cor·re·late | \ˈkȯr-ə-lət, ˈkär-, -ˌlāt\

Definition of correlate 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : either of two things so related that one directly implies or is complementary to the other (such as husband and wife) brain size as a correlate of intelligence

2 : a phenomenon that accompanies another phenomenon, is usually parallel to it, and is related in some way to it … precise electrical correlates of conscious thinking in the human brain …— Bayard Webster


cor·re·late | \ˈkȯr-ə-ˌlāt, ˈkär-\
correlated; correlating

Definition of correlate (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to bear reciprocal or mutual relations : correspond If two things correlate, a change in one thing results in a similar or opposite change in the other thing.

transitive verb

1a : to establish a mutual or reciprocal relation between correlate activities in the lab and the field

b : to show correlation or a causal relationship between There is no evidence correlating height and intelligence.

2 : to present or set forth so as to show relationship He correlates the findings of the scientists, the psychologists, and the mystics.— Eugene Exman

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Other Words from correlate


correlate adjective


correlatable \ˈkȯr-ə-ˌlā-tə-bəl, ˈkär- \ adjective
correlator \ˈkȯr-ə-ˌlā-tər, ˈkär- \ noun

Synonyms for correlate

Synonyms: Verb

associate, connect, identify, link, relate

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Examples of correlate in a Sentence


brain size as a correlate of intelligence the often uneasy relationship between the employer and his correlate, the employee


There is no evidence correlating height and intelligence. a demanding father who always correlated success with hard work
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

While still in training, many report poor quality of life, and suffer from depression and psychological distress, all correlates of burnout. Timothy J. Hoff, STAT, "Medical training programs need to care about physician burnout. Should the rest of us?," 21 June 2018 But, to zoom out a bit, their endeavor seemed to be more like tracing the essential correlates of a skill. Zach Schonbrun, New York Times, "How Do Athletes’ Brains Control Their Movements?," 13 Apr. 2018 Harris said that north correlates with earth, east with air, and west with water. Melanie Savage, Courant Community, "Goodwin Provides Programming And Recreation Year-Round," 28 Mar. 2018 Depression and other mental illnesses are clear correlates of suicide, but only a small proportion of the millions of Americans diagnosed with depression will attempt it. The Economist, "How and where growing numbers of Americans are taking their own lives," 28 Mar. 2018 In particular, limited economic development remains a strong correlate of democratic breakdown. Jason Brownlee, Washington Post, "There’s little evidence that dictators are toppling democracies," 1 June 2017 Soon that perturbation finds a sudden and disturbing practical correlate. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, "“Personal Shopper” and the Misunderstood Art of Kristen Stewart," 15 Mar. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But, by pooling the work of so many groups, the Brainstorm Consortium was able to go beyond this and cross-correlate the putative genetic underpinnings of 25 psychiatric and neurological problems. The Economist, "A big collaboration is trying to understand diseases of the psyche," 28 June 2018 Just as when Curry was drafted in 2009, there are skeptics because of Young's slight build, and correlating defensive issues. Tim Bontemps,, "Luka Doncic, Trae Young and Michael Porter Jr. are the great NBA draft unknowns," 21 June 2018 This is done, generally, by correlating common attributes (such as IP addresses, other browser or device information or hashed email addresses) across devices, to infer a common identity across multiple channels., "San Diego Union-Tribune Privacy Policy," 21 June 2018 In a technique called interferometry, computers correlate the signals from pairs of dishes to build a much sharper image than a single dish could produce. Daniel Clery, Science | AAAS, "New radio telescope in South Africa will study galaxy formation," 19 June 2018 Using state-level data from a variety of sources, Chris reports on the factors correlated with more exercise versus less. Paulina Firozi, Washington Post, "The Health 202: 'Gag clauses' mean you might be paying more for prescription drugs than you need to," 5 July 2018 Ultimately, our physical output is directly correlated with our internal experiences. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What June's Leo Horoscope Means for You," 29 May 2018 It was directly correlated to my husband’s infidelity., "What It's Really Like When Your Partner Cheats on You While You're Pregnant," 10 May 2018 Retail sales have picked up—but they are poorly correlated with overall consumer spending. The Economist, "The economy has slowed to a standstill, largely because of Brexit," 21 June 2018

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


1643, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1742, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for correlate


back-formation from correlation


see correlate entry 1

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Learn More about correlate

Phrases Related to correlate

be correlated with

Statistics for correlate

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Time Traveler for correlate

The first known use of correlate was in 1643

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More Definitions for correlate



English Language Learners Definition of correlate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: either one of two things that are closely connected or correlated with each other



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

: to have a close connection with something : to have a correlation to something

: to show that a close connection exists between (two or more things)

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Comments on correlate

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


lying above or upon

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