Using Types of Conjunctive Adverbs

Instructor: Margaret Stone

Margaret has taught both college and high school English and has a master's degree in English.

Conjunctive adverbs are words used to connect ideas and to describe. You've probably been using these words all along, and this lesson will provide you with tips on using and punctuating sentences that contain conjunctive adverbs.

What Are Conjunctive Adverbs?

Conjunctive adverbs are connecting words. They join only independent or main clauses, which are phrases that can stand alone as sentences and that express a complete thought. Conjunctive adverbs are not used to connect single words, phrases, or other types of clauses. Conjunctive adverbs also modify, or describe, while they join independent clauses.


Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctive adverbs include:

  • accordingly
  • furthermore
  • however
  • therefore
  • thus

There are many other conjunctive adverbs in addition to this list.

Using Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctive adverbs can perform many different functions. The following is a partial list that reflects the wide variety of jobs conjunctive adverbs can do.

To add or show sequence

  • Also
  • Besides
  • Finally
  • Furthermore
  • Moreover

To compare

  • Likewise
  • Similarly

To give examples or illustrate

  • Indeed

To indicate time

  • Meanwhile
  • Subsequently

To show cause or effect

  • Accordingly
  • Hence
  • Then
  • Therefore
  • Thus


Conjunctive adverbs frequently connect independent or main clauses, and when they do, there are two correct ways to punctuate the sentence.

We could separate the two clauses with a period to form two separate sentences.


  • Many people refuse to give up the fatty foods that can cause serious health problems. Consequently, our local hospital offers classes on maintaining a healthy diet.

In this case, there are two independent clauses, and we have placed the conjunctive adverb (consequently) at the beginning of the second sentence. Since the conjunctive adverb in our example is used to introduce the sentence, we have placed a comma after it.

We could also separate the two clauses with a semicolon (;). Note again, the conjunctive adverb is followed by a comma.

  • The cost of fresh vegetables has been rising steadily for several years; moreover, this trend will probably continue in the future.

Placement in Sentences

Conjunctive adverbs can be placed at the beginning, middle, or end of a clause. We can use conjunctive adverbs in any of the following places.

At the beginning of an independent clause and joined to another independent clause

  • The increased time devoted to after-school jobs is not the only cause of the decline in students' reading ability; however, it is one of the important causes.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create An Account