guide·​line | \ˈgīd-ˌlīn \

Definition of guideline 

: a line by which one is guided: such as

a : a cord or rope to aid a passer over a difficult point or to permit retracing a course

b : an indication or outline of policy or conduct

Examples of guideline in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In the meantime, here’s are some basic guidelines: 1. Dana Hedgpeth, Washington Post, "What you need to know about the D.C. water advisory," 13 July 2018 If piercing an infant’s ears is culturally important, then go ahead using the [proper] safety guidelines., "Kylie Jenner Pierces 5-Month-Old Daughter Stormi's Ears: How Safe Is the Procedure for Babies?," 12 July 2018 According to the conventional wisdom of the internet, there’s one simple guideline for responding to trolls: don’t feed them. Film Crit Hulk, The Verge, "Don’t feed the trolls, and other hideous lies," 12 July 2018 With no guidelines in place, expect more political attacks this year about whether F.B.I. and Justice Department actions affect the midterm elections, namely the special counsel inquiry. New York Times, "The Report on the F.B.I.’s Clinton Investigation Is 500 Pages. Our Experts Broke It Down.," 14 June 2018 The new guidelines, which will be presented this week at the European Congress on Obesity in Vienna, are based on a review of data from 51 million people, including 3.5 million cancer cases. Amanda Macmillan,, "Following These 10 Steps Can Slash Your Cancer Risk by 40%," 24 May 2018 However, the new guidelines for inspecting Apaches includes the entire fleet, regardless of location. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Army Is Inspecting Its Entire Fleet of Apache Helicopters for a Critical Flaw​​," 16 May 2018 Ultimately, the Juvenile Court sets the broad guidelines, such as how often visits should happen and where. The Republic |, "Worker tied up, child abducted: Here are safeguards for supervised parental visits," 10 May 2018 Applicants must be 60 or older, reside in a household that meets income guidelines, and be a resident of the town of Windsor. Courant Community, "Community News For The Windsor Edition," 1 May 2018

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

1785, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

24 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for guideline

The first known use of guideline was in 1785

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More Definitions for guideline



English Language Learners Definition of guideline

: a rule or instruction that shows or tells how something should be done


guide·​line | \ˈgīd-ˌlīn \

Kids Definition of guideline

: a rule about how something should be done

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Comments on guideline

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


obstinately defiant of authority

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