Bench & Bar Kentucky, Vol. 66, No. 5, September 2002
2 Pages Posted: 20 Jun 2006
Transitions tell your reader, as Humphrey Bogart said to Ingrid Bergman in Casablanca, "where you've been and where you're going." Transitions tie together sentences and paragraphs; they link familiar material (which you already have discussed) to unfamiliar material (which you are about to discuss). A missing or inappropriate transition can leave your reader with a confusing jumble of ideas.
Transitions exist at many levels. Large-scale transitions, such as road maps and transitional paragraphs, link large sections of the writing together. Small-scale transitions may be no more than a sentence or a clause or a word. Internal previews (First...Second...Third...) are a very effective way to link paragraphs or elements of a legal test.
This essay describes the types of transitions, provides examples of each, and includes tips for using transitions effectively.
Keywords: transition, legal writing, road map, internal preview
JEL Classification: K00
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation