in·​struc·​tive | \ in-ˈstrək-tiv How to pronounce instructive (audio) \

Definition of instructive

: carrying a lesson : enlightening

Other Words from instructive

instructively adverb
instructiveness noun

Examples of instructive in a Sentence

an interesting and instructive lesson an instructive demonstration of the proper way to pack a suitcase so your clothes don't arrive in a mess
Recent Examples on the Web Still, history can be instructive, and Russia seems plenty interested in rebuilding the Soviet-era metropole. Philip Elliott, Time, 20 Apr. 2022 Yet the contrasts are instructive about the state of higher education. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 17 Dec. 2021 But there’s nothing instructive about overdraft fees. Washington Post, 2 Dec. 2021 The Hunter Biden laptop saga sure is instructive about something. New York Times, 28 Nov. 2021 Turn to your marketing department to help keep buyers informed as to what these specific products offer through instructive resources and content marketing. Todd Mcfliker, Rolling Stone, 19 Apr. 2022 An instructive view of some of the impact of these changes was described to me by Joe Ens, CEO of a cookie brand named HighKey. Richard Kestenbaum, Forbes, 13 Apr. 2022 The subject of dreams provides an instructive case. Michael W. Clune, Harper’s Magazine , 16 Mar. 2022 It’s usually instructive for cultural-historical reasons to consider them, even those that weren’t very good, which is to say quite a lot of them. Kyle Smith, National Review, 11 Mar. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of instructive

1611, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About instructive

Time Traveler for instructive

Time Traveler

The first known use of instructive was in 1611

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near instructive

instruction card



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for instructive

Last Updated

5 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Instructive.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for instructive


in·​struc·​tive | \ in-ˈstrək-tiv How to pronounce instructive (audio) \

Kids Definition of instructive

: helping to give knowledge or information an instructive book

More from Merriam-Webster on instructive

Nglish: Translation of instructive for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of instructive for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Which Word Does Not Belong?

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!