The Cohension Book

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					Text has cohesion if


      The
    cohesion
      book

   Sue Palmer
     Text has cohesion if
* it is clearly organised so readers
   can find their way round the ideas

* it includes words and phrases that
   act like ‘signposts’, helping readers
   to follow the author’s train of
   thought

* the writing ‘holds together’, so
   that it is easy to read and
   understand.
                          Coherence
 Headings and              Some ways of        Layout conventions
   subheadings              helping the         show what sort
give an overview          reader see how       of text it is, e.g.
 of the text’s            your ideas are           diary, letter,
  organisation.              organised.
                                                newspaper, article.


     Paragraph breaks                        Punctuation
show shifts of time, place,          shows where one chunk of
   viewpoint, topic, etc.            meaning ends and another
                                       begins. (See The Punctuation Book)

* Plan your writing in                Presentational devices
 advance on a skeleton              draw attention to sections of
 framework.                        text and make meaning clearer
* Frequently re-read               e.g. speech bubbles,
 your work to check                      timelines, flowcharts, etc.
                                         bullet points,
 organisation is clear.                  boxed information.
 a shift of
    time
                       Paragraphing                     a new topic or
                                                       aspect of a topic
                        Paragraph breaks               one paragraph
Three weeks later…
In 1837,…
                        can help readers               per category
                          to follow your
                         train of thought              a new step or
  a shift of               by showing…                   stage in a
    place                                                 process
Meanwhile, deep in
                            a new speaker
the forest,…
                           in direct speech
                             (See The Sentence Book)

                                                       a move from one
                       * In non-fiction writing,        main point (or
 a shift of              plan paragraphs               group of points
  mood or                beforehand.
                                                          to another
 viewpoint             * In fiction, beware of
                         all shifts of emphasis.
Suddenly, they leapt                                    *              * *
Into action…
                                                        *              * *
Tom, on the other hand, was furious…
                                                        *              * *
     conjunctions
                  Cohesive devices
                                           Words and phrases              sentence
     These show links
                                               can act like               connectives
     between ideas
     within a sentence,                     signposts to help             Words and phrases
     e.g. when,                                readers see                that show links
     because, until,                       significant links in           between one
                                                                          sentence and the
     although.                                  the text.                 next, e.g.
                                                                          However,
Connection words, phrases and sentences are important                     Consequently,
throughout written work. However, they are particularly
                                                          sentence        On the other hand…
useful at the start of a new paragraph.
                                                          frames
      punctuation                                          Where nouns or verbs act as
                                                           signposts, you can make a
     Some punctuation marks                                ‘sentence frame’, e.g.
     (: ; -) can show links                                Begin by…
     between clauses.                                      The reason that… is…
   Collect examples from texts                            Use these ‘signposts’ to link
   you read. Read sentences                               your own ideas. Practise
   aloud to get the feel of the                           the sentences in speech
   language patterns.                                     before you write.
                             Time Links
Use time links to show the                  Vary the linking devices so
passage of time in fiction                  they guide the reader
and recounts.                               without being too obvious.

         e.g. setting the scene           time passing             conclusion
sentence
connectives       Yesterday,…            Next,… Then,…             Finally,…
                  On 4th June 2000,…     After that,…              Eventually,…
                                         A few weeks later,…
                  One wintry morning,…                             At last,…
                                         By the end of October,…


conjunctions                             As time went by,…
linking           When Jane was                                    When it was
clauses           four years old,…       After she had left,…      all over,…




sentence          It all began with      Several weeks passed.     It was the end of
frames            an invitation.                                   the adventure.
                                         The clock
                                         struck midnight.
                  Cause and effect
conjunctions     The room is cold because the window is open.
linking          When the window is open, the room is cold.
clauses          If the window is open, the room is cold.
                 The window is open so the room is cold.



sentence         The window is open.     Therefore, the room is cold.
connectives                              Consequently, the room is cold.
                                         As a result, the room is cold.



sentence         The window is open.     This means that the room is cold.
frames                                   This results in the room being cold.
                                         This causes the room to be cold.
                 The reason (that) the room is cold is that the window is open.


Note that some sentence                      Cause and effect links are
frames lead to changes                       particularly important in
in the form of the verb.                     explanation writing.
   + Addition +                               Opposition
       and as well too                              but    yet
        Also, Moreover,                          while whereas
           Furthermore,                     However, Alternatively,
   In addition, What is more,                   On the other hand,
        Another point is …                       On the contrary,
      A further feature is …              The opposite point of view is…
                      These links are useful in
                      • descriptive writing
                      • texts which argue for or
                        against a point of view.

      Comparison, e.g.                             Contrast, e.g.
____________ and _______ are           ____________ and _______ are
similar in several ways. One           different in a number of ways.
similarity is that __________.         For instance, __________ is
Another way in which they are          _______, while __________ is
alike is ________. They are            ____________. Another difference
both ____________. A further           is that ________. They also differ
feature they have in common            in that _________ is ________,
is____________.                        whereas ________is ________.
                           Sequence

   In instructions and explanations, signpost stages in the process,




    1                  2                    3                     4
 First,…          Secondly,..            Next,…               Finally,…
                   The next         When the mixture          Finish off
Begin by…
                  stage is…            is ready…                by…
                            Clarity

       Definitions and examples help make meaning clear,
     Use key words and sentence frames to introduce them.




  Introducing definitions               Introducing examples
• a bloop, which is a ……………            e.g. such as    including
                                      For example,    For instance,
• a ……………, known as a bloop
                                         This can be seen in …
• a …………… called a bloop
                                        This is illustrated by …
• a bloop (a …………)                       Examples include …
       Holding text together 1
 Nouns, noun phrases
                             Make sure pronouns are
and pronouns help bind       consistent in person and
   text together by          number. If not, the
making references back       text may be confusing
                             to read.
     and forward.

 Rob knocked on the door.    If one wants to be a top-class
An old woman opened it and     player, we have to practise
stared down at the boy. He   because players do not make
  smiled back. This must         it to the top unless you
       be Mrs Gunn.              give a hundred per cent.



Use a variety of nouns,       In impersonal text,
noun phrases and              stick to third person
pronouns to:
                              pronouns. If you start
• avoid repetition
• improve the cohesion        in the singular, don’t
  of your writing.            drift into the plural.
                       Holding text together 2
   Some texts                                                           Some texts
    are mostly                 Make sure verb tenses                     are mostly
   past tense:                 are consistent. If not,                    present
   • recount                   the text may be                             tense:
                               confusing to read.                      • instruction
   • narrative
     fiction                                                           • report
                                                                       • explanation
                         Reported speech         Direct speech
                                                                       • persuasion
                            is in the               is usually
                           past tense.           present tense.        • discussion

Exceptions               The general said that
* most direct
  speech and             his men were fit        “My men are fit
  quotations
* references to          and highly trained.     and highly trained.
  things which
  continue to exist      They would be           They will be
  beyond the
  narrative              ready when the          ready when the           Exceptions
* sudden changes                                                          * historical reports
  into the present       invasion began.         invasion begins,”          and explanations
  tense for dramatic                                                      * reference to or
  effect.                                        said the general.          examples from
                                                                            the past.
Holding text together 3
        Make sure your overall
        style and viewpoint are
        consistent, depending on
        purpose and audience.


    personal           or          impersonal

   I, we, you                    third person
                                    and/or
                                 passive voice
                            (see The Complex Sentence Book)


    informal           or             formal

          (see The Standard English Book)



   subjective          or           objective

   your opinion                 just the facts
Skeleton Poster Books
for GRAMMAR




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