de·​vel·​op·​men·​tal | \ dē-ˌve-ləp-ˈmen-tᵊl How to pronounce developmental (audio) \

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 \ dē-​ˌve-​ləp-​ˈmen-​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce developmentally (audio) \ 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

For almost three decades, McLeese has been a storyteller, activist, mentor and advocate, especially for people with developmental and cognitive disabilities. Joanne Davidson, The Denver Post, "Seen: Artist Nengudi honored at Bonfils-Stanton Foundation awards," 5 June 2019 The Europa Clipper and Europa Lander missions are required by law to be launched in 2023 and 2025 on NASA's Space Launch System, but that is unlikely to happen because of developmental and workforce challenges, according to the inspector. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Rocket Report: Omega rocket blows a nozzle, NASA still wants 2020 SLS launch," 31 May 2019 One of the most basic developmental needs of young people is to be accepted by their peers, so the fear of being socially rejected is powerful. Elizabeth Bernstein, WSJ, "The Complex Reasons Sexual Assaults Go Unreported," 29 Sep. 2018 Knowsley expects to spend $192 million in the next budget year, Mr. Moorhead says, with 60 percent of that absorbed by care for the elderly and services for children with health and developmental needs. Peter S. Goodman, New York Times, "In Britain, Austerity Is Changing Everything," 28 May 2018 Mustafa Anabtawi received the honor for founding The Alchemist Lab, an educational center offering children in cities, remote villages, and refugee camps additional skills to help with their education, developmental needs, and confidence. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "Anita Hill Delivers a Powerful Call to Action at the 2019 DVF Awards," 12 Apr. 2019 Others have worked on developmental timing, trying to show that adult humans retain some of the traits of ancient children. John Hawks, WSJ, "‘The Goodness Paradox’ Review: The Benefits of Good Breeding," 25 Jan. 2019 Under Martz and Warner, an undrafted player whose career may have languished if not for a pro developmental league, the Rams reached two Super Bowls, winning one. Tom Krasovic,, "What should new San Diego football team call itself?," 29 May 2018 There are 312 more positions available in the developmental league. Eli Horowitz, New York Times, "Welcome to the W.N.B.A.: Good Luck Finding a Job," 5 May 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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Statistics for developmental

Last Updated

19 Jun 2019

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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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