Compare and Contrast Transition Words in English

Last Updated on April 2, 2021

Compare and contrast transition words! You can connect related thoughts or ideas with transition words. Transition words or phrases can help you compare or contrast ideas. They can do this by showing the degree to which something related is different or similar. It helps you note the correlation that exists between the two concepts. These words work well in comparison essays to keep your thoughts from getting jumbled.

Using transition words can make your arguments clearly understood. You can find transition words in any type of writing. Writers implement these transition words to keep their argument flowing nicely. When writers use transition words their writing becomes more purposeful and focused. Each point relates to the next.

You can use transition words to join independent clauses. To do this, you place the transitions between a period and a comma. In addition, you can place a transition word or phrase between a semicolon and a comma.

Compare and Contrast Transition Words

Compare Transition Words and Phrases

You use compare transition words to show a similar relationship between two ideas. Some common compare transition words include:

  • in the same way
  • in like manner
  • similarly
  • in like fashion
  • by the same token

To set up an alike comparison you can begin talking about the first object or person you wish to compare. For example, compare two people’s enjoyment of running in the morning. You could start by writing:

  • Suzy likes to go running before everyone wakes up.

Begin the next sentence with a compare transition to connect Suzy and Fred:

  • Similarly, Fred sprints through the streets before the sun begins to rise.

The word similarly indicates that the two compared terms are alike.

Transitions like “in addition” can work to compare similarities. For example, compare the benefits of jogging. You may list all the similar benefits in one list. To avoid a lengthy sentence you can use two sentences to discuss the benefits. To do this, begins the second sentence with “in addition“.

Examples of compare transition words

  • I hated gym in elementary. Similarly, I hate gym in high school.
  • I love playing volleyball at the beach; likewise, I love playing volleyball in the gym.
  • You need to develop fast reflexes when playing baseball. In the same way, fast reflexes are important for servers.

Contrast Transition Words and Phrases

Contrast transition words are important in essays to show off-topic debates. They are necessary to distinguish different ideas or beliefs. Some contrast words include:

  • unlike
  • however
  • though
  • yet
  • never the less
  • in contrary
  • but
  • on the other hand

These contrast words indicate that you are about to change topics. You use contrast words in the same way you use compare words. These words link two independent clauses together to show a comparison. Contrast words show how things differ. This is unlike compare words that show similarities between compared elements.


  • Frank and Fred have different hairstyles; however, they both enjoy using gel on their hair.
  • I like skating. Yet, I hate ice.
  • Bob and Kara enjoy skiing; unlike, Fred who prefers indoor activities.

Universal Compare and Contrast Words

Sometimes transition words allow you to both compare and contrast ideas. These are usually referred to as signal words. These words signal a comparison with being forthcoming, but not what type of comparison it will be.

Examples of universal transition words:

  • On the other hand
  • On the same token
  • While
  • At the same time

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