Coherence in IELTS Writing

Coherence in IELTS Writing

Coherence in IELTS Writing
Coherence in IELTS Writing

ACHIEVING COHERENCE

Coherence is a logical linking of ideas within and between paragraphs. One of the ways to achieve coherence is to use adequate transitional words and expressions. They link ideas and guide the reader ‘like traffic signs.’ Transitional words and expressions tell us about the movement and direction of the argument. Transitional words and expressions inform the reader whether

– a similar idea follows (for example, similarly, and, in addition)

– an opposing idea is introduced (for example, on the other hand, but, in contrast)

– an example is provided (for example, for example, to illustrate)  

Transitional words and expressions are used to link ideas within a paragraph and between paragraphs. Transitions are classified by their function in terms of linking ideas in longer pieces of writing. Some types f transitions include the following:

  To introduce and add information    First, second, next, in addition, finally, also, and, besides, furthermore, moreover, etc.  
    To give examples, support/emphasis  In other words, to put it differently, as an illustration, in this case, for this reason, another key point, on the positive/negative side, truly, certainly, in particular, for instance, to enumerate, in fact  
    To express comparison  Like, in the same way, in the same manner, comparatively, too, in comparison, compared with, similar to, similarly, in like manner, in similar fashion, also, along with, just as, by the same token, likewise, the same as  
    To express contrast  Unlike, on the other hand, yet, although, while, nevertheless, nonetheless, notwithstanding, however, after all, conversely, rather than, regardless, but different from, in contrast to, differ, on the contrary, at the same time  
    To conclude/summarize/restate  All things considered, overall, as shown above, in the long run, given these points, as has been noted, in summary, in conclusion, to sum up, on the whole, in either case, all in all, obviously, ultimately, definitely
    To expressing advantages  One advantage of……..is; has many advantages; the main advantage of……..is; one major advantage of………is; an additional advantage of……….is; a further advantage of……….is; it is often believed that; despite these obvious advantages; it is often suggested that; the most important advantage of……………is;  
    To express disadvantages  One disadvantage of…………is; there are certain disadvantages to; the main disadvantage of; one major disadvantage of; an additional disadvantage……..is, another disadvantage of……..is, despite/in spite of; however,……..; on the other hand,………..; the most important drawback of………………is  
    To weigh advantages and disadvantagesI believe that its advantages/benefits/merits outweigh disadvantages/ drawbacks/demerits   Personally, I am inclined to the view that the merits outweigh the drawback.  

Coherence can also be achieved by linking ideas in a text by verbal bridges. They are the following:

– repetition of keywords

-use of synonyms

-use of pronouns.

One more way to achieve coherence is to organize supporting ideas using one or a combination of the following principles:

– emphatic order

» from the least important to the most important idea or vice versa

» from a less complex to a more complex idea or vice versa

» from a less familiar to a more familiar idea or vice versa

– order of frequency (from the least frequent event to the most frequent or vice versa)

-time order (chronological or retrospective presentation of events)

– spatial order (organizing information in order of space or location).

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