This Week’s Grammar Mailbox question is:

How does affect differ from effect?


The answer is actually fairly straightforward.

Affect is a verb that means “to influence.” Though effect can be a verb in some formal contexts, it is usually used as a noun. As a noun, it means “a result.”


The barking of the neighbor’s dog affects my ability to concentrate. The barking of the neighbor’s dog has a curious effect on my ability to concentrate.


Now try to place the correct word in the following sentences.

1. Wars _______________ everybody, and their destructive _______________ last for generations.

2. Television has a strong _______________ on public opinion.

3. My mood can _______________ my thinking, too.

4. I see that you’re trying to _______________ apathy, but I know that you really do care.

5. Falling on my head had a bad _______________ on my memory.

6. His years of smoking have negatively ____________ed his health.

7. This plan will surely ______________ significant improvements in our productivity.

8. The patient shows normal ______________ and appears to be psychologically stable.

9. The principal’s new rules _______________ the school.

10. Supply and demand have a direct ________________ on the prices of commodities.

Write your answers in the comments sections. We will reveal the correct answers in our next post!

Last weeks challenge:

This College provides students with accommodation where they can get familiar with each other in a casual way?
Have you considered joining the Student Union, or even becoming one of their Committee Members?
This could become a dead business in the foreseeable future. Therefore, the related major was not preferred by college students.
Students can check the updated school calendar at the beginning of each semester.
The forty politicians were debating this government policy for weeks but all I heard were arguments and interruptions in the meetings.
In the first month of the separation, the baby panda showed considerable resistance to her natural habitat, as if it had been a foreign environment. Now she is finally leading an independent life.
It is such a bizarre occurrence that this friendly occasion could have embarrassed him when he always seemed so thick-skinned.