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 The bureau will oversee the implementation and conduct another review to ensure every issue has been addressed. Fox News, "Wisconsin National Guard leader resigns over allegations of mishandling sexual harassment complaints," 10 Dec. 2019 That other college advisers might have more experience or conduct services in person doesn’t matter to those clients, or hasn’t occurred to them. Chris Quintana, USA TODAY, "This Harvard grad has made millions on U.S. college admissions for international students," 9 Dec. 2019 The bureau will oversee implementation and conduct another review to ensure every issue has been addressed. Washington Post, "Wisconsin Guard leader resigns in wake of sex assault review," 9 Dec. 2019 The arrest comes 26 hours after Floyd Berry, 49, was arrested on accusations of conducting unlawful strip searches on at least six women while on duty as a patrol officer. Taylor Pettaway,, "Second Bexar County deputy arrested in 26-hour span," 9 Dec. 2019 The Cincinnati Pops’ festive annual holiday concerts at Music Hall feature John Morris Russell conducting and the return of Broadway and television actress and singer Megan Hilty. Luann Gibbs,, "Things to do this week in Cincinnati: Dec. 9-15," 9 Dec. 2019 After conducting his analysis, the detective typed up a two-page report. Ken Armstrong, ProPublica, "Why Are Cops Around the World Using This Outlandish Mind-Reading Tool?," 8 Dec. 2019 Last week, a panel of 737 pilots conducted simulator tests on the software updates, and their findings are being reviewed by regulators this week. Kris Van Cleave, CBS News, "Boeing tries to restore confidence in 737 Max in stakeholders' presentation," 8 Dec. 2019 One nonprofit the retired Scottsdale couple supports is Esperança, which conducts medical clinics for lower-income people around the Valley and organizes medical missions to Latin America and Africa in which surgeries are performed. Russ Wiles, azcentral, "Tax changes have hurt nonprofit organizations as fewer people give to charity," 8 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At the other is the world's most powerful man: President Donald Trump, accused of conduct so destructive to America's political system that critics say he should be ejected from office. Stephen Collinson, CNN, "A clash between two giants, each carving their name in history," 5 Dec. 2019 On top of everything, U.S. Department of Justice fraud investigators opened a probe into Ford's conduct involving the transmission dating to 2010. Phoebe Wall Howard,, "Ford workers break their silence on faulty transmissions: 'Everybody knew'," 5 Dec. 2019 The next month, four engineers were fired from Google for allegedly violating its data security policies and code of conduct. Ananya Bhattacharya, Quartz India, "Besides the proverbial torch, Google founders are passing a laundry list of troubles to Sundar Pichai," 4 Dec. 2019 Poor behavior at the top A 2019 survey from PwC found that CEOs are being ousted not just for poor financial performance but increasingly more for reasons tied to personal conduct or other ethical issues. Michelle Cheng, Quartz at Work, "The 6 major signs that a company’s culture is in trouble," 3 Dec. 2019 Internet services increasingly help their users engage in pro-social conduct online that they might not have pursued in the offline world. Eric Goldman And Jess Miers, Ars Technica, "Why can’t Internet companies stop awful content?," 27 Nov. 2019 Most of the conduct that was censured occurred after Paraskevas left as CFO in November 2012. Jack Farchy,, "The Men Who Would Be King of Glencore Move Into the Spotlight," 29 Oct. 2019 Most New Orleans nonselective charter schools practiced no-excuses discipline; the slightest deviation from dress or conduct codes resulted in punishment, which in turn led to sky-high suspension and expulsion rates. Andrea Gabor, Harper's magazine, "The K-12 Takeover," 28 Oct. 2019 Past hiring sprees ordered by political decree have led to more problems with conduct at the immigration enforcement agency. Justin Rohrlich, Quartz, "Criminal misconduct by US border officers has reached a 5-year high," 24 Oct. 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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Time Traveler for conduct

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for conduct

Last Updated

12 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Conduct.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 13 December 2019.

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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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Comments on conduct

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


easily led, controlled, or managed

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