Overuse of linking phrases and discourse markers

There seems to be a tendency among non-native speakers of English to use more linking phrases in their writing than is necessary.

There are numerous examples of such phrases. Many of them use the passive voice and can be very cumbersome. Here are some:

Please note that…
At this point, it should be mentioned that…
It should be pointed out that…
At the same time it should be noted that…
Furthermore, it is also worth mentioning that…
Nonetheless, it must also be stated that…
Special attention should be paid to the fact that…
Therefore, as an introductory note it is worth pointing out that…
The analysis outlined above demonstrates that…
In addition it has recently been identified that…

Most of the time, such phrases can be deleted with no loss of meaning. I also regularly delete shorter phrases like the ones listed below (known as “discourse markers”):

In addition…
Moreover…
Furthermore…
Nonetheless…
Nevertheless
Therefore…
As a consequence…

Here’s an example of the usage of such phrases in context. It is about ships navigating in an area of the Black Sea.

Besides, there were Another 34 ships passing passed through the Strait of Gibraltar and proceeding proceeded towards the Black Sea.
Additionally and bearing in mind that As vessels navigating the area may have entered the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal as well as through the Strait of Gibraltar, the transit through Suez towards the Black Sea was also analysed.
As a result, it was identified that 107 vessels that had passed through the Suez Canal reached the area of interest within the reference period.

As you can see, the phrases can be deleted with no loss of meaning, and the text becomes significantly shorter and clearer.

If the connection with the previous sentence or paragraph is obvious (which it should be if your writing follows a logical sequence), it is probably not necessary to use linking phrases.

If you want to write well in English, such phrases should be used sparingly, if at all.

 

 

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