Cause and Effect Writing

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Cause and Effect Writing. English 1 Prof. Federle. Cause and Effect analyzes why something happens. Some effects are caused by multiple causes. Some causes, in turn, can result in multiple effects. Main cause: the most important cause Contributory Causes: less important - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • Cause and Effect WritingEnglish 1Prof. Federle

  • Cause and Effect analyzes why something happens.Some effects are caused by multiple causes.Some causes, in turn, can result in multiple effects.

  • Main cause: the most important causeContributory Causes: less importantImmediate Cause: closely precedes the effect.Remote cause: less obvious because it involves something in the past or far away.Causal Chain: an effect can be the cause to another effect, on so on.

  • Avoiding Post Hoc Reasoning:Do not assume that just because even A precedes event B, event A caused even B. This illogical assumption is called post hoc reasoning. This error leads you to confuse coincidence with causality.

  • Do not confuse words like because, therefore and consequently (indicating a causal relationship), with words like subsequently, later, and afterward (chronological relationship words)

  • Exercise: Global Warming1) Listen to the following report, originally presented on NPRs news program, Morning Edition on February 17, 2006. 2) as you listen, answer the questions as they appear on the screen.3) Afterwards, we will brainstorm the possible chain of cause and effect contributing to this issue.

  • NOTE TAKING WORKSHEETStudy: Greenland Ice Sheet Melting Faster Than Thought February 17, 2006 from National Public Radios Morning EditionWhy are researchers interested in Greenlands icecap? What are two opposing processes mentioned by Rignot that might either cause the icecap to melt, or to replenish it? What is actually happening? According to Harris, how fast is Greenland now losing ice? What is the effect?According to Rignot, what was the previous time scale for the loss of ice from Greenland? What is it now?

  • NOTE TAKING WORKSHEETStudy: Greenland Ice Sheet Melting Faster Than Thought February 17, 2006 from National Public Radios Morning EditionAccording to Konrad Steffan, what process is causing the acceleration of the loss of Greenland ice? Describe it. How fast is the glacier moving now?According to Steffan, what are the effects of this rapid melting? What problems might these effects, in turn, cause?According to Steffan, are these processes fully understood? Does he feel that the data is certain?

  • Main cause: the most important causeContributory Causes: less importantImmediate Cause: closely precedes the effect.Remote cause: less obvious because it involves something in the past or far away.Causal Chain: an effect can be the cause to another effect, on so on.

  • Planning a Cause and Effect EssayPurpose and Thesis:Be sure to identify the relationships among the specific causes and effect you will discuss.Thesis statement should tell the readerThe points you plan to considerThe position you will takeWhether you will emphasize causes, effects, or both.The cause and/or effect you consider most important.The order in which you will treat your points.

    Planning a Cause and Effect Essay

  • Order and sequence; several possibilities include:ChronologicalMain cause first, and then contributory causesContributory causes first, and then main cause.Negative effects first, then positiveFirst dismiss events that are not causes, and then discuss actual causes for an effect.Most obvious causes first, and then less obvious causes.

    Planning a Cause and Effect Essay

  • Transitions!Transitions are essential to this type of essay to distinguish causes from effects.For a useful list of cause and effect transitions, see page 43.

    Planning a Cause and Effect Essay

  • Structuring a Cause and Effect EssayFinding CausesLess important cause > effect> most important causeDescribing or Predicting EffectsCause > first effect> second effect > third (most important) effect> conclusion (with possible prediction of additional effects).

  • Revising a Cause and Effect EssaySee checklist on page 312Editing a Cause and Effect EssayAvoid redundant phrases like the reason is because examples p 313Use Affect and Effect correctly. Examples p 313Editing checklist on page 314

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