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Thủ thuật dẫn dắt người đọc trong viết tiếng Anh (và cả tiếng Việt) – Signposting techniques in writing English

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In academic writing, the author is responsible for making the text as clear as possible for the reader. To achieve clarity, the author has to ensure that the writing is explicit: in other words, it should anticipate and address the reader’s questions. An active reader will want to know what the author’s aims are and how they will be achieved; what the author’s position is about key issues; how the argument is constructed; how ideas relate to each other. Good writers use signposting language to signal to the reader where these answers can be found.

See more below:

It is useful to divide signposting language into two broad categories:

  • major signposts that signal key aspects of the work, such as purpose, structure, author’s stance, main points, direction of the argument, conclusions.
  • linking words and phrases that show connections between sentences and paragraphs.

Examples of major signposts:

  • The aim of this study is to ….
  • The purpose of this thesis is to….
  • This essay argues that ….
  • The main questions addressed in this paper are ….
  • This essay critically examines….
  • The above discussion raises some interesting questions.
  • This paper begins by …. It will then go on to …. Finally, ….
  • This chapter reviews the literature ….
  • In conclusion, ….

Examples of linking words and phrases:

  • Listing:
    first(ly), … / second(ly), … / finally, … /
  • Indicating addition or similarity:
    also, … / besides, … / in addition, … / furthermore, … / as well / similarly, …
  • Indicating contrast:
    however, … / nevertheless, … / on the other hand, … /
  • Giving a reason:
    for this reason, … / because … / because of …/ due to …
  • Indicating result or consequence:
    therefore, … / thus, … / as a result, … / consequently, …
  • Reformulating an idea:
    in other words, … / to put it simply, … / that is …
  • Exemplifying:
    for example, … / for instance, … / to exemplify, …

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