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Home » Module 2 Unit 4: Reporting evidence » Strategy 4: Using concessive clauses - page 2/8
Unit 1:  About sourcesUnit 2: Evaluating sourcesUnit 3: Quoting & paraphrasingUnit 4: Reporting evidenceUnit 5: Referencing

Order of information when using concessive clauses

Concessive conjunctions always require at least two clauses. This is because they bring together two (or more) pieces of information in a contrastive relationship to each other.

Generally, the information, evidence or argument you wish to endorse is positioned in the part of the sentence that does not contain the concessive clause.

Having the part of the sentence that does not contain the concessive clause positioned second has an advantage – it becomes the information most likely to be followed up and developed in subsequent sentences. It is logical to make it the focus of further argument or elaboration.

Note: Using but or other contrastive conjunctions (e.g. instead, however) will not achieve the same effect. Conjunctions like but contrast two pieces of information but they do not weight them - they do not foreground or background either piece of information. If you use them, your reader will therefore not be able to see which piece of evidence you value more.

Want to refresh your understanding of conjunctions?  
Conjunctions create relationships between pieces of information. Different types of conjunction create different kinds of relationships, for example:
  • the conjunction and adds one piece of information to another
  • the conjunction but contrasts one piece of information with another
  • the conjunction because shows a causal relationship between one piece of information and another
  • the conjunction if shows that one piece of information is conditional on another piece of information

When you use a concessive conjunction, you must have two clauses in your sentence. A sentence with a concessive conjunction and only one clause is an incomplete and unacceptable sentence.



Whereas co-educational schools achieve superior social outcomes.


Whereas co-educational schools achieve superior social outcomes, single sex schools produce better academic results.

Need to refresh your understanding of correct sentence structure?

Go to Module 1, Unit 1: Sentence Fragments and Module 1, Unit 2: Run-on Sentences