This mini-lesson is one I strive to drive home with my honors freshmen at the beginning of the year. It is a mistake I see consistently early on and work to diminish the confusion. It is one of those tricky pair of words that makes us stop and think. I have made the definition of each as succinct as possible to hopefully eliminate question:
Affect vs. Effect
Affect means “to produce a change in” or “to influence.”
EXAMPLE: Poor soil may affect the plants.
Effect means “the result.”
EXAMPLE: We won’t know the effect until the plants come up after winter.
And there you have it . . .
GG Bonus: An easy way to remember the difference between effect and affect is to use the mnemonic device: RAVEN “Remember Affect is a Verb and Effect is a Noun”