Cause and Effect Activities


Exercise 1

Consider the causes and effects in the following thesis statements. List a cause and effect for each one on your own sheet of paper.

  • The growing childhood obesity epidemic is a result of technology.
  • Much of the wildlife is dying because of the oil spill.
  • The town continued programs that it could no longer afford, so it went bankrupt.
  • More young people became politically active as use of the Internet spread throughout society.
  • While many experts believed the rise in violence was due to the poor economy, it was really due to the summer-long heat wave. 

Exercise 2

Write three cause-and-effect thesis statements of your own for each of the following five broad topics.

  • Health and nutrition
  • Sports
  • Media
  • Politics
  • History

Exercise 3

Look at some of the cause-and-effect relationships from Exercise 2. Outline the links you listed. Outline one using a cause-then-effect structure. Outline the other using the effect-then-cause structure.

Exercise 4

Choose one of the ideas that you outlined in Exercise 3 and write a full cause-and-effect essay. Be sure to include an engaging introduction, a clear thesis, strong evidence and examples, and a thoughtful conclusion.


Adapted from “3.7 Cause and Effect” of Successful College Composition (3rd Edition), 2019, used according to  CC BY-NC-SA 4.0.



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