Cause and Effect Essay Help

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Cause and Effect Essay Help

A cause and effect essay (also known as casual analysis) tries to establish the relationship between an event and its consequences. The writer begins by explaining what happened or happens and proceeds to explain the repercussions. A good example of a sentence that illustrates cause and effect is, “If people continue to engage in uncontrolled deforestation, the world will experience dramatic climatic changes and millions of species will lose their natural habitat.” The cause and effect format of writing can apply to all kinds of topics provided the required conditions are met. For example, history students might be asked to write an essay concerning the effects of industrialization in the United States. Firstly, they must begin by defining industrialization and how it occurs and focus on its effects later. Alternatively, English students can be asked to write an essay on the importance of studying multiple languages. They must being by explaining the concept of studying different languages and tie it with the resulting benefits.

Sometimes understanding the cause and effect essay format can be confusing. However, its foundation is simply a situation that occurred in the past or is likely to take place in the future. In every situation, there are reasons that lead to its occurrence (causes) and consequences that result from its occurrence (effects).  There are two types of cause and effect essays and they include; essays that focus on causes, and effects essays. In the former, the writer chooses to focus on the causes whereas in the later, the author concentrates on the effects. In some cases, there are cause and effect essays that cover both areas. This approach is not the best especially when writing a short essay. It can lead to omission of important details.

The Format of a Cause and Effect Essay

The basic format of a cause and effect essay features the title, introduction, body, and conclusion. Normally, writers are required to use a straight-forward title that summarizes the details of the essay. The introduction paragraph provides an analysis of the situation under discussion in details. For example, if the essay is about the effects of World War I, the introduction should concentrate on World War I. The author should introduce the concept in a brief but compelling manner. This allows the reader to acquire basic knowledge on the topic under discussion. Therefore, a good introduction should introduce the subject, provide background information, and explain the focus of the essay to the reader (This can be causes, effects, or both). The introduction section should end with a thesis statement.  The thesis statement provides a summary of the causes or effects depending on the nature of the essay. The points summarized in the thesis statement make up different paragraphs in the body section. It is important to note that the thesis statement should be clear and very specific. Mistakes in the thesis statement can affect the entire essay.

The body section should have multiple paragraphs explaining causes, effects, or both.  Each paragraph should begin with a topic sentences. All topic sentences support the thesis statement. Each topic sentence should be developed fully with valuable explanations and evidence. Conclusion is the last part of a cause and effect essay. Its purpose is to reaffirm the thesis statement and summarize important details of the essay.

Transition words and phrases foster the coherence of a cause and effect essay. They make the flow of the essay smooth from one sentence to another. Examples of such words include; consequently, however, as a result, accordingly, and as a consequence.

Cause and effect analysis is commonly confused with process analysis especially when it covers both causes and effects in one essay. The key to understanding the main difference between the two is looking at foundation of their structure. Whereas cause and effect analysis concentrates on reasons and consequences, process thinking emphasizes on sequence in which events occur.


Preparation for Writing a Cause and Effect Essay

Preparing before writing any kind of an essay is very important.  It allows a writer to gather important knowledge on the dos and don’ts of the essay.

Select the topic:  In most cases, instructors provide the topic. However, there are situations where students are required to make the choice. A good topic should not be too narrow or too wide. A narrow topic can make your essay shallow because of lack of content whereas a wide topic is only suitable for lengthy essays.

Write an outline: Gather all the necessary materials and begin to write an outline. Materials are the resources used to provide support in the essay.  They include scholarly books, articles, and videos among others. The first step of an outline is creating the thesis statement. The thesis statement determines the nature of your essay.  It should clearly show whether it is a cause, effects, or cause and effects essay.  Since the thesis statement captures the main points, the best approach is to list them from the least to the most important. An essay should sound more convincing as it grows in length. The thesis statement should establish a direct link between the situation and the causes or/and effects.

The thesis statement should be followed by a list of topic sentences for each paragraph. Below each topic sentence, summarize the ideas or sub-points that support the main argument. The last part of the outline is a conclusion that restates the thesis statement and summarizes the main ideas of the essay.