Common Transition Terms Table

Knowing these groups can help you in process of elimination. If two or three words from the same group are answer choices, almost always they’re wrong, so you should initially cross them out, and see if the other one or two answer choices work.

Contrasting Comparison
Word/PhraseDictionary DefinitionExample
HoweverUsed to introduce a statement that contrasts with or seems to contradict something that has previously been saidJane wanted to play mini golf.  However, her boyfriend Harold said it was the worst game ever and he wouldn’t play.
AlthoughIn spite of that fact thatJane enjoyed her time with Harold at the movies, although she would rather have been playing mini golf. 
On the other handUsed to present factors that are opposed or that support opposing opinionI’d like to play another 18 holes of mini golf.  On the other hand, we could go to the movies.
AlternativelyAs another option or possibilityJane said she wants us all to play mini golf.  Alternatively, we could all go see a movie.
InsteadAn alternative or substituteJane said she wanted the group to play mini golf.  Instead, they all went to the movies.
NeverthelessIn spite of that; notwithstanding; all the sameJane insisted she would only play mini golf.  Nevertheless, they all ended up at the movies.
RegardlessDespite the prevailing circumstancesThe forecast was for rain and 40mph winds.  Regardless, Jane still wanted to play mini golf that evening. 
BesidesMoreover, anywayHarold told Jane he wasn’t going to play mini golf because it was raining.  Besides, he wanted to see the new movie that was coming out that night.
By contrastBeing strikingly different from something elseThat night, Harold studied for his test and went to bed early.  By contrast, Jane was out until 2am playing mini golf.
In any caseWhatever happens or may have happenedJane was disqualified from the mini golf tournament for excessive swearing.  In any case, she’s the best putter I’ve ever seen.
Despite thisIn spite of thisHarold brought an umbrella to the mini golf course.  Despite this, he and Jane got soaked when a thunderstorm arrived.
YetNevertheless, in spite of thatJane was truly happy out on the mini golf course.  Yet she couldn’t shake the feeling that there was more to life beyond hitting a ball through the clown’s mouth.

Similar Comparison
Word/PhraseDictionary DefinitionExample
SimilarlyUsed to indicate similarities between two facts or eventsThe 14th hole at the mini golf course requires you to hit the ball through a clown’s mouth that is opening and closing.  Similarly, the 18th hole makes you hit the ball through a windmill that is turning.
By the same tokenBecause of this same situation or conditionHarold had shaky hands that prevented him from being a surgeon.  By the same token, he could never make a three-foot putt.
Word/PhraseDictionary DefinitionExample
In summaryIndicating a summarizing statement will come nextJane despised the way Harold took so long to putt.  In summary, she hated playing with him.
In other wordsSame thing expressed a different wayHarold swore he would never set foot on AstroTurf again.  In other words, he retired from mini golf forever.
In conclusionLastly, to sum upShe was out on the course ever single day.  In conclusion, Jane loved mini golf.
In shortTo sum upHarold took 14 putts on the first hole.  In short, it ruined his tournament.
FinallyThe last point in a list
Word/PhraseDictionary DefinitionExample
For example / For instanceUsed to introduce something chosen as a typical caseSome people become obsessed with their hobbies.  For example, Jane plays 72 holes of mini golf a day.  
In particularTo single something out from the previous statementJane always played the last few holes well.  In particular, she made a hole in one nearly every time on the 18th.
SpecificallyTo make exact and clearJane liked to do some crazy things.  Specifically, she would throw golf balls at passing cars.
Word/PhraseDictionary DefinitionExample
In additionAs an extra person, thing, or instanceI want to go to the movies tonight.  In addition, Harold and Steve do too.
In factUsed to emphasize the truth of an assertion, especially one that might be to the contrary of what was expectedJane told Harold she was “pretty good” at mini golf.  In fact, she had won the Southern Putt-Off three years running. 
Furthermore / MoreoverIn addition Jane hired a putting coach to improve her mini golf game.  Furthermore, she has changed to a vegan diet to help her concentration.  
IndeedUsed to introduce a further and stronger or more surprising pointJane is a mini golf nut.  Indeed, I have never seen anyone play as many holes as her.  
To this end / to these endsIn order to achieve a particular aim based on the previous ideaJane wanted to play more mini golf.  To this end, she dropped out of school and joined the professional tour.
Word/PhraseDictionary Definition
NextComing immediately afterFirst Jane won the district competition.  Next was the regional competition.
ThenAt that time or nextJane played 36 holes in the morning.  Then she went home and took a nap.
SubsequentlyAfter a particular thing has happenedJane broke her putter over her knee and swore at a competitor. Subsequently, the official came over to disqualify her.
MeanwhileIn the intervening period of timeJane went on a long tirade about how unfair her disqualification was.  Meanwhile, Harold just stood there and looked kind of embarrassed.
ThusAs a result or consequence of thisJane told every man she met that mini golf came first in her life.  Thus, she remained single until many years later when an AstroTurf repairman swept her off her feet.  
ConsequentlyAs a result
As a resultConsequently