. But we also try to avoid too much
repetition by using words and phrases with similar meaning
Example: The government's election campaign commenced with a
media. blitz outlining a series of election promises. This beginning to the
campaign sparked numerous media commentaries.

my fellow Americans: Ask not what your country can do for you ask what you can do for your country. so (to add. .governments permit the production government should help in preventing this disease because and sale of alcohol. show cause and effect) although.e. Overusing connectives It is important not to use too many . whilst. not always at the start of sentences. because. to join ideas andsentences. Transitional devices/Connecting words Academic writing usually deals with complex ideas. but. the they permit the production and government should help in sale of alcohol. notice what you have repeated. The prevent liver cirrhosis -. So. what you haveomitted and what you have not expressed clearly.b Missing subordinators Subordinators (although. because. Repeated/parallel structures Repeated (or parallel) grammatical'structures statements are closely related. connectives and to vary their position in sentences i.J. To enable the reader to follow your thoughts and the connections between them. government resources are limited .) Common errors Explanation and suggested version .4.. are limited. Nevertheless. whilst (to qualify. . they need to be clearly arid smoothly linked. while) cannotbe used with only one clause. o o and. signal concurrency) (The list of transitional signals is attached 'in the handout) 5. They join two clauses together Examples of common errors . we use a number of connecting words and phrases. . contrast. can and do in the last part of the sentence . 'they might be able to prevent liver cirrhosis.) Example (ii): As President Kennedy once said: 'And so. resources. show cause and effect. (Notice how what is repeated here. such as the following few examples: . they might be able to drinking.thus emphasising his point. however.However. Government preventing this disease. Example: If people stopped Example: If people stopped drinking. you.' (Notice how Kennedy changed the order of ask. o o often indicate that Example (i): When editing your writing.

but also to give a security. Although she felt sick ~ Faulty parallel structures Example: Although she felt sick. to provide and to give.role not only to provide a place-to important role not only to provide a live. _but also'.Example: She went to work. she went to work. In this case.. You need to use parallel forms with the expression 'Not only . . sense of security. Example: Houses play an importantExample: Houses play an . but also for giving a sense of place to live.'.

. accordingly as a result as a' consequence the first. . final an example of (+ noun) such as (+ noun) therefore consequently hence thus so . Me-aning/ Transttion . " Coordinati'ng' Siibo..---Transition-5i gnals ---.. Ft1nction Phrases To introduce an additional idea in addition on the other hand in contrast To introduce an opposite idea or contrast .. finally ._.---.rdinating Conjunctions Conjunctive .--~---'------.-.----. I To introduce an example for example for instance To introduce a.'.' .. another (+ noun) an additional (+ noun) although though even though whereas otherwise To introduce a choice or: alternative To introduce a restatement or explanation ..--. in fact or in spite of (+ noun) despite (+ noun) if unless that is indeed To list in order first.--.---._. second. last. ---.. second. \ I ¢onjunction5~' Adverbs furih ermore moreover besides also too and however nevertheless instead but yet still nonetheless while ' . third..conclusion or summary clearly in brief in conclusion indeed in short in summary To introduce a result Others . etc. last. third next.----. the next.-.