Paragraphs - Grammar

AMA Manual of Style - Stacy L. Christiansen, Cheryl Iverson 2020


A paragraph is a cohesive group of sentences. It presents a thought or several related thoughts. Each paragraph should be long enough to stand alone but short enough to hold the reader’s attention and then direct that attention to the next thought. Too many short paragraphs are jarring to the reader, whereas too many long paragraphs strain the reader’s attention. Sentences within a single paragraph should use parallel structure and consistent tense as much as possible.

Transitions are words or phrases that signal a connection among ideas. Transitions build bridges between paragraphs (and between sentences) and help the text flow.5

To show addition: also, furthermore, in addition, moreover

To show contrast: however, yet, conversely, nevertheless, although

To show comparison: similarly, likewise

To show results: therefore, thus, as a result, consequently

To show time sequence: first (second, third, and so on), later, meanwhile, subsequently, while

To summarize: hence, in summary, finally