Study of the punctuation around transitions and connectors should follow study
of the previous page,
Transitions and Connectors and
its accompanying quiz.|
The rules for punctuation around transitions and
connectors are brief. There are, basically, three ways to punctuate
transitions and connectors within essays. Note the following examples:
I studied hard for the exam. However, I failed. (Capital letter
following a period)
I studied hard for the exam; however, I failed. (Lower case letter
following a semicolon)
The weather in Alaska is cold in the winter. Otherwise, I like living
there. (Capital letter following a period)
The weather in Alaska is cold in the winter; otherwise, I like living there.
(Lower case letter following a semicolon)
The punctuation in both sets of examples above is identical in terms of
"correctness." Neither the use of the semicolon nor period is "preferable" to the
other. Probably the use of one or the other will be influenced by the sentences
around it, with "sentence variety" a factor in choosing which to use.
Less frequently, transitions and connectors are used within a sentence as follows:
The president promised a quick victory. Victory, however, was not easily
Most people think the senator is honest. He is, instead, a thief and a
Note that in the sentences above, the transition is set of by commas on both
sides. Also note that it would be possible to remove both the
commas and the transitions without affecting the "correctness" of the remaining
Summary: In sum, transitions and
connectors show the relationship between ideas within sentences. In
addition, correctly placed and punctuated transitions and connectors can help guide the
reader through a complex maze of ideas.
The quiz, Punctuation Around Transitions and Connectors, is
HERE (will open
in new window).