correlation

noun
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

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Other Words from correlation

correlational \ ˌkȯr-​ə-​ˈlā-​shnəl How to pronounce correlational (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.
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Recent Examples on the Web

This correlation was not influenced by dog activity levels or dog personality. Bronwyn Orr, Quartz, "Your stress is hurting your dog, according to a new study," 9 June 2019 This can get confusing, though, because there isn’t a perfect year-to-year correlation between the two. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "The oceans absorbed extra CO₂ in the 2000s," 31 May 2019 The point is, the correlation between high dietary fiber intake and reduced risk of health conditions does not necessarily equal causation with the intake of fiber itself. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "How Much Fiber Should I Be Eating to Feel Regular?," 30 May 2019 For us, that story is not about there being a physical correlation between that time period and our future time period. Jessica Radloff, Glamour, "All Your Questions About the This Is Us Season Three Finale, Answered," 3 Apr. 2019 Not surprisingly, there appears to be a correlation between a country’s electronic transactions and its level of household debt, with Canada, South Korea, the Netherlands, and, yes, Sweden ranking high in both categories. Town & Country, "Is This the End of Cash?," 28 Jan. 2019 There were correlations between the genetic risk for ADHD and a range of other conditions, including depression and anorexia. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Large genetic study finds first genes connected with ADHD," 27 Nov. 2018 Other than anecdotal evidence, there is no data that shows there is a correlation between tiny houses and exits to permanent housing. Vianna Davila, The Seattle Times, "Tiny-home villages are a key part of Seattle’s homeless strategy. So why did one village lack case management for three months?," 16 July 2018 Extra: Try to find out if there is a correlation between color and how much a material warms up when placed in the sun. Science Buddies, Scientific American, "Warm in the Sun," 12 July 2018

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.

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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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Statistics for correlation

Last Updated

15 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for correlation

The first known use of correlation was in 1561

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More Definitions for correlation

correlation

noun

English Language Learners Definition of correlation

: the relationship between things that happen or change together

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