ac·​cel·​er·​a·​tion | \ ik-ˌse-lə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce acceleration (audio) , (ˌ)ak-\

Definition of acceleration

1a : the act or process of moving faster or happening more quickly : the act or process of accelerating rapid acceleration the acceleration of economic growth
b : ability to accelerate a car with good acceleration
2 physics : the rate of change of velocity with respect to time broadly : change of velocity

Examples of acceleration in a Sentence

The car delivers quick acceleration. There has been some acceleration in economic growth. There has been an acceleration in economic growth.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

The transmission shifted smoothly throughout the power band, and there was quite impressive acceleration from this drivetrain. G. Chambers Williams Iii, Houston Chronicle, "Nissan Maxima: 'Four-door sports car' gets some upgrades for 2018," 9 Feb. 2018 The transmission shifted smoothly throughout the power band, and there was quite impressive acceleration from this drivetrain. G. Chambers Williams Iii, star-telegram, "Nissan Maxima ‘4-door Sports Car’ gets some upgrades for 2018, starts at $33,270 | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 5 Jan. 2018 Ford’s Patterson says even though gas is cheap, the company will sell the higher performance of hybrids, with gas engines boosted by instant electric power for acceleration. Tom Krisher, The Seattle Times, "Detroit show has SUVs, horsepower, but electric cars are few," 14 Jan. 2019 The move improves explosiveness, acceleration, and maximum velocity, says Samuel, and much of the benefit comes from the resistance band component. Jenny Mccoy, SELF, "Why You Should Try Adding a Resistance Band to Your Treadmill Workout Like Nina Dobrev," 7 Nov. 2018 There are other possible explanations for this acceleration, like magnetic interaction with the solar wind, pressure from solar radiation, and forces of drag and friction. Chelsea Gohd,, "Interstellar Visitor 'Oumuamua Is a Comet After All," 27 June 2018 But while investment did accelerate last year, the Penn Wharton Budget Model, an academic group, attributes all of that acceleration to a surge in oil prices which stimulated more drilling and extraction of shale oil. Greg Ip, WSJ, "The Global Boom, Barely Begun, May Be Over," 23 Jan. 2019 According to the company, the CV-1 can’t quite hold up in terms of acceleration, managing 0 to 62 mph in six seconds, far behind most Teslas. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Kalashnikov Made a Soviet-Style Electric Car," 24 Aug. 2018 The board also voted in favor of an acceleration of the road to a $15-an-hour minimum for employees, moving from a five-year to a four-year path. Diana Dombrowski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "MPS board passes budget that restores $11.6 million to classrooms, cuts central office," 29 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of acceleration

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for acceleration

borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French acceleratiun, borrowed from Latin accelerātiōn-, accelerātiō, from accelerāre "to accelerate" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about acceleration

Share acceleration

Statistics for acceleration

Last Updated

6 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for acceleration

The first known use of acceleration was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for acceleration


ac·​cel·​er·​a·​tion | \ ak-ˌse-lə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce acceleration (audio) \

Kids Definition of acceleration

: the act or process of speeding up


ac·​cel·​er·​a·​tion | \ ik-ˌsel-ə-ˈrā-shən, (ˌ)ak- How to pronounce acceleration (audio) \

Medical Definition of acceleration

1 : the act or process of accelerating : the state of being accelerated
2 : change of velocity also : the rate of this change
3 : advancement in mental growth or achievement beyond the average for one's age

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on acceleration

What made you want to look up acceleration? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


the way words of a language are spelled

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!