con·​duct | \ kən-ˈdəkt also ˈkän-ˌdəkt How to pronounce conduct (audio) \
conducted; conducting; conducts

Definition of conduct

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to direct or take part in the operation or management of conduct an experiment conduct a business conduct an investigation
b : to direct the performance of conduct an orchestra conduct an opera
c : to lead from a position of command conduct a siege conduct a class
2 : to cause (oneself) to act or behave in a particular and especially in a controlled manner conducted herself in a professional manner
3 : to bring by or as if by leading : guide conduct tourists through a museum
4a : to convey in a channel
b : to act as a medium for conveying or transmitting Metals conduct electricity well.

intransitive verb

1 of a road or passage : to show the way : lead
2a : to act as leader or director
b : to have the quality of transmitting light, heat, sound, or electricity


con·​duct | \ ˈkän-(ˌ)dəkt How to pronounce conduct (audio) \

Definition of conduct (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a mode or standard of personal behavior especially as based on moral principles questionable conduct
2 : the act, manner, or process of carrying on : management praised for his conduct of the campaign
3 obsolete : escort, guide

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Other Words from conduct


conductibility \ kən-​ˌdək-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce conductibility (audio) \ noun
conductible \ kən-​ˈdək-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce conductible (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for conduct


conduct, manage, control, direct mean to use one's powers to lead, guide, or dominate. conduct implies taking responsibility for the acts and achievements of a group. conducted negotiations manage implies direct handling and manipulating or maneuvering toward a desired result. manages a meat market control implies a regulating or restraining in order to keep within bounds or on a course. controlling his appetite direct implies constant guiding and regulating so as to achieve smooth operation. directs the store's day-to-day business

synonyms see in addition behave


conduct, direct, and manage mean to provide the leadership or guidance for something. conduct means leading something in person. I will conduct the meeting. direct is used for guiding something that needs constant attention. Our mayor directed the building of a new school. manage means the handling of the small items of something (as a business) or the careful guiding of something to a goal. He's managing the president's reelection campaign.

Examples of conduct in a Sentence

Verb The police are conducting an investigation into last week's robbery. I like the way the company conducts business. The magazine conducted a survey. Who will be conducting the meeting? The committee is expected to conduct hearings in May. He conducts the choir with great skill and emotion. conducting the music of Mozart Our guide slowly conducted us through the museum. Our guide conducted us along the path. Noun A panel investigated her conduct and she was subsequently fired. the President was happy to leave the conduct of foreign affairs to his secretary of state
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Researchers have conducted multiple studies of contributors to wiki projects, trying to discern what exactly makes someone spend their time on something that doesn’t have immediate material rewards. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "How to Make a Website," 11 Nov. 2019 Ramachandra and his colleagues conducted a study on the ecology of the Myristica swamps of Kathalekan hamlet of Siddapur taluk in Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka. Neha Jain, Quartz India, "The ancient swamps along India’s western coast must be saved at all costs," 6 Nov. 2019 Friday will also mark Reinhardt’s first time conducting Emanuel Ax in a concert. Elizabeth Nonemaker,, "BSO concert brings in noted German conductor Ruth Reinhardt and Grammy award winner Emanuel Ax," 5 Nov. 2019 In 2017, a national poll of 2,300 U.S. adults, conducted for the Cato Institute, found that 71 percent of Americans think political correctness has silenced important discussions our country needs to have. John Fund, National Review, "In No Safe Spaces, an Odd Couple Teams Up to Fight Free-Speech Bans," 3 Nov. 2019 My interview with Padilla Romero, conducted in a small conference room in the Yale Center for the Study of Race, Indigeneity, and Transnational Migration, has been edited and condensed for clarity. Rachel Nolan, The New Yorker, "A Yale Student’s Urgent Fight to Save His Mother from Deportation," 1 Nov. 2019 Those are just some of the findings of a poll conducted ahead of Halloween by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. Don Babwin, The Denver Post, "Halloween plans across the country, from candy to costumed pets," 31 Oct. 2019 Baghdadi's head was apparently intact after the explosion, and U.S. operators were convinced of his identity even before a field DNA test was conducted for confirmation, the official said. Author: Joby Warrick, Ellen Nakashima, Dan Lamothe, Anchorage Daily News, "Officials: A well-placed ISIS mole gave up Baghdadi, leading to raid’s success," 30 Oct. 2019 There will reportedly be no autopsy conducted in this case. Benjamin Vanhoose,, "Arkansas Hunter Killed in Unusual Attack by Buck He Shot," 24 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Instead, Waiters remained in the locker room, yet to join teammates on the bench since being suspended for the Oct. 23 season-opening victory over the Memphis Grizzlies for what the Heat deemed as conduct detrimental to the team. Ira Winderman,, "In praising Dragic, did Heat’s Spoelstra send a message to Waiters?," 8 Nov. 2019 The special counsel, Leigh Jeter, detailed the findings in a scathing report that was presented to the city council at the time, criticizing Kiely’s and other city officials’ conduct in paying the lobbying firm. Daniel I. Dorfman,, "Former Lake Forest city manager pleads not guilty after being indicted with official misconduct over lobbying payments," 7 Nov. 2019 After its #MeToo moment, Lloyd’s, an insurance market, found that 45% of staff felt unable to raise concerns about improper conduct. The Economist, "How to make your firm more diverse and inclusive," 7 Nov. 2019 Murrow's on-screen summation of McCarthy's abusive conduct of the Senate helped to bring the Wisconsin lawmaker down. Emily Tillett, CBS News, "Who is Joseph McCarthy, "Face the Nation"'s first-ever guest 65 years ago," 7 Nov. 2019 The ultimate question regarding all this is whether the president’s conduct constitutes a high crime and misdemeanor justifying Trump’s impeachment and removal from office. Nr Editors, National Review, "The Week," 7 Nov. 2019 His awards include the meritorious service ribbon, good conduct medal, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry, jump wings, crewman wings and the combat infantry badge. Michelle Matthews |, al, "Army veteran’s research yields more than 500 years of military service in his family," 6 Nov. 2019 On the scene, Red Paw responders conduct search and rescue operations for pets and transport any injured animals to a veterinary hospital. Elissa Sanci, Woman's Day, "One Firefighter Is Using Her Lifesaving Skills to Save Animals In Danger," 5 Nov. 2019 He was suspended indefinitely in January due to personal conduct issues. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "Cleveland Cavaliers rookie Kevin Porter Jr. suspended one game for bumping official during Sunday’s loss," 5 Nov. 2019

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for conduct

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Medieval Latin conductus, from Latin conducere — see conduce

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Learn More about conduct

Statistics for conduct

Last Updated

14 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for conduct

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

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More Definitions for conduct


How to pronounce conduct (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of conduct

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to plan and do (something, such as an activity)
: to direct the performance of (musicians or singers)
formal : to guide or lead (someone) through or around a place


How to pronounce conduct (audio)

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

somewhat formal
: the way that a person behaves in a particular place or situation
: the way that something is managed or directed


con·​duct | \ kən-ˈdəkt How to pronounce conduct (audio) \
conducted; conducting

Kids Definition of conduct

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to plan and put into operation from a position of command : lead conduct a business
3 : behave sense 1 She conducted herself with courtesy.
4 : to direct the performance of (musicians or singers)
5 : to have the quality of transmitting light, heat, sound, or electricity


con·​duct | \ ˈkän-ˌdəkt How to pronounce conduct (audio) \

Kids Definition of conduct (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : personal behavior
2 : the act or way of managing something the conduct of foreign trade
con·​duct | \ kən-ˈdəkt also ˈkän-ˌdəkt\

Medical Definition of conduct

: to act as a medium for conveying

intransitive verb

: to have the quality of transmitting something (as light, heat, sound, or electricity)

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con·​duct | \ ˈkän-ˌdəkt How to pronounce conduct (audio) \

Legal Definition of conduct

1a : the act, manner, or process of carrying on or managing his conduct of the case was negligent
b : an act or omission to act a crime is that conduct which is defined as criminalLouisiana Revised Statutes
2 : mode or standard of personal behavior

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