noun, often attributive
fresh·​man | \ ˈfresh-mən How to pronounce freshman (audio) \

Definition of freshman

1 : a first-year student

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Examples of freshman in a Sentence

My daughter's a freshman at UCLA. He was the best freshman in professional basketball this year.

Recent Examples on the Web

Reese Witherspoon's lookalike daughter Ava Phillippe is finishing her freshmen year of college—and Reese had a very relatable reaction to her daughter's departure for college. Maggie Maloney, Town & Country, "Reese Witherspoon Cried When Her Daughter Ava Left For College," 20 May 2019 Private colleges and universities are offering bigger discounts for freshmen amid fierce competition for a price-conscious pool of students. Jake Holland, WSJ, "Private Colleges Offer Record Discounts as Tuition Costs Rise," 9 May 2019 Of their endorsed candidates, three incumbents and three freshmen are now serving in the House. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Knock Down the House Reminds Us that AOC's Triumph Almost Wasn't," 3 May 2019 Josephine Langford as Tessa Young: A freshman at her new university who is ready for everything that college life is going to give her. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Everything You Need to Know About "After" Starring Josephine Langford and Hero Fiennes-Tiffin," 1 Apr. 2019 For another six months, these seven freshman pilots cut their teeth on T-38 supersonic jet trainers. Alex Hollings, Popular Mechanics, "An F-35 Pilot Explains What It's Like To Fly the Joint Strike Fighter," 5 Mar. 2019 Now, Sophia is a freshman in college and frequently gives everyone a glimpse into her life on Instagram. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, "Every Question You Have About 'Happy!' Star Christopher Meloni’s Wife and Two Kids, Answered," 27 Mar. 2019 Cameron Champ was a freshman in high school and a graduate of The First Tee program, missing only the means to travel the country to play junior golf tournaments with hopes of getting noticed outside Northern California. Doug Ferguson, The Seattle Times, "Big attention for rookie Champ begins with small favor," 14 Nov. 2018 Albert Okwuegbunam, Missouri Okwuegbunam tied Fant for the national lead among tight ends with 11 touchdown grabs, and did so as a freshman in a conference not always friendly to inexperienced skill players. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, "The 10 best tight ends in college football," 13 July 2018

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

1552, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for freshman

Last Updated

26 May 2019

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Time Traveler for freshman

The first known use of freshman was in 1552

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More Definitions for freshman



English Language Learners Definition of freshman

: a student in the first year of high school or college
chiefly US : someone who is starting a job or activity


fresh·​man | \ ˈfresh-mən How to pronounce freshman (audio) \
plural freshmen\ -​mən \

Kids Definition of freshman

: a first year student in high school or college

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More from Merriam-Webster on freshman

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for freshman

Spanish Central: Translation of freshman

Nglish: Translation of freshman for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of freshman for Arabic Speakers

Comments on freshman

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


a strong desire or propensity

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