as·sign·ment | \ə-ˈsīn-mənt \

Definition of assignment 

1 : the act of assigning something the assignment of a task

2a : a position, post, or office to which one is assigned Her assignment was to the embassy in India.

b : a specified task or amount of work assigned or undertaken as if assigned by authority a homework assignment

3 law : the transfer of property especially : the transfer of property to be held in trust or to be used for the benefit of creditors

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for assignment

task, duty, job, chore, stint, assignment mean a piece of work to be done. task implies work imposed by a person in authority or an employer or by circumstance. charged with a variety of tasks duty implies an obligation to perform or responsibility for performance. the duties of a lifeguard job applies to a piece of work voluntarily performed; it may sometimes suggest difficulty or importance. the job of turning the company around chore implies a minor routine activity necessary for maintaining a household or farm. every child was assigned chores stint implies a carefully allotted or measured quantity of assigned work or service. a 2-month stint as a reporter assignment implies a definite limited task assigned by one in authority. a reporter's assignment

Examples of assignment in a Sentence

The students were given a homework assignment. The reporter's assignment is to interview the candidate. The reporter is here on an assignment. The reporter is here on assignment. The article discusses the recent assignment of senators to some of the more powerful committees. her assignment to the embassy in India the computer's assignment of a number to each image She asked if she could change her seating assignment.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

After a posting in Nigeria, Mr. Gallagher was given a series of assignments in the United States. Neil Genzlinger,, "Tom Gallagher, diplomat who became a gay activist, dies at 77," 13 July 2018 After a posting in Nigeria, Mr. Gallagher was given a series of assignments in the United States. Neil Genzlinger, New York Times, "Tom Gallagher, Diplomat Who Became a Gay Activist, Dies at 77," 12 July 2018 Machado was previously designated for assignment in 2013. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers designate Dixon Machado for assignment," 4 July 2018 The Detroit Free-Press reported that Stumpf is on a rehabilitation assignment in the minor leagues and didn't respond to text messages. Pete Grathoff, kansascity, "Chris Bosio says he was fired by Tigers for nickname for former Royals minor leaguer," 29 June 2018 The Free Press reports that Stumpf is currently on Triple-A rehab assignment in Toledo, away from the MLB club. Michael Mcgough, sacbee, "MLB pitching coach fired for alleged racial slur has career roots in Sacramento," 29 June 2018 After spending his first two seasons with the Bucks, including time on assignment in the development league, the 6-foot-6 guard was traded to the Nets on Feb. 5, 2018 for Tyler center Zeller. Ira Winderman,, "Bucks 2015 first-round pick Rashad Vaughn added to Heat summer roster," 28 June 2018 Perez proceeding — Left-hander Marin Perez expects to begin a rehab assignment with Double-A Frisco Monday night. Stefan Stevenson, star-telegram, "Hyphenate this: Rangers win season-best fifth consecutive game," 20 June 2018 Butcher's assignment in Spain happened prior to his March 2017 stroke. Tamara Lush,, "Florida photographer explores surrealist artist Salvador Dali's roots," 18 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for assignment

see assign entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about assignment

Share assignment

Statistics for assignment

Last Updated

9 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for assignment

The first known use of assignment was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for assignment

wage assignment


Financial Definition of wage assignment

What It Is

A wage assignment refers to a forced payment of a financial obligation via automatic withholding from an employee's pay.

How It Works

Courts can subject individuals who become delinquent in their obligations to wage assignments. In most cases, wage assignments are ordered when a person is delinquent on child support, spousal support, taxes or loans. If the obligor shows a history of nonpayment, a wage assignment can be used to automatically subtract money owed from his or her payroll without his or her consent. For example, if an individual becomes delinquent on $100 monthly loan payments, a wage assignment automatically deducts the $100 from the person's weekly or monthly paycheck and sends it to the lender.

Why It Matters

Wage assignments are frequently ordered in connection with delinquent child support payments and merchant credit balances. Though unlawful in certain U.S. states, wage assignments can be a useful, proactive method for recouping long-term unpaid debts.

Source: Investing Answers


as·sign·ment | \ə-ˈsīn-mənt \

Kids Definition of assignment

1 : the act of giving out or assigning the assignment of seats

2 : something (as a job or task) that is given out a homework assignment



Legal Definition of assignment 

1 : the act of assigning

2a : a position, post, or office to which one is assigned

b : a task assigned

3 : a present transfer of property or rights

absolute assignment

: an assignment in which the transfer is complete and leaves the assignor with no interest in the property or right transferred

assignment for the benefit of creditors

: assignment of property by a debtor to an assignee to be held in trust and used to pay off the debtor's debts

assignment of income

: an assignment by one taxpayer to another of income for the purpose of avoiding taxes

assignment of lease

: an assignment by a tenant of all of his or her remaining rights in a property under a lease — compare sublease

effective assignment

: an assignment by which the assignor's interest in the property or right being assigned is terminated and transferred to the assignee

equitable assignment

: an assignment (as of property in which one has a future interest) that is not valid at law but that would be upheld in a court of equity

general assignment

: an assignment for the benefit of creditors of all of a debtor's property to be distributed fairly to the creditors — compare preference

wage assignment

: an assignment by an employee by which an amount of his or her wages are transferred to another party (as a creditor) before the wages are paid to the employee — compare garnishment

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on assignment

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


lying above or upon

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
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!