cor·​re·​la·​tion | \ ˌkȯr-ə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce correlation (audio) , ˌkär- \

Definition of correlation

1 : the state or relation of being correlated specifically : a relation existing between phenomena or things or between mathematical or statistical variables which tend to vary, be associated, or occur together in a way not expected on the basis of chance alone … the obviously high positive correlation between scholastic aptitude and college entrance … — James B. Conant
2 : the act of correlating

Other Words from correlation

correlational \ ˌkȯr-​ə-​ˈlā-​shnəl How to pronounce correlation (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl , ˌkär-​ \ adjective

Examples of correlation in a Sentence

the correlation of brain size and intelligence Researchers have found a direct correlation between smoking and lung cancer. She says that there's no correlation between being thin and being happy.
Recent Examples on the Web While the correlation between income and voting is well-established, the size of that gap surprised researchers, Kousser said. Deborah Sullivan Brennan, San Diego Union-Tribune, 21 June 2022 The correlation between the Nasdaq 100 and Bitcoin was recently near all-time highs. Taylor Locke, Fortune, 15 June 2022 In fact, this correlation was stronger than having positive feelings about STEM or having access to specific courses or experiences. Talia Milgrom-elcott, Forbes, 8 June 2022 When measured over the past 50 years, according to my firm’s analysis, the CAPE’s R-squared is 52%, which is very significant at the 95% confidence level that statisticians often use when determining if a correlation is genuine. Mark Hulbert, WSJ, 4 June 2022 But that's far from the case: The bank's data showed that in the 10 years prior to Covid, the correlation between luxury spending and the S&P 500 was less than 30%. Nicole Goodkind, CNN, 29 May 2022 The correlation between home values and Prop. 13 tax savings is particularly clear when looking at the Bay Area cities with the highest disparities. Kellie Hwang, San Francisco Chronicle, 16 May 2022 Yet the correlation here is even less clear; only 18 percent of the probable cases tested positive for COVID. Sarah Zhang, The Atlantic, 13 May 2022 The argument that more gun purchases contributed to the murder spike was also floated by The Atlantic earlier this year, but experts at the Heritage Foundation explained that correlation is not causation. Fox News, 29 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'correlation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of correlation

1561, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for correlation

Medieval Latin correlation-, correlatio, from Latin com- + relation-, relatio relation

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Time Traveler for correlation

Time Traveler

The first known use of correlation was in 1561

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Dictionary Entries Near correlation



correlation coefficient

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Statistics for correlation

Last Updated

4 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Correlation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

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