Affect or Effect

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Which is the correct usage of the word “effect” (or “Affect”): the paperwork necessary to EFFECT the assignment or AFFECT the assignment.

To “effect” means to “bring about or accomplish.” It has a sense of completion. This would be the usage if the paperwork was necessary to complete the assignment. This is probably the correct usage in your case. This is when we use “effect” as a verb. But “effect” is usually used as a noun.

To “affect” means to influence or change. This would be the usage if the paperwork had influence on the outcome or course of the assignment but was not a requirement for completion of the assignment. We normally use “affect” as a verb, but it can be also used as a noun.

I like to advise people to keep it simple: use “effect” as a noun. Use “affect” as a verb. But life is not always simple.

One can “effect” change, which means to accomplish something, as above. But normally we write about the “effect” of something. That’s the noun form.

And “affect” is usually a verb, but when it means a feeling or emotional state, it is a noun. He has an affect of boredom. (He acts bored.)

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