het·​ero·​ge·​ne·​i·​ty | \ ˌhe-tə-rō-jə-ˈnē-ə-tē How to pronounce heterogeneity (audio) , ˌhe-trō- \

Definition of heterogeneity

: the quality or state of consisting of dissimilar or diverse elements : the quality or state of being heterogeneous cultural heterogeneity

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of heterogeneity in a Sentence

the cultural heterogeneity of its residents is a point of pride for the city
Recent Examples on the Web But on a larger scale, heterogeneity typically lowers the herd immunity threshold. Quanta Magazine, "The Tricky Math of Herd Immunity for COVID-19," 30 June 2020 While not as diverse or accessible as public spaces, third places rely on a certain amount of heterogeneity to convey social importance and bring vitality. Setha Low, The Conversation, "How cafes, bars, gyms, barbershops and other ‘third places’ create our social fabric," 1 May 2020 He is particularly pleased with the decreasing dispersion in growth rates between countries, and declining heterogeneity of borrowing rates. WSJ, "ECB's March Policy Decision: Bank Keeps Rates Unchanged," 9 Mar. 2017 According to this idea, genetic heterogeneity allows bodies to be more adaptive and resilient. Quanta Magazine, "I Contain Multitudes," 21 Aug. 2014 The heterogeneity of the two parties helped people understand their political opponents: Partisans were more likely to know someone whose politics were different than their own. Sabrina Tavernise, New York Times, "In 7 Days and 3 Protests, the Nation’s Divisions on Glaring Display," 24 Jan. 2020 But there was some heterogeneity between the groups. Michael Nedelman, CNN, "Ketamine may treat harmful drinking behavior by 'rewriting drinking memories,' researchers say," 26 Nov. 2019 Built on a hilly plateau above two river valleys, and offering easy access to the sea, the walled city was known for its heterogeneity and cross-cultural fertilization. Joshua Hammer, Smithsonian, "The Hidden City of Myanmar," 21 Nov. 2019 This bacterial individuality — known more technically as phenotypic heterogeneity — upends decades of traditional thinking about microbes. Quanta Magazine, "Bacterial Clones Show Surprising Individuality," 4 Sep. 2019

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

1641, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for heterogeneity

see heterogeneous

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about heterogeneity

Time Traveler for heterogeneity

Time Traveler

The first known use of heterogeneity was in 1641

See more words from the same year

Statistics for heterogeneity

Last Updated

14 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Heterogeneity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/heterogeneity. Accessed 15 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for heterogeneity


het·​ero·​ge·​ne·​ity | \ ˌhet-ə-rō-jə-ˈnē-ət-ē, ˌhe-trō- How to pronounce heterogeneity (audio) \
plural heterogeneities

Medical Definition of heterogeneity

: the quality or state of being heterogeneous

More from Merriam-Webster on heterogeneity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for heterogeneity

Britannica English: Translation of heterogeneity for Arabic Speakers

Comments on heterogeneity

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

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!