cal·​cu·​la·​tion | \ ˌkal-kyə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce calculation (audio) \

Definition of calculation

1a : the process or an act of calculating
b : the result of an act of calculating
2a : studied care in analyzing or planning
b : cold heartless planning to promote self-interest

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Other Words from calculation

calculational \ ˌkal-​kyə-​ˈlāsh-​nəl How to pronounce calculational (audio) , -​ˈlā-​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Examples of calculation in a Sentence

According to experts' calculations, that star will explode within two billion years. The computer can do millions of calculations each second. Careful calculation is required to determine the required amount of fuel. The book reveals the cold calculations that were behind the government's policies. His positions are based on political calculation of what voters want to hear.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Global carbon dioxide emissions have increased 55 percent in the last 20 years, the calculations show. Seth Borenstein, The Seattle Times, "Climate reality check: Global carbon pollution up in 2018," 5 Dec. 2018 But what was the calculation from your part, from being in this kind of dicey position? Eric Johnson, Recode, "Former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates explains how Donald Trump is trying to corrupt the Justice Department," 12 Nov. 2018 For recreational drone users, the calculation is even simpler: follow the rules, and don’t harass the wildlife. Rachel Becker, The Verge, "That adorable baby bear clip captures the dark side of wildlife videos," 6 Nov. 2018 The calculation takes the area’s median family income and housing costs into consideration, and categorizes income levels accordingly. Natasha Bach, Fortune, "Making a Six-Figure Salary in San Francisco? Your Family May Still Be Considered 'Low Income'," 28 June 2018 But those calculations are challenges (and opportunities) to assert that a woman's time isn’t available at permanent discount. Emma Goldberg, Glamour, "A Penny for Her Thoughts? Women in the Gig Economy Struggle to Get Paid," 16 Apr. 2019 With Bellhop, those calculations took less than a minute. Jessi Hempel, WIRED, "Uber and Lyft's Never-Ending Quest to Crush Price Comparison Apps," 11 July 2018 Those calculations used the government’s ship construction and retirement schedules and were corroborated by multiple experts and military analysts. Matt Sussis And Yingjie Gu, USA TODAY, "Navy’s planned shipbuilding spree overlooks looming sailor shortage," 29 June 2018 Those calculations are sharply contested by Sobel, who argues that L.A. officials are improperly counting apartments that existed long before the settlement was struck or were otherwise ineligible. Emily Alpert Reyes,, "Garcetti says L.A. can resume disputed ban on overnight sidewalk sleeping," 22 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for calculation

Last Updated

16 May 2019

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Time Traveler for calculation

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

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More Definitions for calculation



English Language Learners Definition of calculation

: a process or result of calculating something
: careful thought and planning that is done usually for selfish reasons


cal·​cu·​la·​tion | \ ˌkal-kyə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce calculation (audio) \

Kids Definition of calculation

: the process or result of adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing Careful calculation is required. Our calculations indicate a slight increase.

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Comments on calculation

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


a strong desire or propensity

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