Affect or Effect - Which do I Use?


The difference between affect and effect is so slippery that people have started using "impact" as a verb instead. However, if you want to stick with affect or effect, the following might help.



Most of the time, you'll want affect as a verb. - Meaning to influence something or make a difference.


Affect as a verb, usually means produce an effect or influence on.

Affect can also mean, roughly, to act in a way that can't be felt, as in.


Affect as a noun is mostly used as related to psychology, emotion, desire, and infuence on behavior and actions.



Use effect for a result, consequence, and impression. (noun). Sometimes people replace effect with impression to avoid having to decide which noun (affect or effect) to use.

Effect has a lot of subtle meanings as a noun.

However, the meaning of a result - seems to be at the heart of most definitions.


Effect as a noun.


Effect as a verb means - being about. Defense effected the outcome of the game.


Raven as a mnemonic to remember: affect as a verb and effect as a noun.

Because raven has the letters A-V-E-N, to stand forĀ ... Affect: Verb Effect: Noun



Dr. Robert Sweetland's notes
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