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Major And Minor Signposting English Language Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Language
Wordcount: 3100 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Sometimes referred to as transitioning, signposting can link main sections of a document, as well as smaller sections such as sentences and paragraphs. Signposts can signal stages of development or a change in ideas or arguments and provide clear clues where we’re going. They can guide the reader through a text, illustrating how ideas fit together and showing the reader the sequence of the writer’s thought-process, argumentation or stance on an issue.

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Like a topic sentence which tells the reader where the paragraph is going, a signpost often indicates to the reader within a document where they’ve been and that a change in direction or turn in the road is about to come.Signposting in writing can be thought of as indications on mountain hikes where posted signs point directions ahead of us and back down the trail where we’ve been. They can confirm we’re on the right path and indicate a turning point or a fork in the road. (Again, in preparing this re-write, I’ve come across similar metaphors at prestigious sites, and feel it creates a well-communicated image, but by all means cut it if you think it’s more appropriate).Signposting can create transitions between paragraphs and aid in creating a flowing, coherent style.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting: Slide 2b

Major Signposting

Major signposts are, as the name implies, larger transitions among sections or chapters of a document. They can set up passages such as main points, a structural change, a personal opinion, conclusions or a new track in argumentation. Major signposts can be complete sentences or paragraphs and are a fundamental tool for creating coherence. Some examples of major signposting follow.

In conclusion, after having examined the responses to over 500 completed questionnaires we can confidently say there is strong potential for success for a new store in Salzburg.

The goal of this paper is to investigate the relationship between viewers of you tube music videos and their purchasing habits of the music contained in the videos they watch.

This chapter will examine the impact of carbon dioxide emissions on global warming.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting : Slide 3

Exercise name:

Categorizing major signposts,

Exercise type Drag to container

Copyright info


Below you’ll find 5 sentences which function as major signposts. Drag each to the appropriate container representing its purpose.

While the analysis of the results of the tests carried out on samples of sand extracted from the riverbed overwhelmingly indicates an increase in pollution, examination of water samples collected at 500 meter intervals places these results in a new light.

Having outlined the background to the formulation of our questionnaire, we now move on its implementation.

In closing, it has been seen that the statistical evidence gathered supports the assumption that ocean temperatures are indeed rising at an accelerating rate.

The aim of this report is provide empirical evidence which confirms the link between obesity and heart disease.

After having examined the collected data in detail and confirmed the amount and genre of urban travel, as well as examining the costs of various proposals for remedying the current congestion, it is my view that the most practical and economic solution is to invest in an additional metro line.

Signalling main points

Structural change

A new track in argumentation

Expressing a personal opinion


Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting: Slide 4

Exercise name Major Signposting

Exercise type unscramble words

Instruction: Unscramble the following words to form complete sentences which contain signposting words and phrases.

[The key point] [addressed] [in this paper] [is] [the need for] [further research] [into the causes] [of skin cancer].

[The goal] [of this study] [is] [to determine] [if] [there is] [a market for] [a permanent musical theatre] [in Munich].

[This essay] [examines] [the correlation] [between] [education and income] [in Europe] [during] [the last decade].

[This chapter] [argues that] [varying statistics] [indicate] [radically different] [views] [on the need] [for a new civic center].

[The previous discussion] [raises] [the issue] [of the environmental] [impact] [of building] [a new runway].

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting: Slide 5a

Exercise name Explanation: Minor signposting, exemplifying and sequencing

Exercise type: Input screen

Minor Signposting

Minor signposting, which in this project we refer to as cohesive markers, can be single “transitional” words or short phrases which set up lists, provide additional elements, contrast, or give a reason. They create flow, coherence and cohesion and guide the reader in understanding the relationships among the elements of the text. Cohesive markers aid the reader in following the development of ideas and in joining statements which follow one another or refer back to previously-mentioned ideas.

In academic writing cohesive markers are used for a variety of functions, including:

exemplifying, contrasting, sequencing, cause and effect, defining and classifying.

Module 6 covers cohesive markers whose function is cause and effect, contrasting and process. Exemplifying, sequencing, defining and classifying will be explored here.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting: Slide 5b


An exemplifying cohesive marker provides examples, often in order to illustrate a point, support an argument or to clarify a statement. They can be effective for substantiating generalizations. Key words and phrases useful in exemplifying include:

Scott: as you can see, I’ve taken your suggestion for breaking the following lists into small chunks. For layout purposes it’s likely better to arrange them in columns. Also, I haven’t included “to” in listing each of the verbs, but if you feel it’s clearer to do so, by all means do.

Phrases used to exemplify

For example …

As an example of this …

An illustration of this …

A case in point

For instance

Verbs used to exemplify


as illustrated by




as exemplified by



Additional nouns used to exemplify

An instance

A demonstration


A manifestation


An illustration of this is found in the research of Hawes of Smith.

A case in point is the variety of dialects still found today in the north-eastern Italian Alps.

For example in the soil composition of the lower Nile, Amazon and Oronoco.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting: Slide 5c


Sequencing cohesive markers list elements in a logical order. This order is usually based on time and is useful for describing processes and creating lists. Important sequencing words and phrases include:

First(ly), second(ly), next, later, then, before, previous, afterwards, subsequently, simultaneously


First, 100 random samples were taken from the overall population of white pine tree specimens on the island.

Next, the samples were classified according to size and weight.

Subsequently, all compiled data was cross-referenced with the previous study carried out in 2004.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting : Slide 6

Exercise name: Categorising exemplifying and sequencing cohesive markers

Drag to container

Below you’ll find a list of words and phases which can be used as cohesive markers. Sort the phases into the right category.

Scott: I’m not wild about this exercise now that we’ve reduced the categories from 4 to 2; what do you think?



[Thirdly] [shows (this)]

[Additionally] [such as]

[Then] [similarly] ]

[Afterwards] [exemplifies]

[First of all] [an illustration of]

[finally] [examples]

[Furthermore] [as in the case]

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting : Slide 7

Exercise name: Sequencing

Exercise type: Unscramble sentences

Put the following sentences into their correct order to form a flowing and coherent paragraph.

Initially, a list of twenty key parameters for calculating the potential for geothermal power (GTP) were drawn up. Secondly, 100 sites within Germany were selected for testing. These sites were then classified according to whether they were near surface GTP or deep GTP. Following this classification, the sites were then subdivided into probable usage of geothermal electricity or geothermal heating generation. In the next stage, both types of sites were examined for their accessibility for construction and for energy transportation.

Subsequently, economic risk factors additional to accessibility are examined. These include maintenance costs and insufficient temperature and water. Finally, the results of the twenty parameters have been compiled to create a feasibility ranking of the sites.


Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting : Slide 8

Exercise name:

Effective Exemplification

Exercise type

Missing words / Gap fill

Copyright info

Instruction Please fill in the gaps in the two texts below with 8 words or phrases from the box. Sometimes it will be necessary to change a word. Careful: 1 word or phrase will be left over!


an example] [illustrates] [instance] [case in point] [shown] [exemplifies] [for example] [such as] [an illustration]

[An example] of the benefits of placing quotas on the number of foreign films permitted to be released is that it stimulates the production of domestic films. The successful series of children’s films based on local fairy tales [illustrates] this point, as does for [instance] the critically-acclaimed and award-winning documentary on Pablo Picasso.

Here, a new 4-cylinder automobile diesel engine has been chosen to serve as [an illustration] of the function of a turbocharger. As [shown] in Fig. 7 the turbocharger compresses the gas for injection into the cylinder.

A DNA molecule [such as] the one in Fig. 4 [exemplifies] the order of the nucleotide base.

The research performed by Higgins and Smith is a [case in point].

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting : Slide 9

Exercise name:

Exercise type

Connect it

Copyright info

Instruction Make complete sentences by matching each of the beginning phrases on the left with the rest of the sentence on the right.

Here we will use the “exemplifying” elements from Old Screen 11. (?)

Here we require 2 more sample sentences.

Scott: are the first four sample sentences you’ve kept below really exemplifying?

Similarly, the indigenous populations of South America [ ] [ ] also exhibit these characteristics

His writing applauds the virtues of the welfare state; [ ] [ ] however, events of his own life contradict this.

On one hand, results indicate a trend [ ] [ ] on the other hand there are a great many exceptions to this.

towards greater consolidation, while

A marked increase in the incidences of slower reaction [ ] [ ] likewise statistics point to a greater number of accidents.

times is shown in the chart.

This is manifested by [ ] [ ] a stark increase in the concentration of sodium carbide.

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An instance of such behaviour [ ] [ ] can also be found among adolescents in urban areas.

Subsequently the statistical results [ ] [ ] were compared to previously-recorded experiments.

Secondly, all samples were isolated [ ] [ ] to prevent potential contamination.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting Screen 10a

Exercise name: Input screen

Defining cohesive markers

Exercise type

Copyright info


A defining cohesive marker states the meaning of an idea. It seeks to name or denote an idea or object, sometimes providing boundaries or limits, characterizing it or differentiating it from other similar concepts. Key words and useful phrases for defining include:

Phrases used fordefining

is known as

is characterized by

this is

Verbs used for defining












Note these verbs can be used actively or in their passive form, such as “is specified as” or “are characterized by”

Nouns used for defining







Example sentences with defining cohesive markers:

The prototype is represented by the reference code X8.

A new species of the plant recently discovered in Southeast Asia is characterized by its large, waxy leaves.

The quantity of the substance found in 100 milliliter samples specifies in which category the sample is placed.

Module 3 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting Screen 10b

Exercise name: Input screen

Classifying cohesive markers

Exercise type

Copyright info



A classifying cohesive marker puts items into groups or classes. It logically breaks up larger groups into smaller parts which enable more specific consideration or analysis. These groups can be formed based on common characteristics, and it is sometimes useful to explain why or how we have chosen to form these types of groups. Key words and useful phrases for classifying include:

Phrases used for classifying

can be grouped into

may be categorized according to

Verbs used for classifying






Nouns used for classifying










Here are 3 sample sentences

Synthetic polymers can be grouped into three primary types: elastomers, thermoplastics and thermosets.

The classification of planets in our own solar system has provoked debate for centuries, even as recently as 2006 when the International Astronomical Union published their views.

Renewable energy sources can be categorized into wind, solar, geo-thermal and water energy.

Module 3 Paragraphs II: Slide 1 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting Screen 11

Exercise name: Defining and Classifying cohesive markers

Exercise type: Multiple choice, pull down

Copyright info

Instruction: Select the correct word from the pull-down menu.

The International Astronomical Union is responsible for assigning names to identifiable features on planets. Geographical features of Mercury are (sorted specified, named, ranked) into seven (characteristics, categories, kinds, ways) ranging from craters to valles. Each of the seven (titles, classifies, sorts varieties) is given names according to a particular convention. For example, craters are (delineated, meant, referred, named) after deceased cultural figures, whereas montes are (referred, characterized, specified, being) by words for “hot”

Indigenous peoples of North America may be sorted on the basis of geographical location. Anthropologists have chosen ten such areas based on mutual cultural characteristics. In turn, these ten geographic regions are further (delineated, specified, titled, divided) into many subsets. For example, the Northeast Woodlands region is (comprised, sorted, grouped, organized) of approximately 70 indigenous groups, some of which are (called, specified, organized, comprised) into yet smaller groups.

Module 3 Paragraphs II: Slide 1 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting Screen 12

Exercise name: Defining and classifying

Exercise type: Unscramble words

Copyright info

Instruction: Place the words and phrases in each sentence into the correct order.

[Musical instruments] [in a modern] [symphony orchestra] [can] [be] [classified] [into] [4 groups].

[The companies] [surveyed can] [be] [divided[ [into] [three large sets] [based] [on] [the business sector] [in which] [they] [operate].

[The soil samples] [are] [sorted] [according] [to] [their] [ph values].

[These minute] [organisms] [are] [known] [as] [microscopic plankton].

[The unit] [of measurement] [of electrical inductance] [is] [called] [a henry].

[Nuclear fusion] [is] [characterized] [by] [the bonding] [of nuclei] [of the same polarity] [to create] [a heavier nucleus].

Module 3 Paragraphs II: Slide 1 New Module Title: Major and minor signposting Screen 13

Exercise name: Conclusion

Exercise type: Input screen

In this module you have read about and practiced major and minor signposting. Elements which have been covered include:

-Signposting or transitioning

Major signposting

Minor signposting, including sequencing, exemplifying

Minor signposting of defining and classifying


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