di·​plo·​ma | \ də-ˈplō-mə How to pronounce diploma (audio) \
plural diplomas

Definition of diploma

1 plural also diplomata\ də-​ˈplō-​mə-​tə How to pronounce diploma (audio) \ : an official or state document : charter
2 : a writing usually under seal conferring some honor or privilege
3 : a document bearing record of graduation from or of a degree conferred by an educational institution

Examples of diploma in a Sentence

He earned his high school diploma by attending classes at night.
Recent Examples on the Web He was admitted to Catholic University that summer without a high school diploma and with minimal ability to speak English. Washington Post, 10 May 2022 After her husband’s death in December 1967, Mrs. Redding found herself, at age 25, terrified and grieving, without a high school diploma and responsible for raising the couple’s three small children. New York Times, 17 Apr. 2022 The unemployment rate for people without a high school diploma fell really sharply from 6.3% in January to 4.3% in February. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 17 Mar. 2022 Finding work that pays enough to make rent has been a constant challenge for her without a high school diploma, so calling churches, shelter hotlines and any other kind of case manager became its own full-time job. Lauren Hepler, San Francisco Chronicle, 13 Oct. 2021 The 2020 election ratified the long-term trend lines in American politics — that the Democrats are becoming the party of the college-educated, while the GOP is increasingly the refuge for voters without a university diploma. Will Bunch, Star Tribune, 26 July 2021 Those who have a bachelor's degree or higher are somewhat less likely to own a gun, compared to those who have a high school diploma or only completed some college. Harmeet Kaur, CNN, 2 June 2022 Phyllis Harvey-Hall grew up in Enterprise in a family that placed a high value on education even though her parents did not have a high school diploma, according to her campaign website. Mike Cason | Mcason@al.com, al, 20 May 2022 Émilie has a diploma from a prestigious university but is working—for vague reasons—as an Internet-service salesperson at a call center. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 14 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of diploma

1622, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for diploma

Latin, passport, diploma, from Greek diplōma folded paper, passport, from diploun to double, from diploos

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Time Traveler for diploma

Time Traveler

The first known use of diploma was in 1622

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Statistics for diploma

Last Updated

28 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Diploma.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/diploma. Accessed 1 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for diploma


di·​plo·​ma | \ də-ˈplō-mə How to pronounce diploma (audio) \

Kids Definition of diploma

: a certificate that shows a person has finished a course of study or graduated from a school


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