Choosing between two similar words can be daunting, especially when they’re similar in meaning. But with the right knowledge and a keen eye (and maybe a trick or two), you’ll be able to distinguish one from the other easily.
Affect and effect sound way too alike. Despite this, the two of them have very different uses.
Affect with an a is a verb that means “to influence something.”
Your academic standing can affect your scholarship.
Effect with an e is mostly used as noun, which means “a result.”
Your academic standing can have an effect on your scholarship.
An effect is something that happens when one object affects another. See the difference? Good. In very rare cases, the roles can be switched. Affect can be a noun, and effect can also be a verb.
Affect can be a noun when used in describing a facial expression or mood.
You seem to have a melancholic affect today.
Effect is used as a verb to describe something that was caused.
The president wants to effect change on the criminal law system.
Again, those are very rarely used. So going back to the original thought, there’s an easy trick that can help you remember the difference. When you’re confused about which one to use, think RAVEN. Drop the R and you’re left with A-V-E-N.
Affect, Verb. Effect, Noun.
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