Topic: The effects of paid maternity leave
Guidelines for Writing the Cause/Effect Essay
Typed MLA formatted Cause/Effect essay, 800 words minimum
Plus typed MLA formatted Works Cited page
Must include in-text citations that identifies when you use the sources in the Works Cited page, at least one per body paragraph
I want one quote per paragraph, no paraphrased sources. I want all your citations to be in quote form.
Paper is to be written in third person
2 Sources, one must be peer reviewed and ALL need to come from a PVCC library database
Must concentrate on either causes or effects, but not both.
Must identify 3 causes or 3 effects, depending on your focus
Papers will be deducted 10 points for each missing requirement listed above. A grade of 0 to 40 will be issued for papers with no citations or works cited page.
Writing the Causal Analysis/Cause Effect Essay
The cause/effect essay can be split into four basic sections: introduction, body, conclusion and Works Cited page. There are also three basi formats for writing a cause/effect:
Single effect with multiple causes–air pollution is the effect, and students would identify several causes;
Single cause with multiple effects–bullying is the cause, and students would establish several effects it has on children;
Causal Chain–this is complicated, and I try to steer students away from this format. Causal chains show a series of causes and effects. For
example. dust storms between Tucson and Phoenix can be deadly causing a chain reaction of accidents. The dust is the initial catalyst. It
causes car A to stop. Car B crashes into Car A. Car C crashes into Car B., etc. Global Warming is a good example of a causal chain topic.
Population increase is causing an increase in traffic and greenhouse gases. It is also causing an increase in deforestation for housing, roads and farming. Deforestation means less plants to take up the CO2 and release O2 into the environment. Each item causes an effect. That effect causes another effect. All of this contributes to global warming.
The introduction introduces the reader to the topic. We’ve all heard that first impressions are important. This is very true in writing as well. The goal is to engage the readers, hook them so they want to read on. One way is to write a narrative. Topics like bullying or divorce hit home.
Beginning with a real case study highlights the issue for readers. This becomes an example that you can refer to throughout the paper. The final sentence in the introduction is usually the thesis statement.
Another way to introduce the topic is to ask a question or questions. What are the main causes of schizophrenia? Who is susceptible? The
student would then begin a brief discussion defining schizophrenia and explaining its significance. Once again, the final sentence would be a thesis statement introducing the main points that will be covered in the paper.
The body of the essay is separated into paragraphs. Each paragraph covers a single cause or effect. For example, according to the National
Institute of Mental Health, the two main causes of schizophrenia are genetic and environmental. Thus, if I was writing about the causes of
schizophrenia, then I would have a body paragraph on genetic causes of schizophrenia and a body paragraph on the environmental causes.
The global warming example would have separate paragraphs that explain each cause/effect relationship: population increases, increases in air pollution due to traffic exhaust and manufacturing, increases in food production and agriculture, deforestation, all causes for global warming and all intricately linked.
A body paragraph should include the following:
Topic sentence that identifies the topic for the paragraph,
Several sentences that describes the causal relationship,
Evidence from outside sources that corroborates your claim that the causal relationship exists,
MLA formatted in-text citations indicating which source listed on the Works Cited page has provided the evidence,
Quotation marks placed around any information taken verbatim (word for word) from the source,
Summary sentence(s) that draws conclusions from the evidence,
Remember: information from outside sources should be placed in the middle of the paragraph and not at the beginning or the end of the
Be sure and use transitions or bridge sentences between paragraphs.
Draw final conclusions from the key points and evidence provided in the paper;
Tie in the introduction. If you began with a story, draw final conclusions from that story;
If you began with a question(s), refer back to the question(s) and be sure to provide the answer(s).
Works Cited page
A Works Cited page is a type of bibliography that is formatted according to the Modern Language Association’s (MLA) guidelines;
Citations are double spaced and placed in alphabetical order by the author’s last name;
If there is no author, then the title is used;
The first line of each entry is placed on the left margin with subsequent lines of that entry indented a half inch.
Cause/Effect Essay from Roane State Community College (Links to an external site.)
Purdue Online Writing Lab–OWL (Links to an external site.)
Submit your final draft here. Before you submit, make sure your essay has:
800 words minimum
Works Cited Page
In-text citations(I want one quote per body paragraph)
MUST USE TWO SOURCES. ONE should be scholarly (peer reviewed), and all have to come from a PVCC library database.
Written in third person
Do not begin the conclusion paragraph with the words “In conclusion” or “In summary.”
Written in Microsoft Word
Must concentrate on either causes or effects