It is correct to begin sentences with the word “other” in formal and informal writing. However, there are several different functions of “other” to start a sentence. E.g., “Other than my brother, nobody else came.” or “Some days are easy. Other days are a struggle.”
The words that appear after “other” determine how it works at the start of a sentence.
For example, you use “other than” to indicate contrast or similarity between two objects, activities, or states.
- Other than me, my cat doesn’t really like people.
- I cleaned the house. Other than that, I haven’t done much today.
Also, you can use “other” followed by a noun as a continuation of the previous sentence.
- He always shouts inappropriate comments. Other people, however, know how to behave.
Furthermore, you can also combine “other” with words such as “ways” or “methods.” These words, combined with “other,” allow you to state alternative ways of doing things.
- Politicians go on a charm offensive before elections. Other ways of influencing voters include social media ads.
Now we’ve covered the basics of starting sentences with “other.” Keep reading to learn more about using “other” at the beginning of a sentence and discover alternatives to use in formal writing.
Can You Start a Sentence With “Other” in Formal Writing?
It is acceptable and common to start sentences with “other” in academic writing.
When writing a formal essay, there are several situations in which you may want to use “other” to start a sentence or paragraph.
The two most common ways to use “other” in formal writing are:
- Other than
- Other + Plural noun
For instance, using the term “other than” to show contrast or similarity between characteristics or objects. In this sense, “other than” can mean “in addition to.”
- Other than plundering gold, the Spanish Empire was responsible for destroying Mayan scientific literature.
However, “other than” can also mean something similar to “except for.”
- Other than his sales record, there is little to be impressed about his performance as a supervisor.
You can also use “other” with plural nouns at the start of formal sentences to highlight different “methods” of doing something.
- Face-to-face interviews were deemed the best option. Other options included postal and internet surveys.
Are you looking for another word to use instead of “other” at the beginning of a sentence? Here are some synonyms you can use instead of the word “other:”
- Apart from
- Except for
Below, you can find a few example sentences showing you how to use these synonyms in context.
- Apart from the test, the rest of the project was a success.
- There were no alternative options available to complete the task.
Although it is fine to start sentences with “other” in academic writing, it is also common to use an alternative, such as the ones we listed above.
Can You Start a Sentence With “Other” in Informal Writing?
You can start sentences with “other” in informal writing. You will commonly see “other” starting sentences in both informal messages and work-related emails.
A common way to use “other” at the beginning of a sentence in informal English is with the phrase “other than.”
In the below sentence, “other than” means “except for” or “apart from.”
- Other than Friday, what day are you free?
However, in this sentence, although the difference is slight, “other than” is more similar to “as well as”
- Other than the high salary, I like the fact that I have promotion opportunities.
You can also use “other” followed by a noun to continue an idea from the previous sentence.
- Some people do not say what they think. Other people have the opposite problem.
Finally, people often combine “other” with words like “ways” or “options” to introduce alternatives.
- You should pre-boil the potatoes. Other options include microwaving them for 3 minutes.
In conclusion, you can use “other” in both formal and informal contexts. What is important is that the rest of your sentence is written in a tone of voice that fits the context you’re in.