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Cohesion Strategies: Revising Paragraphs with Transitional Words and Phrases


These two revision exercises provide opportunities to apply the techniques introduced in Cohesion Strategies: Transitional Words and Phrases.

Cohesion Exercise A: Learning Under Pressure

Organize these five sentences into a cohesive paragraph by adding appropriate transitional words and phrases to sentences number 2, 3, and 5. When you are done, compare your paragraph with the original on page two.

  1. Dr. Edward C. Tolman, after experimenting with rats over a long period of years, found that rats that learned to run a maze under the pressure of hunger took much longer to learn the maze than rats that learned under non-crisis conditions.
  2. The learning that did take place was of a narrow type.
  3. After learning the "right" route, these rats panicked if one avenue were blocked off.
  4. They were not able to survey the field to notice alternative routes.
  5. When the rats were permitted to learn under non-crisis conditions, they later performed well in a crisis.

Cohesion Exercise B: Energy Efficiency

Organize these seven sentences into two cohesive paragraphs by adding appropriate transitional words and phrases to sentences number 2, 3, 5, and 7. When you are done, compare your paragraphs with the originals on page two.

  1. There is a source of energy that produces no radioactive waste, nothing in the way of petrodollars, and very little pollution.
  2. The source can provide the energy that conventional sources may not be able to furnish.
  3. Unhappily, it does not receive the emphasis and attention it deserves.
  4. The source might be called energy efficiency, for Americans like to think of themselves as efficient people.
  5. The energy source is generally known by the more prosaic term conservation.
  6. To be semantically accurate, the source should be called conservation energy, to remind us of the reality--that conservation is no less an energy alternative than oil, gas, coal, or nuclear.
  7. In the near term, conservation could do no more than any of the conventional sources to help the country deal with the energy problem it has.

Examples of Transitional Words & Phrases at Work:
Model Place Descriptions: Four Descriptive Paragraphs

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