Quick Tip 8: affect和effect

Both “affect” and “effect” are common words in scientific writing. Do you know the difference?

This distinction is confusing because both affect and effect can sometimes be both a noun and a verb. However, most of the time you only see affect as a verb and effect as a noun.

An “effect” is a result. The verb “affect” means to have an influence on.

Let’s look at some examples from scientific writing.

Several types of bias might have affected the results of this study.

There the verb affect was used to say that the bias might have influenced or affected the study results.

Clinical trials have not demonstrated a consistent or convincing beneficial effect.

There “effect” was a noun. The author was describing the result or effect of clinical trials.