Skip to content

Academic writing


In this article you will read more about writing sentences that keep your paragraphs flowing. There are two kind of sentences. A simple sentence and a compound sentence. A simple sentence is a standalone and independent sentence. For example, “Dogs are amazing”. Unfortunately, we cannot write complete paragraphs with simple sentences. If we want to write in one sentence a reason why dogs are amazing, we turn it into a compound sentence.  Another example why we want to use compound sentences is to make our paragraphs flow better and add detail.

What is a compound sentence?

A compound sentence is a sentence with two or more independent clauses that express related ideas. The two or more independent clauses are usually connected using a semicolon or a coordinating conjunction. Coordinating conjunctions are words like “for”, “and”, “but”, “yet”, “so”, “nor”, “or”.



If you want to know which of the seven coordinating conjunctions to use think of “FANBOYS”.



For more information see the reference:

Oshima, A., & Hogue, A. (2006). Writing academic english. Pearson Longman.

And please see also:



Writing good paragraphs

In this article you will read how to write a good paragraph. A good paragraph includes a topic sentence, supporting sentences and a concluding sentence (Oshima and Hogue, 2006).



What is a topic sentence?

A topic or sometimes referred to as focus sentence is the most important sentence in your paragraph. Readers like to be told what they are going to read about and that is exactly what the topic sentence does. The topic sentence explains what the rest of the paragraph is about. In short, it is a complete sentence with a verb and a subject.



Furthermore, a topic sentence is not to specific or general and has no unrelated controlling ideas. The controlling idea reports what direction the paragraph will take. For example:



After you start your paragraph with a topic sentence the rest are supporting sentences that discuss one idea.



In relation to the silver example, two supporting sentences would be:


Furthermore, a paragraph is usually ended with a concluding sentence. A final or concluding sentence signals the end of the paragraph by repeating the topic sentence in different word or it summarizes the main idea of the paragraph.


Does the following example summarise the main point? Or does it repeat the topic sentence in different words?


In sum, start a paragraph with a topic sentence, add supporting sentences of that topic and end with a concluding sentence. For more information please see the reference

Oshima, A., & Hogue, A. (2006). Writing academic english. Pearson Longman.

Do you need the help from our academic writing coach through one-on-one sessions? 




We offer individual sessions and focus on written academic English discourse and the stages involved in writing a critical thesis or dissertation.

Please contact us…

Topscriptie has already helped more than 6,000 students!

Let us help you with your studies or graduation. Discover what we can do for you.


Winner of the best thesis agency in the Netherlands

Winner of the best thesis agency in the Netherlands

powered by Google