To order paragraphs of a text, you have to work like a detective and look for clues to help you. These tips will show you how.

  • Read all the paragraphs before deciding on the correct order.

Look for linking words and discourse markers that express:

  • the same idea: too, also, furthermore, in addition, what’s more, etc.
  • a different idea: however, but, nevertheless, on the other hand, then again, while, whereas, etc.
  • reason and result: so, as a result, consequently, for this reason, since, as, because of this, due to, etc.
  • sequence or order: firstly, first of all, initially, then, secondly, finally, eventually, in the end, etc.

Look for connections between paragraphs. Reference words link backwards to things earlier in the text or forwards to things later in the text. Pronouns are typical reference words, for example:

  • personal pronouns (I, you, he, she, it, we, they)
  • possessive pronouns (my, mine, your, yours, his, her, hers, its, our, ours, their, theirs)
  • demonstrative pronouns (this, that, these, those)


How well did you do in the exercise?  Tell us what was new to you?