be·​hav·​ior·​al bi-ˈhā-vyə-rəl How to pronounce behavioral (audio)
: of or relating to behavior : pertaining to reactions made in response to social stimuli
behavioral problems
behavioral similarities
Half of all potential guide dogs don't get final clearance because of medical or behavioral issues. Cassie Kreitner
: relating to or concerned with the social, psychological, and emotional factors that affect financial decisions and behavior
behavioral economics
Behavioral finance … holds that financial man—far from the perfect, mechanical trader depicted in textbooks—is a rather neurotic fellow. He follows the crowd, fails to plan ahead and often makes mistakes. Roger Lowenstein
behaviorally adverb
… gradually came to the conclusion that the wild dogs are physically and behaviorally distinct enough to constitute a uniform breed. Christine Mlot

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web This includes reinstituting long-term mental health treatment centers, greater awareness of behavioral health challenges and additional training. Andrea May Sahouri, Detroit Free Press, 23 Nov. 2022 The fire department’s team sends a clinician with an EMT to behavioral health calls. Emily Goodykoontz, Anchorage Daily News, 23 Nov. 2022 In exchange, researchers are studying the experiences of Villagers, from their behavioral troubles to their medication use and levels of depression and anxiety. Marion Renault, The New Yorker, 23 Nov. 2022 When companies exploit behavioral biases, regulation needs to play a role. Michael Luca, WSJ, 23 Nov. 2022 Resilience Lab, a behavioral health practice that also uses automation and software to make care more efficient, raised $15 million in a Series A round led by Viewside Capital Partners and Morningside. Mohana Ravindranath, STAT, 22 Nov. 2022 All displayed behavioral and mood symptoms associated with repetitive brain trauma and CTE. Steve Henson, Los Angeles Times, 22 Nov. 2022 That study found changes in the limbic system and hippocampus of the brain, which oversees emotional and behavioral activities, as well as memory. Alice Park, Time, 21 Nov. 2022 Exposure therapy grew out of behavioral principles that emerged in the late 19th century from a digestion laboratory in St. Petersburg, Russia. Virginia Hughes Desiree Rios, New York Times, 21 Nov. 2022 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1919, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of behavioral was in 1919

Dictionary Entries Near behavioral

Cite this Entry

“Behavioral.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

More from Merriam-Webster on behavioral

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