Common Words and Phrases to Help You Answer Transition Questions on the ACT English Test

By Lisa Zimmer Hatch, Scott A. Hatch

The ACT English Test contains several questions that ask you to select the best word or phrase to connect two ideas. To answer these transition questions, focus on the relationship between the two ideas. Check out this list of common transition categories and a few examples of some of the words and phrases that provide that particular connection.

Transition Category Use Examples
Addition or Similarity Use when the second idea is similar to the first or provides
additional information about the first.
and, also, likewise, similarly,
in addition, furthermore, correspondingly,
as, moreover, coupled with, and so on
Opposition or Contradiction Use when the second idea contradicts the first. but, however, on the contrary, in
contrast
, on the other hand, yet,
nevertheless, nonetheless, conversely,
although, instead, rather, otherwise,
and so on
Cause and Effect Use when the first idea causes the second or the second is a
result of the first.
due to, because of, because, in order
to
, since, while, so that, owing
to
, as a result, therefore, consequently,
thus, accordingly, for this reason, in
effect
, and so on
Example or Support Use when the second idea provides an example of or supporting
evidence for the first idea.
for example, in other words, to
illustrate
, for instance, especially,
namely, to clarify, and so on
Conclusion Use when the idea provides a summary of the ideas that precede
it.
in conclusion, to summarize, in short,
in brief, all in all, in fact, and so on
Chronology Use when the ideas are related by time. after, last, first, second, third, to begin, now, next, during,
eventually, prior to, as soon as, immediately, formerly,
occasionally, and so on