in·​sti·​tute | \ ˈin(t)-stə-ˌtüt How to pronounce institute (audio) , -ˌtyüt \

Definition of institute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that is instituted: such as
a : an organization for the promotion of a cause : association a research institute an institute for the blind
b : an educational institution and especially one devoted to technical fields
c : a usually brief intensive course of instruction on selected topics relating to a particular field an urban studies institute
d(1) : an elementary principle recognized as authoritative
(2) institutes plural : a collection of such principles and precepts especially : a legal compendium


instituted; instituting

Definition of institute (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to originate and get established : organize
b : to set going : inaugurate instituting an investigation
2 : to establish in a position or office

Other Words from institute


instituter or institutor \ ˈin(t)-​stə-​ˌtü-​tər How to pronounce institute (audio) , -​ˌtyü-​ \ noun

Examples of institute in a Sentence

Noun They founded an institute for research into the causes of mental illness. the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Verb By instituting these programs, we hope to improve our children's education. They have instituted new policies to increase public safety.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Guests at the gala, which raises millions for the self-funding institute and has become a major fashion and pop culture spectacle, will be among the first see the displays. Jocelyn Novek, USA TODAY, 2 May 2022 The institute has previously said that any release of oil from the strategic reserve should be paired with policy measures that encourage more U.S. energy production. David Koenig And Cathy Bussewitz, Chron, 31 Mar. 2022 Russian forces appear to be digging in around Kyiv and elsewhere with the goal of holding onto their gains, the institute said. Forbes Staff Reports, Forbes, 20 Mar. 2022 Joshua Wyner, executive director of the institute’s college excellence program, said selective schools ought to do more. Washington Post, 5 May 2022 That bar may now be gone, but the hotel maintains a relationship with the institute, and guests can go through it to purchase bottles of their favorite wines during their stay. Ann Abel, Forbes, 5 May 2022 That’s the largest amount recorded for those months since the institute began monitoring deforestation rates in 2016. Karol Suarez, CNN, 4 May 2022 The institute also has received a lot of praise for its insights about COVID-19. San Diego Union-Tribune, 4 May 2022 The research institute’s survey was a microscopic version of the annual count in which thousands of volunteers search street by street over vast stretches of Los Angeles County for signs of homelessness. Benjamin Oreskes, Los Angeles Times, 4 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The last president even attempted to institute a historicist neoclassical style for new government buildings, as part of a quixotic and misguided attack on modernism in public architecture. Philip Kennicott, Washington Post, 17 May 2022 Board members voted to institute the policy change, effective immediately. Beth Mlady, cleveland, 29 Oct. 2021 The three states have declined to institute an OSHA rule from June, which would require coronavirus safety standards at medical facilities., 20 Oct. 2021 Spotify will institute a stock buyback program of up to 10 million of the company’s shares, to the tune of up to $1 billion, beginning in the third quarter of this year, the company announced today (Aug. 20). Dan Rys, Billboard, 20 Aug. 2021 Finnair is the latest carrier to institute such a ban. Karen Pallarito,, 16 Sep. 2021 To institute a blanket ban on mask mandates disregards the needs of individual school districts, Tucker said. Alia Wong, USA TODAY, 29 Aug. 2021 Those concerns were exacerbated by allegations that Airbnb rentals were being used for parties that ran afoul of public health guidance during the pandemic, leading the company to institute a ban on gatherings of more than 16 people at its rentals. Washington Post, 15 June 2021 Indiana Dunes National Park is one that will institute an entry fee for the first time this year, beginning March 31. Forrest Brown, CNN, 22 Mar. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of institute


1546, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for institute


Middle English, from Latin institutus, past participle of instituere, from in- + statuere to set up — more at statute

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Time Traveler for institute

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The first known use of institute was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

21 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Institute.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for institute


in·​sti·​tute | \ ˈin-stə-ˌtüt How to pronounce institute (audio) , -ˌtyüt \
instituted; instituting

Kids Definition of institute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to begin or establish The library instituted new rules.
2 : to give a start to Police instituted an investigation.



Kids Definition of institute (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an organization for the promotion of a cause an institute for scientific research
2 : a place for study usually in a special field an art institute


transitive verb
instituted; instituting

Legal Definition of institute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to establish in a particular position or office specifically, in the civil law of Louisiana : to appoint as heir — see also instituted heir at heir
2 : to get started : bring institute a lawsuit



Legal Definition of institute (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an elementary principle recognized as authoritative
2 plural : a collection of principles especially : a legal compendium

More from Merriam-Webster on institute

Nglish: Translation of institute for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of institute for Arabic Speakers


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