# What Are Causal Relationships Pertaining to Algebra?

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Causal relationships are connections between two things where the state of one changes or affects the state of the other. A causal relationship indicates a correlation between two values, where one actually causes the other to change. In algebra, understanding the relationship between two values can help you predict future values when graphing.

## Algebraic Relationships

A relationship between two values does not necessarily imply causality. For example, crime rates may go up when populations rise, implying a correlation, but this does not mean that the increase in population caused the crime. However, if temperatures go up outside a house, it will cost more to keep a house cool. The outside temperature directly affects the inside temperature, causing the air conditioner to run more often to maintain a lower inside temperature, and cause the bill for the electricity to increase. So, in this example, if A represents the outside temperature and C is the charge on the bill, as A increases, so must C.

## Causal Problems

Algebra tests often give options and ask students to determine whether a relationship is causal or not. Examples of such relationships include the radius of a circle and its area, the number of classes taught and teachers employed, the distance traveled and the time spent traveling or any relationship where the first value directly causes the second.