Exploring actions and consequences... From Reading to Writing Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar traces the causes and consequences of ambition and hunger for power.
Exploring actions and consequences... Exploring causes and effects is crucial to understanding events in both literature and life. One way of examining these elements is by writing a cause-and-effect essay.
Exploring actions and consequences... You can use this type of informative writing to show why something happens, what its consequences are, or how events are connected.
B a s i c s i n a B o x Cause-and-Effect Essay at a Glance RUBRIC Standards for Writing A successful cause-and-effect essay should clearly identify the cause-and- effect relationship being discussed provide any necessary background information make the relationship between causes and effects clear arrange details logically and include transitions to show relationships between effects and causes use language and details appropriate to the intended audience summarize the cause-and-effect relationship in the conclusion Introduce the subject Introduction Body Describe the cause and its effects* cause effect Summary Conclusion
Happy the man who could search out the causes of things. Virgil, Roman poet Happy the man who could search out the causes of things. Virgil, Roman poet Writing Your Cause-and-Effect Essay
1 Prewriting n Begin by exploring topics for your essay. What events puzzle you? What consequences would you like to examine before choosing a course of action? n Make a list of ideas that occur to you. Be sure to choose a topic that truly interests and inspires you. n After you select a topic you would like to write about, follow these steps.
Planning Your Cause-and-Effect Essay 1. Think about the cause-and-effect relationships. Are the events really linked by cause-and-effect? An event that follows another in time isn’t necessarily caused by it. Does a cause have one effect or many? Is an effect the result of a single cause, or many causes? 2. Identify your audience. What does your audience already know about your subject? What background information will you need to provide?
Planning Your Cause-and-Effect Essay 3. Gather supporting information. What kind of information will you need to learn about your topic? How can you find that information? Possibilities include personal observation and reflection, library research, or interviewing experts. 4. Sketch out your ideas. How does the information you have collected fit together? You might create a table or chart to help you organize what you already know and discover what you still need to find out.
2 Drafting n Use the drafting process to explore your topic and to think more about the cause- and-effect relationships you want to write about. n Concentrate on just getting your ideas down on paper. You can revise them later. n Clearly state the cause-and-effect relationship you’re discussing. Writing Your Cause-and-Effect Essay
2 Drafting n Present facts, statistics, examples, anecdotes, and quotations to support your statements. n You will also need to organize your ideas. You might show a single cause leading to multiple effects or multiple causes leading to a single effect. Writing Your Cause-and-Effect Essay
3 Revising TARGET SKILL EFFECTIVE TRANSITIONS One way to be sure your cause-and-effect essay is clear is to use transitions that show the relationships between ideas. Words and phrases such as therefore, because, as a result of, before, and if... then signal causes and effects.
Writing Your Cause-and-Effect Essay 4343 Editing and Proofreading TARGET SKILL MISPLACED MODIFIERS Misplaced modifiers can make your cause-and- effect writing confusing because they appear to modify something they cannot logically modify. Correct a misplaced modifier by moving it next to the word it actually modifies or by adding a word for it to modify.