I can never seem to remember what the difference between affect and effect - does anyone have an easy to remember rule to follow?
To add to the excellent explanations, there is another use of the word "affect," which is particularly important for anyone studying psychology or education, but is bound to turn up in other subjects as well. "Affect" is often used as a noun, in which case it means something close to "emotional state." Additionally, when it's used as a noun, it's pronounced with the emphasis on the first syllable, like "AH-fect." Its use might best to described in a little scenario. Let's say you have gone on a personal interview as part of the application process for college admissions or you've gone on a job interview. After the interview, the interviewer discusses the interview with a colleague or supervisor, or write up a summary of the interview.
Supervisor: "So what explanation did Karl (or Kimberly) provide concerning why he/she wanted to attend our university (or work for our company)?
Interviewer: "Karl (or Kimberly) stated that attending our school (or working for our company) was something he/she has been excited about for a couple of years."
Supervisor: "What about Karl's (or Kimberly's) affect?
Interviewer: "To tell the truth, his (her) affect was a bit flat, and didn't really indicate he (she) was truly excited."
In a written report, it might be used like this: "Although Karl (Kimberly) stated he/she was excited about the school (or company), his/her affect didn't seem to reflect this excitement."
Hope this helps ; )