Powerful Academic Phrases to Improve Your Essay Writing 

by Paperpal
academic phrases

Adopting a formal style of writing is crucial for any type of academic writing, be it scholarly articles, research papers or essays. It requires a deep understanding of the subject matter, the ability to analyze and synthesize complex information, and the skill to communicate ideas effectively. One of the primary challenges of academic writing is the need to balance clarity with accuracy.  

There are various factors that should be borne in mind in academic writing. The writing should be clear and precise. It should be well structured with a clear focus while demonstrating the rigor with which the research was conducted. Long winding sentences and emotional language must be completely avoided. While discipline specific language should be used, jargon must be avoided. In other words, academic writing is not easy. However, by using the right words and academic phrases, you can deliver clear, concise writing that can elevate your scholarly papers or essays.  

In this article we will look at a few strong academic phrases that can go a long way in improving your academic essay writing.

Table of Contents

Academic phrases for various situations

In writing an academic essay, arguments and ideas need to be built and articulated in a compelling manner. These should be supported with appropriate evidence. Furthermore, verifiable facts and examples must be presented in an engaging way and the entire essay should be well structured.  

In all these, the usage of right academic phrases becomes helpful. Depending on what you want to convey, different academic phrases can be used in various situations as discussed below. 

Comparing and contrasting

Very often in essays you may have to engage in the process of comparing and contrasting information, key aspects of two phenomena taken for study, or various sources for your literature review and so on. You will have to bring in to your discussion not just the similarities to your arguments, but also opposing or conflicting perspectives.  

Use of appropriate phrases will help organically bring in such similar or contrasting information. For example, some of the phrases that can be used to discuss similarities and differences include: In comparison or by contrast, however, conversely, alternatively, whereas, on the other hand, likewise, in the same way and so on. Example: “The author expresses his opinion based on anecdotal references. By contrast the survey he quotes and tries to argue against is more plausible with the rigorous data it has collected.”  

Providing examples

While writing an academic essay, you are required to support and expand your ideas and arguments through the use of examples. Phrases that can be used to provide examples include: for example, for instance, to illustrate, to exemplify, to demonstrate. 

Example: “Climate and weather patterns are changing rapidly and its ramifications are staring us in the face. For example, look at what is happening with the incessant rains pouring down during certain summer months.”  

Elaborating on information

As you structure your narrative, you will have to elaborate at various points on the information, ideas, and arguments that you are presenting. This has to be done in a manner that does not adversely affect the smooth flow of the narrative. It is here that the usage of appropriate phrases is crucial to uplift the quality of your essay. Using phrases such as moreover, furthermore, in other words, in addition and so on can aid in providing additional information. 

Example: “Rising temperatures are greatly impacting the health of children belonging to vulnerable groups in parts of the Asian sub-continent. Moreover, the lack of adequate government support and dismal welfare measures is making lives harder for such families.” 

Indicating uncertainty

While writing research papers or essays, researchers often acknowledge the limitations of their studies and the possibilities for conflicting or opposing views. Such recognition is pertinent for the advancement of scientific knowledge. There are various phrases that can be used to indicate uncertainty such as: it could be argued that the data suggest that evidence suggest that, or it is possible due to. 

Example: “The evidence suggests that the new teaching methods are beneficial and can be considered as an alternative to existing methods”. 


The concluding part of your essay should be a summary of your main ideas and arguments and its significance. To this end, the following phrases can be utilized: to summarise, to conclude, above all, or most significantly.  

Example: “To conclude, evidence points to the positive impact of periodic creative workshops on children’s cognitive development.”   

While academic writing may be challenging, mastering the use of appropriate academic phrases, avoiding jargon, and delivering clear, concise writing can elevate one’s writing to a higher and contribute to the advancement of knowledge in their respective fields. 

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