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Improve your English: know the difference between “affect” and “effect” 

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In a recent article, we wrote about the difference between improve and improvise and how to use these two similar terms appropriately. Continuing this series on using similar-sounding English words correctly, let us consider the use of the words “affect” and “effect”. 

Both terms  mean “impact” or “result” of something, but their usage  varies depending on the context in which they are being used.

 

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Affect

The word “affect” is generally used in the context of “how” or whether something impacts you. The following examples  should explain this better.

 

  • Does the new tax regulation affect you?
  • How will Raj’s resignation affect the work in the team?
  • I don’t think the change in weather affects me at all.

 

 

Effect

The word “effect” on the other hand is generally used in the context of answering the “what” of a result. Let us consider a few examples of sentences that use the word effect correctly.

 

  • We ensured that there would be no effect of the festive season on our campaigns.
  • What is the effect of global warming on agriculture in India?

 

The above question could also be written as: How does global warming affect agriculture in India?

 

Note how the two words have been used differently, even though the questions were quite similar in nature.

 

The word “effect” is also used when we are referring to something coming into force. For example:

 

  • The new guidelines will take effect from Jan 01, 2019.
  • Rail fares will go up with effect from Jan 01, 2019.

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Hope these examples help you to get a clear understanding of when to use affect and effect. Are there other English words that confuse you? Let us know through our Facebook page and we will try to address all your queries related to improving your English-speaking skills.

 

 

Related articles:

 

Common English grammar mistake: use of 'been' and 'being'

 

Common English Usage Differences: Bring versus Take

 

Difference between Sometimes, Sometime and Some Time

 

How to improve your vocabulary for entrance exams?

 

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