100 Cause and Effect Essay Topics

Updated on November 6, 2018
VirginiaLynne profile image

Virginia has been a university English instructor for over 20 years. She specializes in helping people write essays faster and easier.

Cause Effect Essays

Examine why something has happened or exists.

Speculate about what caused the situation.

Examine the results of an event, choice, or situation.

Trace the start of a situation to a discussion of its results.

Cause & Effect Essay Topics
Cause & Effect Essay Topics

How to Use These Topic Ideas

Here's how you can use the following topic ideas to write an essay:

  • Reword the question to fit your assignment.
  • Use a question for your topic idea helps keep you organized.
  • Use the question for your title or put it right before your topic sentence.
  • The answer to the question is your thesis. Simple!

For step-by-step instructions, see How to Write a Cause Essay.

What causes conflict in relationships?
What causes conflict in relationships? | Source

Relationship Topics

  1. What causes divorce?
  2. What is the effect of divorce on children? Does the age of the child make a difference?
  3. How does the divorce of parents affect the dating and marriage relationships of their children?
  4. What is the effect of long distance on relationships?
  5. How does living together before being married affect a relationship?
  6. What causes men to be afraid of commitment?
  7. What effect has the feminist movement had on men's and women's views of dating?
  8. What causes some women to repeatedly get involved in destructive relationships?
  9. What effect does having an abortion have on a dating relationship?
  10. What causes children to rebel against their parents?
  11. What effect has social media had on family relationships?
  12. What causes sibling rivalry?
  13. What effect does birth order have on personality (or career)?
  14. What effect does a happy and fulfilling marriage have on a person's health?
  15. Does going to college cause people to have better marriages?
  16. What is the effect of grandparents raising a child?
  17. What causes teenagers to become sexually active?
  18. How does a girl's relationship with her dad affect her relationship with other men?
  19. What is the effect of growing up in a single-parent household?
  20. What is the effect of being a twin?
  21. What the effect has China's one child had on family relationships? How will the new two child policy change family dynamics?
  22. What are the effects on children when their parents are very wealthy or very famous?
  23. What causes parents to over-schedule their children's activities? (Or what is the effect of over-scheduling on the child?)
  24. What causes a family to have close relationships?
  25. What is the effect of family vacations on family relationships?

Social Problem Topics

  1. Why are more children poor than any other group?
  2. What causes poverty in the U.S.?
  3. What are the effects of growing up in poverty?
  4. What causes homelessness?
  5. What effect does growing up with food insecurity have on children?
  6. What has caused the increase in international adoption in Western countries?
  7. What is the effect on children (or adults) of watching news reports of natural disasters, terrorist strikes, sexual predators, and other fearful situations?
  8. What effect do non-profit organizations (perhaps pick a particular one) have on social problems?
  9. What is the effect of more baby boomers reaching retirement age?
  10. What is the cause of men still out-earning women in wages? What is the effect?
  11. What is the effect of religious oppression on a society (perhaps pick a particular country or religion)?
  12. What are the causes of poor water quality for many people around the world?
  13. What is the effect of people not having shoes to wear?
  14. What are the effects of inadequate sanitation on a community?
  15. What is the cause (or effect) of continued discrimination and racism?
  16. What causes people with disabilities to be unable to get jobs?
  17. What is the effect on children of growing up in poverty?

Does our fear of shots cause people to avoid them?
Does our fear of shots cause people to avoid them? | Source

Healthcare Paper Ideas

  1. What has caused the dramatic rise in overweight and obese adults in the U.S. in the last ten years?
  2. What will be the effects of this rise in obesity on the healthcare system?
  3. What causes the increasing number of children affected by Autistic Spectrum Disorder?
  4. What effect does lack of adequate medical insurance have on an individual's health?
  5. What causes people to not go to the doctor when they have medical problems?
  6. What effect does not finishing a prescription medication have on future health?
  7. What is the cause (or the effect) of people not getting their children vaccinated?
  8. What causes the spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa?
  9. What is the effect of climate change on infectious medical diseases?
  10. What is the effect of globalization on the spread of disease?
  11. What causes some diseases like malaria or HIV to be so difficult to eradicate?
  12. What effect does stress have on health?
  13. What effect has cancer research had on stopping cancer deaths?
  14. What causes people to get cancer?
  15. What causes pancreatic cancer to be so deadly?
  16. What has caused cancer to be so difficult to cure?
  17. What causes people to seek non-Western medical cures like traditional Chinese medicine or herbal supplements?
  18. What is the effect of abortion(s) on a woman's subsequent reproductive health?
  19. What effect does birth control have on women?
  20. What effect do regular dental check-ups have on oral health?
  21. What causes people to go blind?
  22. What causes people to develop allergies?
  23. What effect does an increased use of technology have on health?
  24. What causes cardiovascular disease?
  25. What effect does exercise have on the body?
  26. What causes people to make healthy living choices?
  27. What causes so many healthcare providers to be overweight?
  28. What are the social effects of having braces on teeth?

Social Media and the Internet

  1. What effect does cell phone use have on teenagers?
  2. What causes families to buy unlimited cell phone plans?
  3. What are the effects of violent video games on young children or teenagers?
  4. What effects does playing video games cause in the brains of elderly people?
  5. Does online shopping cause people to spend more money?
  6. What effect does social media have on teen relationships?
  7. What are the causes (or effects) of cyber bullying?
  8. What causes social media sites to lose popularity?
  9. What are the effects of picture and video-based social media sites like Snapchat or Instagram on teenage social interaction?
  10. What causes a video game to be popular?
  11. What effect does moving away from computers and towards tablets and smartphones have on how we browse the Internet?
  12. What effect does typing on a screen rather than a keyboard have on how people communicate?
  13. What causes Google to be the most popular search engine?
  14. What are the social effects of everyone on the planet having cell phones?
  15. How have smartphones affected business practices?

What causes students to get discouraged in school?
What causes students to get discouraged in school? | Source


  1. How does standardized testing affect student dropout rates?
  2. What effect does being labeled "gifted and talented" have on students?
  3. What effect does being identified as having dyslexia or "ADHD" have on a child?
  4. What causes students to think school is boring?
  5. Does using technology like iPads or smartboards in classrooms cause students to learn better?
  6. What is the effect on learning when students do most of their work reading from a computer or tablet rather than paper and books?
  7. What are the effects of homeschooling on children? (Or what are the social effects?)
  8. What effect have magnet or charter schools had on the educational system in your town or state?
  9. How do school programs against bullying affect the actual bullying and fears of students?
  10. Do single-sex classrooms cause students to learn better?
  11. What are the positive and negative effects of having school uniforms?
  12. What is the effect of having an open high school campus?
  13. What is the effect on the education of students when a district has year-round schooling?
  14. What causes teachers to burn out?
  15. What causes some schools to fail to educate students?
  16. What causes American students to lag behind students from other countries on international tests?
  17. What effect do fine arts have on students?
  18. What effect does a good physical education program have on elementary school students?
  19. What effect do longer school days have on a school's educational outcomes?
  20. What effect does parent involvement in schools have on education?

History and Politics Topics

  1. What caused the Civil War?
  2. What are the continuing effects of slavery on American society?
  3. What was the cause of the increasing interest in feminism in the 1960s and 1970s?
  4. How were WWII veterans affected by their wartime experiences?
  5. What effect did WWII have on the Jewish people?
  6. What effect did Christianity have on the Roman empire?
  7. What caused the Arab Spring? What are the effects of the Arab Spring?
  8. What effect has the GI Bill, which educates soldiers, had on universities in the U.S.?
  9. What was the effect of colonialism on Britain's view of itself?
  10. What were the causes and effects of colonialism?
  11. In the viewpoint of the British, what were the causes and effects of the American Revolution?
  12. What causes the drug wars in Colombia?
  13. What causes illegal immigration?
  14. What are the effects of immigration on a country (pick any country)?
  15. What is the effect of online sales on businesses (in any country)?
  16. What was the effect of the printing press (or other invention) on world history?
  17. What are the effects of globalization on the position of women?
  18. What are the effects of American drone attacks on terrorists and civilians?
  19. What was the cause of the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11?
  20. What is the cause of increased militancy on the part of North Korea?

Questions & Answers

  • What do you think of the essay topic "What are the causes and effects of the decline of ethics in Pakistani politics?"

    Here are some other ways to state this topic:

    1. What has caused the decline in ethics in Pakistani government?

    2. What causes have led to the effect of a decline in ethics in Pakistani politics?

  • What do you think of the essay topic "What is the cause of illegal immigration?"

    Here are some other essay questions on that topic:

    1. What is causing so many people to flee South American countries and travel?

    2. What causes so many Haitians to want to stay in the U.S.?

    3. What causes the U.S. to be such a popular place for illegal immigrants to come?

    4. What causes people to overstay their tourist visa?

    5. What causes people to overstay their student visa?

    6. What causes people to be caught and deported?

    7. What causes people to come illegally rather than to try to come legally?

  • What do you think of, "What causes paranoia? What's the effect?" as a cause and effect essay topic?

    Psychological or mental health topics are always interesting to research, but be sure that your instructor accepts this kind of topic. There generally needs to be some disagreement about the cause to make this paper work. If the cause is considered clear and uncontroversial, then you would be writing an Explaining essay rather than a cause argument essay. Here are some other possibilities:

    1. What causes schizophrenia?

    2. What effect does having a relative with schizophrenia have on families?

    3. What causes obsessive-compulsive disorder? How does having this disorder affect a person's life and work?

    4. What effect does this OCD have on a person's family relationships and friendships?

    I have more topics on mental health here: https://hubpages.com/humanities/Easy-Essay-Topics-...

  • What do you think of the essay topic questions "What is the effect of divorce on children?" and "Does the age of the child make a difference?"

    Those are both good questions. I think that you could do just one of those or keep the second question as part of your conclusion if you discover that the age does make a difference. Other articles on divorce and children could be:

    What causes parents to divorce when their children go to college?

    What is the effect that a parent's divorce has on their children's dating and marriage relationships?


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    • profile image


      6 weeks ago

      this has been very helpful to my high school daughter for her language classes

    • profile image

      Hassan jaber 

      2 months ago

      Thanks for everything

    • profile image

      Ashley Rampersaud 

      6 months ago

      Helpful , Thank u so much for this

    • KimberlyLake profile image

      Kimberly Lake 

      12 months ago from California

      Very useful!

    • profile image


      12 months ago

      Thank you so much

    • profile image


      12 months ago

      Thanks a lot!

    • profile image


      13 months ago

      Hi. this really helped

    • profile image


      14 months ago

      I love this site

    • profile image


      14 months ago

      this will definitely will help me review for the act test

    • profile image

      no one 

      14 months ago

      its cool

    • profile image


      15 months ago

      this helped my English class (6th grade) thanks Mrs.Wilborn!!

    • profile image


      16 months ago

      This seriously helped me with my essay/speech ideas!

      Thanks so much Letter Pile!

    • profile image


      17 months ago

      these topics are very fantastic. they helped me to write a great essay and, so these topics make writers to write a good essay more about cause and effect

    • profile image

      Robbert Dillard 

      17 months ago

      This is very useful, I learned lots.

    • profile image


      17 months ago

      Thanks this helped

    • profile image


      18 months ago

      This was extremely helpful! Thank you so much!!

    • profile image


      19 months ago

      Thanks for the great ideas to point me in the right direction for my next essay!

    • profile image


      20 months ago

      This was great for me because I had to write an essay about some kind of topic with a cause and an effect and this website gave me some really good ideas, Thank You!

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      23 months ago from United States

      Sophia--I'm so glad that this helped you. I especially enjoy teaching Chinese students. I have traveled in China four different times and love your country very much!

    • profile image


      23 months ago

      I am a Chinese student and I think your sharing did help me a lot. Thank you !

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      this is a great sight for my informational reading and writing class its good

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      Hi thanks for helping me

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      these topics are really good.. i used some of these topics for my projects and got great marks.. i got A+ in all my projects , i am in 7th grade....

    • hubber8893 profile image

      Sourav Rana 

      3 years ago

      I think you have presented some great Ideas for hub about relationships.

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      These topics really helped me for school

    • roob profile image


      3 years ago from United States

      Creative idea for a hub, what was your case and effect for making it lol

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      WOW this is super great to look up stuff for an assignment.

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      Awesome topics thanks a million

    • Dwight GolidayJr profile image

      Dwight Goliday Jr 

      3 years ago from East Saint Louis

      Wow. There are a lot things that cause and effect. Very informative write.

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      3 years ago from United States

      Thanks Zakeycia and YoLex. My students have come up with most of these topics through the years and now this is my most visited article so they must have done a good job! I think it got over 2000 views one day last week!

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      This is awesome I wish I'd found this hub before I graduated college lol! Great work!

    • profile image

      Zakeycia Dickens 

      3 years ago

      I have a cause and effect essay to type for my English class. I was having a hard time coming up with a topic. Your website and topic suggestions were very helpful. Thank you.

    • Umm Ibrahim profile image

      Rasheedah Abdul-Hakeem 

      4 years ago

      Thanks. Great topics.

    • JPac1 profile image

      James Packard 

      4 years ago from Columbia, Missouri

      What a great hub! Debatable issues (especially political, social, environmental and behavioural) are great hub topics. They are good to write about to do research and clear up one's own viewpoint, but they also get people talking, and also spark very needed discussion. Thanks for sharing.

    • lawdoctorlee profile image

      Liza Treadwell Esq aka Liza Lugo JD 

      4 years ago from New York, NY

      I love this one, VirginiaLynne. Your hubs are so valuable to students and professional writers. Cause and effect papers are among the most interesting to read.

      I voted this hub "up," "useful," and "interesting." I am bookmarking this hub for future reference. I know I'll be using it! Keep up the excellent work here.

    • MDavisatTIERS profile image

      Marilyn L Davis 

      4 years ago from Georgia

      Good afternoon, Virginia; excellent examples for all categories. Well done. ~Marilyn

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      4 years ago from United States

      Here is another place to look for topic ideas: https://owlcation.com/humanities/Causal-Analysis-E...

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      4 years ago from United States

      Hi Gertrude--These two words are ones that are often confused. Affect also means "to produce an effect upon" as well as "to influence." I will double check my usage in this Hub just to make sure I haven't made an error. Thanks!

    • profile image

      Gertrude McFuzz 

      4 years ago

      These are great topics. I just have one comment. Sometimes you use "effect" when you should use "affect."

      affect = influence - usually a verb

      effect= result - usually a noun

      effect= cause - not used that often - verb

    • sara0129 profile image

      Shamim Rajabali 

      4 years ago from Texas

      This will come in handy for my English class. Thanks.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      I Love it very much

    • profile image

      rakesh ranjana 

      4 years ago

      Social causes are growing up in lot more ways, knowing it and having a knowledge about it through this site, will help a lot in many ways for people to understand there relationship and social problems

    • MariaBrown profile image


      5 years ago

      Great hub! I like your ideas, it is something different & innovative. Vote up!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Thanks! This is helpful.... Vote up.

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      5 years ago from United States

      Sumnerswett--I teach MLA format because that is used by most American colleges in their English departments. However, you are very right to point out that APA and Chicago and other formats are used in different types of courses. I think considering cause and effect is sometimes a bit confusing because it depends on where you view the start of the situation. Often a cause creates an effect, which causes another situation. Sometimes it is hard to pull them apart. That is why I usually like to call this a "speculating about causes" essay, because we can't always definitively determine the absolute cause, but we can always speculate and argue for the most important causes, or the most important effects that we see in a situation.

    • sumnerswett profile image

      Sumner Swett 

      5 years ago from Owls Head Maine

      Okay so cause and effect essays are written in different formats, but let me say in my college profession for the essays to be written were to be in APA format, and it is interesting when researching and writing whether it is from information you have researched or if it free lance. I like to research topics before writing and also note taking is effective. The cause is what causes the situation and the effect is what you have to take into consideration to the cause as we all know it.

    • KimberlyLake profile image

      Kimberly Lake 

      5 years ago from California

      Great topics! Voted up and shared.

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      5 years ago from United States

      Leidy--That is a great essay topic. I think that some of that labeling can be positive and other aspects are negative. It can encourage students to believe that they are capable, but it can discourage them by making them think that they don't need to work hard, or that if they don't achieve a high grade on everything, they have failed.

    • satomko profile image

      Seth Tomko 

      5 years ago from Macon, GA

      A good and diverse collection of topics. I'll be sure to have my students check out some of these for their own essays.

    • Annie Miller profile image

      Annie Miller 

      6 years ago from Wichita Falls, Texas

      Very interesting and in depth Hub. I am passing this along and saving it, as well!

    • Chris Achilleos profile image

      Chris Achilleos 

      6 years ago

      Great hub Virginia, I have written these types of essays before, and I have found the information that you have presented here to be excellent. Thank you for sharing. Voted up and useful!

      Chris Achilleos

    • VirginiaLynne profile imageAUTHOR

      Virginia Kearney 

      6 years ago from United States

      Thanks so much Carol! You are always an encouragement.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      6 years ago from Arizona

      This is something to save when trying to come up with new writing ideas. Great hub...Going to pass this along and of course vote up.


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