One of the most necessary abilities for students of the 'SekII' is to be able to write a good paragraph.
A paragraph is a series of sentences developing one topic.
The sentences in a paragraph should all be closely related to the main point. In addition, they should flow smoothly and naturally
from one to another. When they do, the paragraph is said to have coherence. At the end of this page you'll find a list of transitional
devices and direct references which help you to achieve coherence in a paragraph.
Next you'll read two paragraphs. One whose ideas are arranged in order of importance and the other whose
ideas are arranged spatially.
Americans came to regard the spoils system ('Futterkrippensystem', dh. Vergünstigungen bei pol. Ämtern)
as a stumbling block in the way of good government.
|= topic sentence
Rapid, large-scale changes of public officials made it difficult for the government to carry out
|= first idea
Men of ability hesitated to take jobs that might last only for a few years. The jobs themselves changed
as the nation developed.
|= more important idea
Most important, public positions came to require more and more skill. City, state, and national governments needed doctors,
chemists, engineers, and other trained people. Such public officials must be hired for their ability, not
for their loyalty to a political party.
|= most important idea
The farmhouse stood in the middle of a very large yard, and the yard was fenced on three sides with rails
and on the rear side with high palings. Against these stood the smoke house; beyond the palings was the orchard; beyond the orchard
were the tobacco fields. The front yard was entered over a stile made of sawed-off logs of graduated heights;
I do not remember any gate. In a corner of the front yard were a dozen lofty hickory trees and a dozen black
walnuts, and in the nutting season riches were to be gathered there.
|Objects 1-7 described in relation to each other (words in bold indicate spatial arrangement)
List of transitional devices and direct references:
as a result
as soon as
at the same time
for this reason
in spite of
in the first place
in the meantime
on the contrary
on the other hand
to begin with