assessment

noun
as·​sess·​ment | \ ə-ˈses-mənt , a-\

Definition of assessment

1 : the action or an instance of making a judgment about something : the act of assessing something : appraisal assessment of damages an assessment of the president's achievements
2 : the amount assessed : an amount that a person is officially required to pay especially as a tax the tax assessment on property

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Synonyms for assessment

Synonyms

duty, imposition, impost, levy, tax

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History of Assessment

Assessment has two meanings (“an amount that a person is officially required to pay” and “the act of making a judgment about something”) so distinct that one might rightfully wonder if they come from different sources. They do not.

Both are derived from related senses of assess, a verb that for over 500 years has meant “to determine the rate or amount of (a tax).” The monetary sense of assessment is tied to this oldest use of assess. By the 19th century, the verb’s object shifted slightly to produce a new meaning, “to make an official valuation of (property) for the purposes of taxation.” It was but a short step from here to the broadened sense “to make a judgment about” that is the basis of assessment “the act of making a judgment.”

Examples of assessment in a Sentence

It's a difficult problem that requires careful assessment. I don't agree with his assessment of the problem. The owners claimed the tax assessment on their house was too high.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Google wasn't exactly wrong in its assessments, but SPDY was something of a unilateral act, with Google responsible for the design and functionality. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Google isn’t the company that we should have handed the Web over to," 17 Dec. 2018 To motivate people to make accurate assessments of their performance, financial rewards were given when their confidence matched their performance. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Political radicals don’t evaluate their own errors—about anything," 21 Dec. 2018 In a Cook assessment of competitive races, 18 Republican representatives currently serve in districts where Democrats have an advantage, but only two Democrats are in similar positions in districts where Republicans have the edge. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "2018 Midterm Congressional Election Results: Which Party Is Winning the House and the Senate?," 7 Nov. 2018 Richard Harris, an Australian anesthesiologist and cave diver, gave the boy a final assessment. Shibani Mahtani, Washington Post, "‘Time is running out’: Inside the treacherous rescue of boys trapped in a Thai cave," 13 July 2018 Starting in January, flagged districts would undergo a state assessment and could be told to develop an corrective action plan within 90 days. Meredith Colias-pete, Post-Tribune, "State works on identifying troubled school districts," 13 July 2018 One month earlier, PBK Architects won an $835,298 contract to create a five-year facilities assessment for the district. Kristi Nix, Houston Chronicle, "Fort Bend ISD officials propose $178 million technology package for not-yet-approved school bond election," 13 July 2018 The 21-year-old underwent a medical assessment on Wednesday ahead of his move to last season's Serie A runners-up, where Udinese teammate and fellow goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis is also expected to follow in his steps over the coming days. SI.com, "Napoli Announce Signing of Highly Rated Italian Shot Stopper Alex Meret From Udinese," 5 July 2018 Doug Hogan, a spokesman for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, said officials are conducting a statewide assessment to better determine the needs in order to devise a system to support relatives caring for children. Deborah Yetter, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky families face heartbreaking wait for Kinship Care money," 3 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'assessment.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of assessment

1534, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for assessment

see assess

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Last Updated

15 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for assessment

The first known use of assessment was in 1534

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