bi·​ased ˈbī-əst How to pronounce biased (audio)
: exhibiting or characterized by bias
: tending to yield one outcome more frequently than others in a statistical experiment
a biased coin
: having an expected value different from the quantity or parameter estimated
a biased estimate

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Bias vs. Biased

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 biased in a Sentence

It's also politically biased, full of slighting references to the Whigs, whom Johnson detested, and imperiously chauvinistic, wherever possible dismissing or making light of words imported from French. Charles McGrath, New York Times Book Review, 4 Dec. 2005
I am willing to believe that history is for the most part inaccurate and biased, but what is peculiar to our age is the abandonment of the idea that history could be truthfully written. In the past people deliberately lied, or they unconsciously colored what they wrote, or they struggled after the truth, well knowing that they must make many mistakes; but in each case they believed that 'the facts' existed and were more or less discoverable. Leon Wieseltier, New Republic, 17 Feb. 2003
The information experts say that it's dangerous to conclude very much from talking to people because you will never interact with a scientifically selected random sample. Thus, the information you derive from meeting people is biased or anecdotal. Will Manley, Booklist, 1 Mar. 2002
But even if you think I may be biased about the book's conclusions, please trust me about its awful prose. James Martin, Commonweal, 3 May 2002
She is too biased to write about the case objectively. He is biased against women. The judges of the talent show were biased toward musical acts. See More
Recent Examples on the Web But critics say some of the U.S. government’s counterintelligence efforts are racially biased and paranoid, amounting to a new Red Scare — a charge at least partly supported by the cases the Justice Department has had to drop and by its shutdown of the Trump-era China Initiative program. Edward Wong, New York Times, 17 Sep. 2023 Demand is sky-high—waitlists can stretch for years and have only been getting longer—so the equation is strongly biased in favor of upper-middle-class and affluent families. Elliot Haspel, The New Republic, 8 Sep. 2023 Though the study was small and did not use real patient data, the findings point to the potential of chatbots to help make medical care more efficient and less biased. IEEE Spectrum, 7 Sep. 2023 According to one of the whistle-blowers, Paxton thought that his securities-fraud charges were the result of a biased investigation, and was a willing listener. Rachel Monroe, The New Yorker, 17 Sep. 2023 Yet that decision surely shaped the woman who has gone on to butt heads with a stubborn, backsliding, even biased industry. Lisa Kennedy, Variety, 14 Sep. 2023 Smith argued Trump hasn't proven Chutkan made biased claims. Caitlin Yilek, CBS News, 14 Sep. 2023 However, Wolpe said that bias could still show up in the responses of bots in cases where data and medical research itself is biased. IEEE Spectrum, 7 Sep. 2023 But his supporters are just as loyal, their dedication drawn from decades-long friendships, an appreciation for his many good deeds, and a deep understanding of the often biased way the criminal justice system works against Black people. Erika D. Smith, Los Angeles Times, 29 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'biased.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


see bias entry 1

First Known Use

1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of biased was in 1599

Dictionary Entries Near biased

Cite this Entry

“Biased.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Oct. 2023.

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