This may be, for example, an historical event, the implementation of a policy, a medical condition or a natural disaster.
These essays may be structured in one of two ways: either the causes(s) of a situation may be discussed first followed by the effect(s), or the effect(s) could come first with the discussion working back to outline the cause(s).
Orientation: Childhood malnutrition and illness can have devastating consequences for the cognitive development of a child.
Topic: Childhood malnutrition and illness Focus: What governments can/should do ...
This can lead to a lifetime of educational and social disadvantage.
Discuss the role of the national government in addressing this issue in communities substantially affected by alcohol and drug misuse.
In an analytical structure you are required to break the topic into its different components and discuss these in separate paragraphs or sections, demonstrating balance where possible.
Examples of this type of essay include questions which ask you to take a position on a topic, such as a particular decision or policy, and present arguments which support your position.
Sometimes with cause and effect essays you are required to give an assessment of the overall effects e.g. Space must be allocated for this assessment in your structure.
An essay can have many purposes, but the basic structure is the same no matter what.