12 Mar 2013

How to Write an Essay: List of Useful Phrases, Complex Connectives

Useful words and complex vocabulary for essays in all subjects from GCSE B-A* up to A-Level A* grade or University. Find a checklist to use with this list here.

How to understand what questions are asking you to do.

1 In Addition
(1) besides this (as well as this), (2) furthermore (also), (3) also, (4) as well as, (5) on top of this, (6) foremost (most important, e.g. the foremost reason for the outbreak of war was...), (7) firstly, secondly, thirdly, (8) firstly, lastly, finally, (9) likewise (in the same way).

2 To Give an Example
(1) For example, (2) for instance, (3) in particular, particularly (e.g. particularly important, was...), (4) specifically (e.g. Hitler bombed St Paul’s Cathedral specifically to destroy British morale), (5) to illustrate (e.g. Churchill understood the importance of morale. This is illustrated by the fact that he diverted firefighters from burning homes in order to save the Cathedral), (6) this is shown by (e.g. this is shown by the fact that...), (7) to demonstrate, to prove (e.g. to demonstrate this, we can...), (8) such as (e.g. words such as [quote], [quote], [quote] create the effect of’)



3 To Show the Reason Why, Cause and Effect
(1) since, (2) because, (3) because of, due to (because of, e.g. due to the effects of erosion, the coastline appears...), (4) as (because, e.g. as most people in the West have free access to food, obesity is reaching epidemic proportions), (5) by this, (6) through this, (7) as a result of this.

4 To Show Result or Effect of Something
(1) consequently (i.e. as a result of this, e.g. consequently, the earth will eventually crash into the sun), (2) hence (as a result, e.g. hence the earth will be destroyed), (3) so, (4) therefore, (5) thus (in this way, e.g. thus, the earth will fall into the sun and the moon will fall into the earth.) 

5 To Express an Opinion (for an English essay: Level 7+ and A-A*)
(1) this suggests, (2) this makes us feel that, (3) this makes it clear that, (4) create the effect (mood/tone) of (e.g. the author/these words create(s) the effect that) (6) seems, this seems to, it seems that, (7) we could say that, you could argue that, it could be said that, (8) we could interpret this in two ways (9) the author sets up (or ‘builds up’) the idea of (9) in this character, we see... (10) it could be argued that



6 To Prove Your Argument
(1) to attest, to prove, e.g. this is attested by, (2) to be evidenced, to prove, e.g. this is evidenced by, (3) to testify, where a person swears that a thing is so, e.g. people at the time testified that,' (4) to be endorsed, (5) to be supported, e.g. this view is endorsed (supported) by other evidence...’, to be shown, (7) to be proven, e.g. ‘this is shown (proven) by', (7) to establish, to be established, to be well-proven, ‘it has been established that, this evidence establishes that...’
(1) On one hand, on the other hand, (2) in comparison, (3) similarly, likewise (4) in contrast, (5) but, (6) however, (7) although, (8) yet, nevertheless, despite this, (even though there are things to the contrary) (9) even so, all the same.

8 Time after, before, currently, during, eventually, at present, now, then, before this, meanwhile (or, ‘simultaneously’ or ‘at the same time’), eventually, suddenly, formerly (previously), immediately, as soon as, initially (at first), later, once (e.g. ‘once [something] then [something]’), subsequently (after this), subsequent (those that came after, e.g. subsequent Kings took a more aggressive approach), hitherto (before this), henceforth (after this), 

9 To Summarize
Overall, to summarize, in summary, in conclusion, to sum up, briefly, in brief.

10 Making Judements: dominant, to dominate, (the most powerful, most prominent, most obvious) e.g. the dominant theme is, e.g. Germany was the dominant power in Europe from’
(most/more/least/less) important, importantly
(most/more/least/less) significant, significantly (most meaningful, interesting or important)
the prevailing attitude was (the attitude held by the majority)
absolute = total, complete
exactly, roughly, almost, most
demean - reduce in worth or character, usually verbally, e.g. ‘The men demean Curley’s wife, describing her as a ‘tart’.’
diminish - make something seem smaller


magnifiy, make something seem bigger, ‘The benefits of organic food have been magnified somewhat.’
mentioned: e.g. ‘it is mentioned in [source] that,’
referred: e.g. ‘This fact is referred to in [source]’
explicitly, clearly, plainly shown, e.g. ‘Person explicitly said that’
literally (i.e. it actually, really happened, not a metaphor)
exactly (precisely)
several (many), numerous (very many), endlesslimitlessinfinitely greater (smaller), e.g. ‘The issue of poverty in the UK is infinitely smaller since the introduction of the Welfare State.’
various, e.g. various sources show that [x is true]

11 Writing about What Other People Said / Wrote
(1) to voice = to speak an idea, e.g. ‘Crooks voices the prevailing view of the 1930s, that life is hard and there’s no hope for anyone in it.’
(2) person expressed the opinion that


The author, , is an Oxford graduate, outstanding-rated English Language and Literature teacher and of ages 10-18 in the British education system. In 2012, she was nominated for Pearson's Teaching Awards. As a private tutor, she raises grades often from C to A. Her writing is also featured in The Huffington Post. She offers private tuition in the Haywards Heath area, West Sussex.