ed·​u·​cate | \ˈe-jə-ˌkāt \
educated; educating

Definition of educate 

transitive verb

1a : to provide schooling for chose to educate their children at home

b : to train by formal instruction and supervised practice especially in a skill, trade, or profession

2a : to develop mentally, morally, or aesthetically especially by instruction

b : to provide with information : inform educating themselves about changes in the industry

3 : to persuade or condition to feel, believe, or act in a desired way educate the public to support our position

intransitive verb

: to educate a person or thing

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for educate

teach, instruct, educate, train, discipline, school mean to cause to acquire knowledge or skill. teach applies to any manner of imparting information or skill so that others may learn. taught us a lot about our planet instruct suggests methodical or formal teaching. instructs raw recruits in military drill educate implies development of the mind. more things than formal schooling serve to educate a person train stresses instruction and drill with a specific end in view. trained foreign pilots to operate the new aircraft discipline implies training in habits of order and precision. a disciplined mind school implies training or disciplining especially in what is hard to master. schooled the horse in five gaits

Examples of educate in a Sentence

Parents trust schools to educate their children. The job of our public schools is to educate.

Recent Examples on the Web

This is what happens when health care fades from the headlines, when the federal government pulls its resources, and nobody steps in — media or celebrity — to educate the public. Dylan Scott, Vox, "Obamacare enrollment is almost over and sign-ups are lagging," 12 Dec. 2018 For some designers in Japan, using Designart as an opportunity to educate the public is crucial. Sarah Hucal, Curbed, "Designart Tokyo, in second-annual event, shows promise," 27 Nov. 2018 My inspiration for developing The Scope was first and foremost to educate consumers—especially younger millennials who are starting to buy their first homes—about the craftsmanship and materials behind luxury design in an editorial setting. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "From Goop Lab to One Kings Lane: 8 New Design Destinations to Know," 7 Nov. 2018 In the midst of the #MeToo era, Bachelor in Paradise has a unique opportunity to educate its viewers. De Elizabeth, Allure, "Bachelor in Paradise," 29 Aug. 2018 Public health workers are hitting communities with times and locations of needle-exchange operations and trying to educate the public about HIV. Terry Demio,, "Living with HIV: Fueled by heroin, HIV makes an alarming resurgence in Cincinnati," 11 July 2018 Jada Pinkett Smith is on a mission to educate the public about human trafficking in the United States. Matt Friedman, Cnn And Dami Odutayo, CNN, "World Cup child trafficking plot stopped in Nigeria," 12 June 2018 And like today, many in the 19th Century anti-vaccination movement hailed from large cities, were educated and earned a decent living. Sara Novak, Discover Magazine, "The Long History of America's Anti-Vaccination Movement," 24 Nov. 2018 For me, educating yourself on the issues that strike a passion within you has always been the foundation of activism and civic engagement. Hailey Colborn, Seventeen, "Miss Teen USA Hailey Colborn On Why You NEED To Get Out There and Vote," 25 Oct. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of educate

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for educate

Middle English, to rear, from Latin educatus, past participle of educare to rear, educate, from educere to lead forth — more at educe

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about educate

Dictionary Entries near educate








Statistics for educate

Last Updated

17 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for educate

The first known use of educate was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for educate



English Language Learners Definition of educate

: to teach (someone) especially in a school, college, or university

: to give (someone) information about something : to train (someone) to do something


ed·​u·​cate | \ˈe-jə-ˌkāt \
educated; educating

Kids Definition of educate

1 : to provide schooling for Her parents are educating her at home.

2 : to develop the mind and morals of especially by formal instruction : teach Teachers work hard to educate their students.

3 : to provide with necessary information The public should be educated about how to save energy.

Other Words from educate

educator \ˈe-​jə-​ˌkā-​tər \ noun

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on educate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with educate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for educate

Spanish Central: Translation of educate

Nglish: Translation of educate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of educate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on educate

What made you want to look up educate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a knickknack or trinket

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!