Academic Writing Tips: The Meaning Of A Cause And Effect Essay

A cause and effect essay is one where you either focus on the causes or the effects of your thesis. You might, for example, explain that the causes of addiction are the chemical changes that take place in your brain, or you might write about the effects of internet use. Either way, you need an outline.

With a good outline you will be able to make sure that you have equal amounts of evidence for each of your points and that you have the right order for your information. When you first draft your outline you may find that the order does not feel right. You might not like the chronological representation that you have and you may prefer to switch it around so that you present your strongest argument all the way down to your weakest or vice versa. When you draft an outline using a computer word processing program you have the ability to simply copy and paste the information, moving around whole sections until you find a presentation and order which works best for you.

  • With a solid outline in place you have the tools you need to craft an excellent essay. Some people prefer to craft their outline so that it is complete with full sentences and upon completion looks very similar to a final essay. If you choose to go with this route you will have limited writing necessary when you sit down to craft your first draft. Other people like to simply jot down bullet points with fragmented sentences for their outline after which the majority of the writing takes place during the first draft writing process.
  • When you sit down to write your essay regardless of the length and fullness of your outline, you want to start with whatever section is readiest. Many students are under the incorrect impression that the introduction must be finished first because it is the first part of the essay but this is far from the truth. As the writer you have complete control it is your essay and you can choose to write whatever section you want in whatever order you want. All that matters is that the sections or eventually completed and in the right order before you submit the final project. If one of your body paragraphs is ready to be written then write that first. Many students come back to the introduction last.

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