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  1. #1

    Difference between 'impact' and 'effect'?


    Does anyone know of a good way to explain the difference between these two nouns:



    Are there times when you could use one, but not the other?

    Any examples or explanations would be greatly appreciated.



    • Join Date: May 2007
    • Posts: 72

    Re: Difference between 'impact' and 'effect'?

    Do not confuse the words affect, effect, and impact, each of which can be used both as a verb and as a noun. Avoid incorrectly using impact as a verb in place of affect or as a noun in place of effect.

    Affect as a verb means "to influence."
    Affect as a noun has a specialized meaning in medicine and psychology, referring to moods and feeling as distinct from thoughts or knowledge.

    Effect as a verb means "to bring about, to produce," or to "accomplish something."
    Effect as a noun means "result."

    Impact as a verb means "strike with a blow" or "to pack firmly together."
    Impact as a noun means "a collision."

    Do not use impact as a verb in place of "to affect", do not use impact as a noun in place of "effect."

    I am not a teacher!

    • Join Date: May 2007
    • Posts: 404

    Re: Difference between 'impact' and 'effect'?

    Then, why do you answer if you are not a teacher?

    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434

    Re: Difference between 'impact' and 'effect'?

    impact also has the meaning of a marked effect or influence: The Beatles had a major impact on the pop music world.

    effect has several meanings :

    a change which is a result or consequence of an action or other cause. The discovery of penicillin had a major effect on medical treatments
    2 the state of being or becoming operative. The Act will take effect next month.
    3 the extent to which something succeeds or is operative: wind power can be used to great effect.
    (effects) personal belongings.
    (effects) the lighting, sound, or scenery used in a play or film.
    6 Physics a physical phenomenon, typically named after its discoverer.


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