Today’s word from the academic word list is
This is one of the most formal words in the Academic Word List and one that, I believe, needs to be used with extreme care. Very often your writing will be better for using “plainer” language that is easier for the reader to understand. Put another way, the word is increasingly “old-fashioned” and it looks strange unless the rest of your writing is similarly formal.
It is most often used as an adverb to start a sentence or clause and show a connection with what you have just written. Used in this way it is similar in meaning to thus/therefore
hence = for this reason = therefore
This is a usage that I do not personally recommend. Look at this sentence
Many governments have failed to invest in education; hence standards in schools are falling.
My personal preference would be for
The falling standards in schools has been caused by the governments’ failure to invest in education
The failure of governments to invest in education has led to the fall in standards in many schools
Why do I prefer these? The causal connection is much clearer. The language is clearer.
hence = from now
This is a slightly different (and more accurate) usage. Look at these examples:
five years hence
This means the same as
in five years time