acronym was our Word of the Day on 05/05/2017. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of acronym in a Sentence
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is known by the acronym “NATO.”
Recent Examples of acronym from the Web
Black was the principal investigator on SOMNIA; the acronym stands for Systematic Observational Method for Narcolepsy and Influenza Immunization Assessment.
The roster rules that are known read like a garrulous alphabet-soup of acronyms and directives.
The European General Data Protection Regulation—better known by its acronym, GDPR—sets a new standard for data collection, storage, and usage among all companies that operate in Europe.
Most were focused on the lesbian, gay, and bisexual part of the acronym, said Jeremy Goldbach, an associate professor of social work at the University of Southern California who specializes in LGBT issues.
Even school becomes a maze of acronyms like SPED and IEP.
The acronym of Mr López Obrador’s party is an allusion to La Virgen Morena of Guadalupe, Mexico’s patron saint.
Next, the acronyms, AT&T Park (21) and PNC Park (20), the prettiest parks with not-so-pretty names.
The name is an acronym for Unlawful Narcotics Investigations, Treatment and Education, but just over half of the organization’s budget goes to prevention and education.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acronym.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
What's the difference between an abbreviation and an acronym?
Some people are unsure of whether to call ASAP or appt abbreviations or acronyms. Both abbreviation and acronym are used to refer to a shortened form, but an acronym is a shortened form of a phrase and is usually made up of the initial letters of that phrase. For example, NATO comes from “North Atlantic Treaty Organization,” and ASAP comes from “as soon as possible.” Abbreviations, on the other hand, can be shortened forms of words or phrases, and need not necessarily be made up of the initial letters of either. ASAP and appt (for appointment) are both considered abbreviations, but only ASAP is an acronym. Acronyms are a type of abbreviation.
What is the difference between the words acronym and initialism?
Acronym is a fairly recent word, dating from the 1940s, although acronyms existed long before we gave them that name. The term was preceded in English by the word initialism, meaning an abbreviation formed from the initial letters of a phrase, and which has been in use since the late 19th century.
Some people feel strongly that acronym should only be used for terms like NATO, which is pronounced as a single word, and that initialism should be used if the individual letters are all pronounced distinctly, as with FBI. Our research shows that acronym is commonly used to refer to both types of abbreviations.
Did You Know?
Acronym was created by combining acr- ("beginning") with -onym, ("name" or "word"). You may recognize -onym in other familiar English words such as pseudonym and synonym. English speakers borrowed -onym directly from the Greek (it derives from onyma, the Greek word for "name"). Acr- is also from Greek, but it made a side trip through Middle French on its way to English.
ACRONYM Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of acronym for English Language Learners
: a word formed from the first letters of each one of the words in a phrase
ACRONYM Defined for Kids
Definition of acronym for Students
- The word “radar” is an acronym for “radio detecting and ranging.”
Seen and Heard
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