effectively vs efficiently

Discussion in 'English Only' started by uktous, Dec 31, 2009.

  1. uktous Senior Member

    cantonese
    Hi,

    Question:
    Any difference between "effectively and efficiently" in my sentence?

    Sentence:
    My greatest challenge will be to allocate my time effectively / efficiently.
    To ensure thatI will be able to manage both my work and to prepare for my exams , allocating my time effectively / efficiently is needed.

    My
    opinion:
    When I googled "allocating my time", "effectively" is commonly used.
    However, I don't think "efficiently" is wrong.

    Thanks
     
  2. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    New York
    USA - English
    There is a great deal of difference between the two words, which do not mean the same thing at all. The choice should therefore be not the word that is more common, but the word that expresses whatever it is you really mean to say.
     
  3. uktous Senior Member

    cantonese
    "There is a great deal of difference between the two words"
    Yes

    effectively = producing the intended result
    efficiently = prodcuing a satisfactory result without wasting time or energy

    According to my dictionary, both can be used.
    However, since "efficiently" is uncommonly used in this context, I don't dare to use it without other people's opinions
     
  4. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Jerusalem
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    Do you see the difference between the two definitions, uktous?
    Effectively refers only to the end result; efficiently also includes the way the result was produced.
     
  5. azulmaría Senior Member

    Buenos Aires, Argentina.
    Spanish - Argentina
    Effectively it does not matter how you do it and how long it takes, as long as the result is the best possible.

    Efficiently it doesn´t focus on the good resut, the emphasis is on the process through which you achieve it (ex. low cost, short time, etc)
     
  6. Dmitry_86

    Dmitry_86 Senior Member

    I know this difference between "efficiently" and "effectively", but this discussion, though, aroused fresh interest in me. When speaking about "efficiently" what do you mean by "satisfactory" result? Which result can be considered "satisfactory"? In the definition of "effectively" a better word is used: "intended" which equals "target result". So does it mean that "satisfactory result" is identical here to "intended result" ("target result")? If no then what exactly is meant by "efficiently"? Just doing something by means of saving all the resources available (time, energy, money, force, etc.) as much as possible without really focusing on the quality of what we will obtain in the end?

    Now about the sentences:

    1) My greatest challenge will be to allocate my time effectively (We are interested in the result only).
    2) To ensure that I will be able to manage both my work and to prepare for my exams, allocating my time efficiently is needed. (We need to plan our activities so that we manage to do everything we expect to)
     
  7. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Jerusalem
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    It depends on the context. Normally a satisfactory result is also the one that was intended.
     

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