Rliberni's Blog – Radical language

June 5, 2009

Words used for ordering time sequences

Filed under: Improving English language skills — rliberni @ 4:08 pm

When writing and speaking in formal situations it is important to demonstrate versatility in our use of language. If we use a restricted range of vocabulary and structures our results will be repetitive and boring.

A useful exercise to do in an idle moment is to select a word and then find a handful of synonyms to use instead of that word – make sure you know how to use them correctly!

One group of words that can help us demonstrate variety in our language are sequencing words. You will recognise these as the words used to begin paragraphs in writing but they are also very useful in giving presentations or speaking in meetings or other formal situations.

Having a selection of these at our fingertips helps us to keep our speaking and writing interesting and keep the attention of our audience.

In exam writing it is essential not to overwork the same phrases!

• Initially
• At first
• To start with
• First of all
• Firstly
• To begin with
• In the beginning

• Secondly
• thirdly
• later
• then
• afterwards
• at this point
• meanwhile
• next
• after that
• subsequently
• later on
• during this time

• Finally
• Eventually
• In time
• In the end
• Ultimately
• Lastly

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