de·vel·op·men·tal | \dē-ˌve-ləp-ˈmen-tᵊl \

Definition of developmental 

1a : of, relating to, or being development developmental processes developmental biology broadly : experimental sense 2 developmental aircraft

b : serving economic development developmental highways

2 : designed to assist growth or bring about improvement (as of a skill) developmental toys

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Other Words from developmental

developmentally \-tᵊl-ē \ adverb

Synonyms for developmental


experimental, pilot, trial

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Examples of developmental in a Sentence

A drop in temperature can slow the plant's developmental process. a child with developmental abnormalities My theory is still in its developmental stage.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Research finds that young children whose families receive SNAP are more likely to have regular access to food, be in good health and are at lower risk of developmental delays. Susan B. Parks,, "Food stamps can make the difference for struggling O.C. families, many of them working," 5 July 2018 Her resolve was strengthened after a recent Military Times article about the detection of water contaminates linked to cancer and developmental delays in children at military bases nationwide, including Patrick Air Force Base. Jason Kelly And Melonie Holt, ajc, "High number of cancer cases among Florida high school friends prompts doctor to urge investigation," 20 June 2018 Two harried teachers look on as other toddlers play around Joaquim, who has severe developmental delays after being born with a small head. Washington Post, "Some Brazil ‘Zika kids’ try school, others fight to survive," 7 June 2018 Advocates say that low rate does not reflect the level of need, but rather the fact that many young children with developmental delays never get screened. Jocelyn Wiener, sacbee, "That early help you need for your child doesn't come soon enough," 29 May 2018 There are one-piece suits that help keep children from accessing the contents of their diapers, a common behavior among children with certain developmental delays. Emily Matchar, Smithsonian, "Designing “Adaptive Clothing” For Those With Special Needs," 8 May 2018 The problem with so much clutter at shooting guard is the lack of minutes for a developmental project such as Jones. Ira Winderman,, "With Ellington back, how do Heat manage glut at shooting guard?," 13 July 2018 After all, siblings are generally exposed to the same developmental conditions, whether parental, geographic, or economic. Adam Sternbergh, The Cut, "The Extinction of the Middle Child," 11 July 2018 Nineteen years later, Smereck is an undrafted prospect and one of many prospects to participate in the Coyotes' recent developmental camp at Gila River Arena. Clevis Murray, azcentral, "Arizona Coyotes prospect Jalen Smereck talks challenges as Black hockey player," 6 July 2018

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

1849, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

25 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for developmental

The first known use of developmental was in 1849

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English Language Learners Definition of developmental

: of or relating to the growth or development of someone or something

: designed to help a child grow or learn

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