bias

noun
bi·​as | \ ˈbī-əs How to pronounce bias (audio) \

Definition of bias

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : an inclination of temperament or outlook especially : a personal and sometimes unreasoned judgment : prejudice
b : an instance of such prejudice
c : bent, tendency
d(1) : deviation of the expected value of a statistical estimate from the quantity it estimates
(2) : systematic error introduced into sampling or testing by selecting or encouraging one outcome or answer over others
2 : a line diagonal to the grain of a fabric especially : a line at a 45 degree angle to the selvage often utilized in the cutting of garments for smoother fit
3a : a peculiarity in the shape of a bowl that causes it to swerve when rolled on the green in lawn bowling
b : the tendency of a bowl to swerve also : the impulse causing this tendency
c : the swerve of the bowl
4a : a voltage applied to a device (such as a transistor control electrode) to establish a reference level for operation
b : a high-frequency voltage combined with an audio signal to reduce distortion in tape recording
on the bias
1 : diagonally to the grain of a fabric cut the cloth on the bias sleeves cut on the bias
2 : at an angle : diagonally to the fibers of something cut the meat on the bias carrots cut on the bias

bias

verb
biased or biassed; biasing or biassing

Definition of bias (Entry 2 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to give a settled and often prejudiced outlook to his background biases him against foreigners
2 : to apply a slight negative or positive voltage to (something, such as a transistor)

bias

adjective

Definition of bias (Entry 3 of 4)

: diagonal, slanting used chiefly of fabrics and their cut

bias

adverb

Definition of bias (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : diagonally cut cloth bias
2 obsolete : awry

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Other Words from bias

Adjective

biasness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for bias

Noun

predilection, prepossession, prejudice, bias mean an attitude of mind that predisposes one to favor something. predilection implies a strong liking deriving from one's temperament or experience. a predilection for travel prepossession suggests a fixed conception likely to preclude objective judgment of anything counter to it. a prepossession against technology prejudice usually implies an unfavorable prepossession and connotes a feeling rooted in suspicion, fear, or intolerance. a mindless prejudice against the unfamiliar bias implies an unreasoned and unfair distortion of judgment in favor of or against a person or thing. a strong bias toward the plaintiff

Verb

incline, bias, dispose, predispose mean to influence one to have or take an attitude toward something. incline implies a tendency to favor one of two or more actions or conclusions. I incline to agree bias suggests a settled and predictable leaning in one direction and connotes unfair prejudice. the experience biased him against foreigners dispose suggests an affecting of one's mood or temper so as to incline one toward something. her nature disposes her to trust others predispose implies the operation of a disposing influence well in advance of the opportunity to manifest itself. does fictional violence predispose them to accept real violence?

Bias vs. Biased

Verb

In recent years, we have seen more evidence of the adjectival bias in constructions like “a bias news program” instead of the more usual “a biased news program.” The reason is likely because of aural confusion: the -ed of biased may be filtered out by hearers, which means that bias and biased can sound similar in the context of normal speech. They are not interchangeable, however. The adjective that means “exhibited or characterized by an unreasoned judgment” is biased (“a biased news story”). There is an adjective bias, but it means “diagonal” and is used only of fabrics (“a bias cut across the fabric”).

Examples of bias in a Sentence

Noun … members of the opinion media will cherry-pick moments from the debate that support their own ideological biases. — Michelle Cottle, New Republic, 16 Oct. 2000 Blatant racial and gender discrimination is just about over, creating a sociological space in which to worry about subtler forms of bias. — Gregg Easterbrook, New Republic, 20 Dec. 1999 Like the printing press before it, the computer has a powerful bias toward amplifying personal autonomy and individual problem-solving. — Katha Pollitt, Nation, 9 Oct. 1995 He showed a bias toward a few workers in particular. Do they have a bias against women? The company was accused of racial bias. The decision was made without bias. She showed no bias toward older clients. a student with a strong bias towards the arts Verb Unfortunately, his convictions are not clearly and logically developed; they mostly lurk in the background biasing his reporting. He does not always give the reader a fair chance to follow the arguments of the actors—even those with whom he ardently agrees. — Leonard Silk, New York Times Book Review, 24 Feb. 1980 I don't want to bias you against the movie, but I thought the book was much better. The circumstances could bias the results of the survey. Adverb made of fabric cut bias
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But white students lose out too when teachers are not diverse, on opportunities to shed bias and prepare for the world beyond the twin Cape bridges. BostonGlobe.com, 26 July 2021 Looking at bias in systems, practices and policies. Madeline Mitchell, The Enquirer, 26 July 2021 Ben and David, not so much; an innocent woman was killed because of Turley’s racial bias. Maggie Fremont, Vulture, 25 July 2021 The report, published Wednesday, highlights 38 of the hundreds of anti-Muslim bias incidents documented by the organization this year, CAIR said in a news release. Alaa Elassar, CNN, 25 July 2021 There is a national perception and bias about Utah women, Durham said. Becky Jacobs, The Salt Lake Tribune, 25 July 2021 Under Senate Enrolled Act 198, judges handing down criminal sentences could consider bias due to victims' real or perceived traits. Kaitlin Lange, The Indianapolis Star, 23 July 2021 In 2018, Washington's Supreme Court became the first in the nation to adopt a rule to reduce implicit bias in jury trials, according to the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington. Lacey Latch, The Arizona Republic, 23 July 2021 At least two defendants have requested that their trials be relocated out of the District, citing bias against Trump and his supporters. Washington Post, 20 July 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb That leads to bias against people who use language differently than white people. Khari Johnson, Wired, 17 June 2021 Finally, Dell also includes custom power profiles in the BIOS as well as user control over how the system should bias cooling. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, 1 June 2021 Prospective jurors who admit to bias against noncitizens or non-English speakers could be disqualified, legal experts say. Fox News, 17 May 2021 Prospective jurors who admit to bias against noncitizens or non-English speakers could be disqualified, legal experts say. Ryan J. Foley, chicagotribune.com, 17 May 2021 Robert Thibault, a researcher at the University of Bristol, in the UK, pointed out the lack of a control group and the direct involvement of the company seeking to profit off the product, which can bias results. Ula Chrobak, Outside Online, 8 May 2021 These modes adjust video settings to bias towards image quality, resolution, and framerate. Kris Holt, Forbes, 10 Mar. 2021 The inevitable omissions can bias the data against certain groups. Hannah Fry, The New Yorker, 22 Mar. 2021 This warped worldview might even bias you, subconsciously, to under-appraise most of the developing world. New York Times, 24 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Mountain Brook school officials will continue diversity and anti-bias training for teachers, but there is no timeline or plan for what future training might look like. al, 13 July 2021 More staff and grant reviewers with expertise on AAPIs should be recruited and given anti-bias training. Amy Yee, Scientific American, 8 July 2021 The problem with teacher anti-bias training, according to some parents in Alabama’s wealthiest, most segregated suburb, is that there’s way too much talk about gender and race. J.d. Crowe | Jdcrowe@al.com, al, 30 June 2021 Williamson, who's held prior C-Suite roles at MTV Networks and Viacom, as well as The Raben Group, has found anti-bias training revelatory herself. NBC News, 16 June 2021 The change is partly in response to efforts initiated by school districts in the past year after the murder of George Floyd in police custody, such as diversity, inclusion, and equity initiatives; anti-bias training; and anti-racist curricula. Chelsea Sheasley, The Christian Science Monitor, 4 June 2021 Parents are also pushing back against the loosely related trend of anti-bias training for students and staff members, which has led to dust-ups across the country. New York Times, 1 June 2021 Parents are also pushing back against the loosely related trend of anti-bias training for students and staff members, which has led to dust-ups across the country. BostonGlobe.com, 1 June 2021 Among other efforts, districts are instituting anti-bias training for teachers and requiring that history lessons include the experiences of marginalized groups. Marisa Iati, Anchorage Daily News, 29 May 2021

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

Noun

1530, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Verb

circa 1628, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1551, in the meaning defined above

Adverb

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bias

Noun, Verb, Adjective, and Adverb

Middle French biais

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Learn More About bias

Dictionary Entries Near bias

biarticulate

bias

bias-belted tire

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Statistics for bias

Last Updated

29 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Bias.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bias. Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for bias

bias

noun

English Language Learners Definition of bias

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a tendency to believe that some people, ideas, etc., are better than others that usually results in treating some people unfairly
: a strong interest in something or ability to do something

bias

verb

English Language Learners Definition of bias (Entry 2 of 2)

: to have a strong and often unfair influence on (someone or something)

bias

noun
bi·​as | \ ˈbī-əs How to pronounce bias (audio) \

Kids Definition of bias

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a seam, cut, or stitching running in a slant across cloth
2 : a favoring of some ideas or people over others : prejudice She has a bias against newcomers.

bias

verb
biased or biassed; biasing or biassing

Kids Definition of bias (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give a prejudiced outlook to Existing ideas may bias his observation of events.

bias

noun
bi·​as | \ ˈbī-əs How to pronounce bias (audio) \

Legal Definition of bias

: a personal and often unreasoned judgment for or against one side in a dispute : prejudice a judge disqualified because of bias

More from Merriam-Webster on bias

Nglish: Translation of bias for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bias for Arabic Speakers

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