Linking devices, cause and effect

دوره: گرامر انگلیسی در شش دقیقه / اپیزود 40

گرامر انگلیسی در شش دقیقه

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Linking devices, cause and effect

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Neil prefers paper books to e-books. Find out why and learn some useful phrases for talking about cause and effect in this episode of 6 Minute Grammar.

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Neil Hello! Welcome to 6 Minute Grammar with me Neil.

Catherine And me, Catherine. Hello.

Neil In this show we’re talking about linking devices.

Catherine Yes, linking devices. There are lots of different kinds, but today we’re interested in words and phrases that link a cause - that’s something that happens - with its effect or result.

Neil
So words and phrases like therefore, for that reason and because of. We’ll tell you how they work…

Catherine …We’ll give you lots of examples…

Neil …And we’ll finish off with a quiz to check what you’ve learnt.

Catherine So here we go. Let’s start with an example. So Neil, do you prefer e-books or paper books?

Neil Well, I have to say, I’m a bit old fashioned: I like a good paper book.

Catherine
Why’s that then?

Neil
It just feels more authentic.

Catherine OK, well, we’re going to talk today, actually, about e-books, so can you give us an example sentence about e-books. Come on then Neil…

Neil E-books are increasingly popular. There has been a fall in sales of paper books .

Catherine Except to you Neil. Now those two sentences are OK. But we could make them a lot clearer and more interesting by linking the ideas in them together with a word like consequently , like this.

Neil E-books are increasingly popular. Consequently, there has been a fall in sales of paper books.

Catherine Consequently is a very useful linking word. It shows that the event before the word consequently is the cause of the event after it. We could also use the words therefore, as a result, for that reason, thus or that’s why. They all mean the same as consequently . And they are all used to join the ideas in two sentences or main clauses together.

Neil Although remember that some are more formal than others. We use that’s why a lot in informal everyday English.

Catherine I missed the bus and that’s why I’m late.

Neil Good example Catherine: it would sound wrong to say I missed the bus and therefore I’m late . Now can you give us an example of a more formal use of linking devices?

Catherine OK, try this one: There was a lot of opposition to the proposal; therefore, it was dropped.

Neil Nice one. You can use consequently and thus instead of therefore in this type of sentence.

Catherine That’s right. Now let’s look at a group of words and phrases that we use to link cause and effect in a slightly different way.

Neil Some examples are: because of, as a result of, due to and owing to . Listen.

Catherine Due to the increasing popularity of e-books, there has been a fall in sales of paper books.

Neil So how is that different? Well, due to is followed by a noun phrase - the increasing popularity of e-books - not a complete sentence or main clause. We could also say due to e-books increasing in popularity. That’s a participle clause.

Catherine So due to joins a noun phrase or a participle clause to the main clause in the sentence.

Neil Exactly. And as a result of, owing to or because of do too. We could use any of these in that example because they mean the same as due to . But because of is less formal than the others.

Catherine That’s right, and we could also put the sentence the other way round, like this Neil.

Neil There has been a fall in sales of paper books due to the increasing popularity of e-books.

Neil Yes, it just depends which part of the sentence you want to emphasize by putting first.

IDENT You’re listening to BBC Learning English.

Catherine And we’re looking at linking devices of cause and effect.

Neil Now for a couple of tips. When you start a sentence, in writing, with a noun phrase, be sure to use a comma after it.

Catherine So As a result of the fall in paper book sales, (comma) some bookshops are struggling to stay open.

Neil That’s right. But don’t use a comma if the noun phrase comes at the end.

Catherine And if we’re using a verb phrase, we can introduce it with the phrase the fact that.

Neil Yes. You could say As a result of the fact that book sales have fallen, some bookshops are struggling to stay open.

Catherine That’s right.

Neil And now it’s quiz time! Complete these sentences. Number 1. Our climate is changing a) due to the Arctic ice is melting. b) therefore the Arctic ice is melting.

Catherine The answer’s b) therefore the Arctic ice is melting.

Neil Well done! Number 2. Lewis was promoted a) for that reason his hard work. b) as a result of his hard work.

Catherine It’s b) as a result of his hard work.

Neil Very good! Number 3. The accident happened a) owing to the fog on the motorway. b) owing to the fog was on the motorway.

Catherine This time it’s a) owing to the fog on the motorway.

Neil Well done indeed! I hope wherever you are, you listened carefully to the show and as a result you got all the answers right.

Catherine That’s good and there’s more about this on our website at bbclearningenglish.com. Join us again for more 6 Minute Grammar.

Both Bye.

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