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Writing Style

Sentence Types: How To Join Clauses

A basic clause contains a subject, a verb, and an object or subject complement.

There are four patterns for clauses.

Simple Sentences (i.e., clauses) can be joined in different ways.

Compound Sentence

A Compound Sentence contains two simple sentences joined with a Coordinating Conjunction (FANBOYS).

Use "and " to show additional information or ideas.

Example: Hamad Hospital provides a high quality of care for its patients, and it aims to reach higher. 

Use "but " to show contrast.

Example: The patient stated that she took a pain reliever, but it did not work.

Use "so" to show cause and effect..

Example: The patient forgot he had an allergy to antibiotics, so he suffered a skin rash.

Use "or" to show alternatives.

Example:A stronger dose might make her become addicted to the medicationor she may develop physical dependency.

Complex Sentence

Join an Independent Clause and a Dependent Clause with a Subordinating Conjunction (SC).

Example: This model has also been used in other medical fields even though it was developed for nursing.

                  I saw the patient laughing though she was still in considerable pain from the operation.     

Adding a SC at the beginning creates a Dependent Cause joined by a comma (,) to an Independent Clause.

Example: Even though it was developed for nursing, this model has also been used in other medical fields.

                 Although the lady in the third scenario was screaming, I still felt much more positive about her condition.

Transitional Word or Phrase

Use a transitional word or phrase (T) to join two Independent Clauses.


Use a semi-colon, followed by a transitional word or phrase (T), then by a comma. (; + Transitional word/phrase +,)

Example: The nurse assumed the patient knew how to use it; however, the patient had forgotten what to do.

More Information
"Five Basic Structures of Simple Sentences", The University of Montana

"Kinds of Sentences", Towson University

"Understanding Clauses and How to Connect Them," Valencia College