Grammar Guide: Conjunctions

A conjunction is the part of speech that connects ideas in sentences. Conjunctions can connect words, phrases, or even clauses in a sentence. There are three types of conjunctions: coordinating conjunctions, subordinating conjunctions, and correlative conjunctions. Although all of these types of conjunctions connect ideas in sentences, they each have different functions.

Coordinating Conjunctions
Coordinating conjunctions are some of the first conjunctions people master when learning a language. The English coordinating conjunctions can be remembered by the acronym FANBOYS: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so. These conjunctions can connect words, phrases, and independent clauses.

We will go skiing and snowboarding this weekend.
You may buy apples or oranges at the store.

Alice enjoys playing on the beach but not swimming in the water.
The plane flew over the ocean and into the clouds.

Jeremy passed all of his classes, but Amy did not.
I do not like pasta, nor do I like pizza.

Subordinating Conjunctions
Subordinating conjunctions connect a dependent clause to an independent clause. These conjunctions also tell how the two clauses are related. Clauses can be related through time, cause and effect, contrast, or condition.

After I arrived home, I ate dinner.
Scott will study English until he speaks fluently.

Cause and Effect
Nancy is getting a job because she needs money.

Janet has long hair whereas Bill has short hair.
Although he didn't like soccer, Chad enjoyed playing with his friends anyway.

I will do the dishes if you sweep the floor.

Correlative Conjunctions
Correlative conjunctions are pairs of words that are used together to link two ideas together. These types of conjunctions are always used in pairs to show the equivalence of the two ideas. The most common correlative conjunctions are both...and, either...or, neither...nor, not only...but also, and whether...or

Both my brother and my sister dislike carrots.
We can either play football or basketball.
Neither Alex nor Jane owns a car.
Not only do we teach English but we also teach math.
Whether it rains or not, we are having a picnic.

To learn more about conjunctions or how to connect ideas, study with us at Nomen Global!

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