cog·​ni·​tion | \ käg-ˈni-shən How to pronounce cognition (audio) \

Definition of cognition

: cognitive mental processes A concussion impaired the patient's cognition. also : a product of these processes

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Other Words from cognition

cognitional \ käg-​ˈnish-​nəl How to pronounce cognitional (audio) , -​ˈni-​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Examples of cognition in a Sentence

disabilities affecting cognition and judgment

Recent Examples on the Web

Most of Santos' academic work has been on animal cognition. Rob Reid, Ars Technica, "Ars on your lunch break: Finding Pharaoh and spotting looters from orbit," 1 Nov. 2018 Some research suggests a negative effect on cognition, while other studies failed to find much correlation. Dan Adams,, "21 questions answered about legal marijuana in Massachusetts," 21 June 2018 At the time, the discrepancy between symbolic A.I. and animal cognition didn’t necessarily seem like an issue. Naomi Fry, The New Yorker, "The Mind-Expanding Ideas of Andy Clark," 26 Mar. 2018 These effects—including changes in salivation, sweating, urination, bowel movements, or cognition—are more common with atypical antipsychotics. Kimberly Truong, SELF, "11 Side Effects of Antipsychotics You Should Know About," 7 Dec. 2018 At the time, it was widely believed that skull size, or cranial capacity, was a marker of superior intelligence and advanced cognition. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "There’s new evidence confirming bias of the “father of scientific racism”," 4 Oct. 2018 Kim has impaired cognition and short-term memory challenges and a series of other medical issues. The Seattle Times, "Washington’s most vulnerable can’t access critical dental care," 23 July 2018 The World of Nootropics and Adaptogens Nootropics, a term first coined by Dr. Corneliu E. Giurgea in 1972, are ingestible compounds designed to enhance facets of human cognition, such as focus and mood. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "From CBD to Sex-Positivity, the 8 Biggest Wellness Trends of 2018," 10 Dec. 2018 It had been suggested that some aspects of cognition were dependent upon the speed and efficiency of nerve impulses, which in turn depends on this insulation. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "The genetics of education: 1,271 genes account for 10% of the variation," 25 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cognition

Middle English cognicioun "comprehension, ability to comprehend," borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French cognicion "knowledge, jurisdiction," borrowed from Latin cognitiōn-, cognitiō "act of getting to know, comprehension, investigation," from cogni-, variant stem of cognōscere "to get to know, acquire knowledge of, become acquainted with, investigate" (from co- co- + gnōscere, nōscere "to get to know," inchoative derivative from Indo-European *ǵneh3-, *ǵṇh3- "to know, recognize") + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns — more at know entry 1

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Statistics for cognition

Last Updated

18 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for cognition

The first known use of cognition was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for cognition



English Language Learners Definition of cognition

technical : conscious mental activities : the activities of thinking, understanding, learning, and remembering


cog·​ni·​tion | \ käg-ˈnish-ən How to pronounce cognition (audio) \

Medical Definition of cognition

1 : cognitive mental processes
2 : a conscious intellectual act conflict between cognitions

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Comments on cognition

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


not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped

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