Comparing and contrasting

Comparing and contrasting ideas can be difficult. Different structures are possible. For example, we can compare and contrast using conjunctions, transitional adverbs and phrases. The grammar is different.


To compare ideas, you can use the following structures.


Similarly, likewise, in the same way, also


Like, alike, similar, equal, comparable


Compare to, resemble, fit, match, mirror, reinforce, reflect etc.

To express contrast, you can use the following adverbs and transitional verbs: In contrast, on the other hand, however.

The conjunctions though, although and but are also possible.

You must also pay attention to the structure of your sentences.


A transitional adverb goes between separate sentences.

  • Some people want a new system. However, not everybody agrees.

A dependent conjunction joins a dependent clause to an independent clause.

Two patterns are possible.

Conjunction + subject + verb, subject + verb

Subject + verb + conjunction + subject + verb…

Although he is a post graduate in physics, he can’t even change a bulb.


He can’t even change a bulb although he is a post graduate in physics.

Coordinating conjunctions join independent clauses.

Subject + verb + conjunction + subject + verb

He is a post graduate in English, but he can’t even change a bulb.

A prepositional phrase normally comes at the beginning of the sentence if the phrase is an adverb.

Prepositional phrase, subject + verb

Subject + verb + prepositional phrase

Unlike his brother, Stephen is quite interested in their family business.