academic

adjective
ac·​a·​dem·​ic | \ ˌa-kə-ˈde-mik How to pronounce academic (audio) \
variants: or less commonly academical \ ˌa-​kə-​ˈde-​mi-​kəl How to pronounce academical (audio) \

Definition of academic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or associated with an academy or school especially of higher learning the academic curriculum academic courses
b : of or relating to performance in courses of study academic excellence academic achievements
c : very learned but inexperienced in practical matters academic thinkers
d : based on formal study especially at an institution of higher learning her academic qualifications
2 : of or relating to literary or artistic rather than technical or professional studies a region that has both academic and vocational high schools
3a : theoretical, speculative a purely academic question
b : having no practical or useful significance
4 : conforming to the traditions or rules of a school (as of literature or art) or an official academy : conventional academic painting

academic

noun

Definition of academic (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a member (such as a professor) of an institution of learning (such as a university) Both of her parents are academics.
b : a person who is academic in background, outlook, or methods
2 academics plural, chiefly US : academic subjects : courses of study taken at a school or college He has no interest in academics.

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Other Words from academic

Adjective

academically \ ˌa-​kə-​ˈde-​mi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce academically (audio) \ adverb
an academically gifted student

Synonyms & Antonyms for academic

Synonyms: Adjective

educational, intellectual, scholarly, scholastic

Antonyms: Adjective

nonacademic, noneducational, unacademic, unscholarly

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Examples of academic in a Sentence

Adjective

She received awards for her academic achievements. I spent my academic career at one school. The board set tough academic standards for graduation. He was offered a teaching job and decided to return to academic life. His interest in sailing is purely academic. He's not a sailor himself. He's not very academic, but he's good with his hands.

Noun

The book appeals to academics and to the general public. He only cares about sports. He has no interest in academics.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

In the 2000s, Iran’s government instructed the military, government, and even academic world to modernize the jets to a new standard to keep them flying. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Iran’s Aging American-Made Jets Could Fly Through the 2040s," 11 Feb. 2019 Research by Gavin Sandercock, an academic who studies fitness and strength in children, shows that English children’s fitness dropped drastically between 1998 and 2014, with the rate of decline accelerating between 2008 and 2014. Alex Salkever, Fortune, "Fortnite Is Poised to Rule the Summer. Are Parents Prepared?," 5 July 2018 The discourses in the academic art world are still pretty much against representation. Dodie Kazanjian, Vogue, "In Her First Solo Museum Snow, Jordan Casteel’s Humanizing Portraits Get Even Closer," 15 Jan. 2019 As for the costs, a major academic study in 2016 by the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine found the job impacts of immigration, when measured over at least 10 years, are very small. Hope Yen, The Seattle Times, "AP fact check: Trump isn’t holed up nonstop at White House," 14 Jan. 2019 Things took longer to resolve for the student advisers and academic student workers. Kim Kelly, Teen Vogue, "Education Workers on Campuses Around the Country Are Demanding Better Labor Conditions," 10 Jan. 2019 He's declaration—made on YouTube, as opposed to an academic setting—was widely condemned by the world's scientific community. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "CRISPR Baby Scientist Could Face Death Penalty, Colleague Fears," 8 Jan. 2019 Minhae Shim Roth is an essayist, journalist, and academic. Minhae Shim Roth, Glamour, "My Reward for Having a Baby? A $1,000 Gucci Bag," 7 Jan. 2019 There is a group of 10 scientists from around the world who get together once a year to talk about their academic findings. Angela Chen, The Verge, "Why we don’t have a hangover cure yet," 21 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Subsequently, academics and journalists analyzed aggregate death data for the months after the hurricane and compared that to the total number of deaths during that time in previous years. John D. Sutter, CNN, "Puerto Rico releases records of deaths since Hurricane Maria to CNN and another news organization," 12 June 2018 Xavier High School’s Class of 2018 graduated Sunday morning, ending a stellar year for the school in academics and sports. Shawn R. Beals, Courant Community, "Xavier High School's Graduation Closes Stellar Year For Class Of 2018," 20 May 2018 Most challenging part of high school: Finding the impossible balance between a fulltime commitment to music, student government, academics and a social life. Donna Vickroy And Susan Demar Lafferty, Daily Southtown, "Class of 2018: A look at some of the Southland's extraordinary high school graduates," 19 May 2018 As if all her extracurricular activities, academics and tennis weren't enough, Kohn gave drama a whirl this year, too. John O'malley, chicagotribune.com, "Battle tested: Sydney Kohn continues to step up her game at No. 1 singles for Michigan City's tennis team," 7 May 2018 If academics were to turn over the raw data to be made available for public review, the agency would have to spend hundreds of millions of dollars, according to a federal estimate, to redact private information. Lisa Friedman, New York Times, "The E.P.A. Says It Wants Research Transparency. Scientists See an Attack on Science.," 26 Mar. 2018 Many academics argue the portrait of Alexander Hamilton, the star of our $10 bills, is a counterfeit. Mark Kennedy, The Seattle Times, "Historians irked by musical ‘Hamilton’ escalate their duel," 4 Feb. 2019 My childhood was really focused more heavily on academics, and the performing arts stuff was more a way of being free. Corey Seymour, Vogue, "Opera Star Isabel Leonard on Singing for Sesame Street, Dancing to Pitbull, And Performing for Ruth Bader Ginsburg at the Supreme Court," 1 Feb. 2019 See the full look here: During this morning's engagement, Meghan will meet with students and academics from the Association of Commonwealth Universities' 500 member institutions. Maggie Maloney, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Wore a Black Givenchy Coat to the Association of Commonwealth Universities," 31 Jan. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'academic.' 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 academic

Adjective

1581, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1587, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for academic

Adjective

borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French achademique, academique, borrowed from Latin Acadēmicus "of the school of Plato," borrowed from Greek Akadēmeikós, Akadēmaikós, from Akadḗmeia, a place where Plato taught + -ikos -ic entry 1 — more at academy

Noun

borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French academique, borrowed from Latin Acadēmicus, noun derivative of Acadēmicus, adjective — more at academic entry 1

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Statistics for academic

Last Updated

26 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for academic

The first known use of academic was in 1581

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More Definitions for academic

academic

adjective
ac·​a·​dem·​ic | \ ˌa-kə-ˈde-mik How to pronounce academic (audio) \

Kids Definition of academic

1 : of or relating to schools and education
2 : having no practical importance Your question of whether it's better to fly or drive is purely academic since we're not going anywhere.

Other Words from academic

academically \ -​mi-​kə-​lē \ adverb How is she doing academically?

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More from Merriam-Webster on academic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with academic

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for academic

Spanish Central: Translation of academic

Nglish: Translation of academic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of academic for Arabic Speakers

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