con·​fer·​ence | \ ˈkän-f(ə-)rən(t)s How to pronounce conference (audio) , -fərn(t)s, for sense 2 usually kən-ˈfər-ən(t)s \

Definition of conference

1a : a meeting of two or more persons for discussing matters of common concern The president is in conference with his advisers.
b : a usually formal interchange of views : consultation a conference on climate change
c : a meeting of members of the two branches of a legislature to adjust differences
d : caucus
2 or less commonly conferrence \ kən-​ˈfər-​ən(t)s How to pronounce conference (audio) \ : bestowal, conferment the conference of academic degrees
3a : a representative assembly or administrative organization of a religious denomination
b : a territorial division of a religious denomination
4 : an association of athletic teams a football conference

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Other Words from conference

conferential \ ˌkän-​fə-​ˈren(t)-​shəl How to pronounce conference (audio) \ adjective

Examples of conference in a Sentence

The organization held its annual conference in New York this year. national conferences on women's health a conference of foreign ministers Our boss called a conference to discuss the new changes. He spent an hour in conference with the president. the champions of the American Football Conference
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Recent Examples on the Web Bozeman also coached at Abilene Christian and recruited three all-conference selections who helped the Wildcats reach two NCAA tournaments. I.c. Murrell, Arkansas Online, 12 June 2021 The bill, which has 16 co-sponsors in the Senate, was brought to conference, a strictly off-the-record meeting for parties to decide which legislation makes it to the floor for a vote. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, 9 June 2021 She is believed to be the first female head varsity football coach of a big-conference high school team in the Arizona Interscholastic Association. Richard Obert, The Arizona Republic, 9 June 2021 The conference—which is more of a brewer-education event than one geared toward the general public—is a test run of sorts. Chris Morris, Fortune, 9 June 2021 The former president gave his first address after leaving the White House at CPAC’s annual conference, which took place this year in late February in Orlando. Paul Steinhauser, Fox News, 6 June 2021 Yovan earned all-conference honors for the third time in his career but the first as a hitter, previously doing so as the closer in 2017 and as a starter in 2018. James Crepea | The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, 3 June 2021 Valparaiso’s Logan Lockhart also made the all-conference team. Mike Hutton,, 3 June 2021 At this year’s online user conference, Manhattan Momentum, the company announced that several customers were live with this functionality or were in the process of implementing it. Steve Banker, Forbes, 2 June 2021

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

1527, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for conference

see confer

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Time Traveler for conference

Time Traveler

The first known use of conference was in 1527

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Statistics for conference

Last Updated

16 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Conference.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for conference



English Language Learners Definition of conference

: a formal meeting in which many people gather in order to talk about ideas or problems related to a particular topic (such as medicine or business) usually for several days
: a formal meeting in which a small number of people talk about something
US : a group of sports teams that play against each other and that are part of a larger league of teams


con·​fer·​ence | \ ˈkän-fə-rəns How to pronounce conference (audio) , -frəns \

Kids Definition of conference

: a meeting for discussion or exchange of opinions


con·​fer·​ence | \ ˈkän-frəns, -fə-rəns How to pronounce conference (audio) \

Legal Definition of conference

1 : a meeting for consultation, deliberation, discussion, or interchange of opinions a conference on environmental law — see also judicial conference, pretrial conference
2 : a meeting of members of the two branches of a legislature especially to adjust differences in the provisions of a bill passed in different forms by the two branches also : conference committee
3 : caucus


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