Difference between Effected and Affected

Key Difference: Effect is the result or outcome of a cause. On the other hand, affect is to have an influence on or to alter. It also means to aim for; to act in emotions; or to try to obtain.

There is often confusion over the words: effect and affect. In order to understand which to use and when it should be used, one must know the difference between a noun and a verb. This is because effect is a noun; whereas, affect is a verb. However, there are tricks to get around this.

Dictionary.com defines ‘Effect’ as:

  • Something that is produced by an agency or cause; result; consequence: Exposure to the sun had the effect of toughening his skin.
  • Power to produce results; efficacy; force; validity; influence: His protest had no effect.
  • The state of being operative or functional; operation or execution; accomplishment or fulfillment: to bring a plan into effect.
  • A mental or emotional impression produced, as by a painting or a speech.
  • Meaning or sense; purpose or intention: She disapproved of the proposal and wrote to that effect.

Effected is usually a noun and it is the outcome of anything. Effect is something that produces or creates something specific. A good synonym of effect is ‘result’.

Some of the examples of effect are given below:

  • The law effected (resulted in) an alteration in their legal status.
  • When she was CEO, she effected (created) several important changes.
  • What effect did foot-and-mouth disease have on your business?
  • By bringing brownies to class, I effected a cheerier affect in my students. (It resulted in a cheerier affect)
  • The best way to effect change is to work with the existing stakeholders.

Dictionary.com defines ‘Affect’ as:

  • To act on; produce an effect or change in: Cold weather affected the crops.
  • To impress the mind or move the feelings of: The music affected him deeply.
  • (of pain, disease, etc.) To attack or lay hold of.

Affect is a verb and it is something to change or influence. Affect also is to refer to feelings and desires as factors in thought or conduct.

Some of the examples of affect are given below:

  • The experience affected me deeply.
  • The heat of the sunlight affected the speed of the chemical reaction.
  • He was deeply affected by the themes in the play.
  • Over time, these cycles affect personality development.
  • In my experience, teachers' opinions don't affect the students.
  • I hope their grades are not affected by their performance.

Since, affect and effect generally stick to specific grammatical roles; readers can often know which one to choose by identifying the word's purpose in a sentence.

When one AFFECTS something, one produces an EFFECT on it.

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