for·​mu·​late | \ ˈfȯr-myə-ˌlāt How to pronounce formulate (audio) \
formulated; formulating

Definition of formulate

transitive verb

1a : to reduce to or express in a formula formulate the area of a rectangle
b : to put into a systematized statement or expression formulate long-term goals
c : devise formulate a policy formulate a plan
2a : to develop a formula for the preparation of (something, such as a soap or plastic) a plastic specially formulated to resist high temperatures
b : to prepare according to a formula formulate the vaccine against malaria

Other Words from formulate

formulator \ ˈfȯr-​myə-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce formulate (audio) \ noun

Examples of formulate in a Sentence

a plastic specially formulated to resist high temperatures the doctor was trying to formulate a good way to tell her that she would need surgery
Recent Examples on the Web In addition, Sony now plans to formulate an initiative to provide financial assistance to employees who might have to travel to different states to receive reproductive care. Nathan Grayson, Washington Post, 16 May 2022 Investigators reviewed the medical records of 770 Medicare patients discharged from 629 hospitals in 2018 to formulate a national rate on how often patients were harmed, whether preventable or not. Ken Alltucker, USA TODAY, 12 May 2022 This revelation drove them to formulate their products with all-natural, high quality ingredients. Grooming Playbook, The Salt Lake Tribune, 11 May 2022 The league is a, is a founding member of judicial votes count, but doesn’t formulate any of the questions that end up on the questionnaires. Laura Johnston, cleveland, 10 May 2022 Many things angered him: someone failing to tend to one of his houseplants, a student unable to formulate a thought. Nikhil Krishnan, The New Yorker, 9 May 2022 In April, prime minister Narendra Modi’s government sought six more months to formulate the rules. Manavi Kapur, Quartz, 9 May 2022 What inspired you to formulate skin care specifically for people of color and Black people? Brooklyn White, Essence, 3 May 2022 Meanwhile, California transit agencies scrambled to formulate messages on mask-wearing guidance and requirements on their transit systems. Laura Blasey, Los Angeles Times, 19 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of formulate

1855, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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The first known use of formulate was in 1855

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Last Updated

19 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Formulate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for formulate


for·​mu·​late | \ ˈfȯr-myə-ˌlāt How to pronounce formulate (audio) \
formulated; formulating

Kids Definition of formulate

: to create, invent, or produce by careful thought and effort formulate a medicine formulate an answer

More from Merriam-Webster on formulate

Nglish: Translation of formulate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of formulate for Arabic Speakers


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