learn·ing | \ˈlər-niŋ \

Definition of learning 

1 : the act or experience of one that learns a computer program that makes learning fun

2 : knowledge or skill acquired by instruction or study people of good education and considerable learning

3 : modification of a behavioral tendency by experience (such as exposure to conditioning)

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for learning

knowledge, learning, erudition, scholarship mean what is or can be known by an individual or by humankind. knowledge applies to facts or ideas acquired by study, investigation, observation, or experience. rich in the knowledge of human nature learning applies to knowledge acquired especially through formal, often advanced, schooling. a book that demonstrates vast learning erudition strongly implies the acquiring of profound, recondite, or bookish learning. an erudition unusual even in a scholar scholarship implies the possession of learning characteristic of the advanced scholar in a specialized field of study or investigation. a work of first-rate literary scholarship

Examples of learning in a Sentence

a computer program that makes learning fun different methods of foreign language learning The first year of college was a learning experience. They were people of good education and considerable learning.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Others discussed the potential to decode emoji with machine learning, and the difficulties in teaching computers to recognize the multiple meanings of emoji in natural-language processing. Arielle Pardes, WIRED, "Academics Gathered to Share Emoji Research, and It Was 🔥," 27 June 2018 In fact, thanks to what’s called machine learning, search engines and other software can become more accurate — and even those who write the code for them may not be able to explain why. Edward Tenner, Time, "Search Engines May Seem All-Knowing, But They’re Not. Here’s How to Get More Trustworthy Results," 26 June 2018 Despite advances in machine learning, robots haven’t replaced humans as window washers yet. Wendy Lee, SFChronicle.com, "Are robots coming for window-cleaning jobs?," 18 June 2018 Those are people who have skills in cybersecurity, machine learning — a subset of artificial intelligence engineering — and anything to do with automated and electric vehicle systems such as battery technology, fuel cell systems and hydrogen. Jamie L. Lareau, Detroit Free Press, "In auto talent war, GM hires 9,000, spends $1 billion on offices," 14 June 2018 What helped us was acknowledging the validity and being a platform for the German federation to work on machine learning. Brian Straus, SI.com, "Germany's World Cup Title Defense Aided By San Jose Earthquakes, Silicon Valley," 12 June 2018 Utilizing ever-evolving forms of machine-learning, AI programs can compare new data with existing historical information to almost instantly identify systems in need of attention. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "F-35 to 2070? Air Force says 'software' will decide who wins future wars," 7 June 2018 Those measurements were based on a machine-learning model that the researchers had previously built to understand what RNA molecules look like in a healthy pregnancy. Jacqueline Howard, CNN, "Blood tests to predict preterm birth risk raise excitement -- and questions," 7 June 2018 Machine learning is a term for technology that enables computers to improve their performance at specific functions on their own, without people stepping in to modify their programming. Mike Rogoway, OregonLive.com, "Apple quietly opens Oregon engineering lab, poaches from Intel," 30 May 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about learning

Statistics for learning

Last Updated

14 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for learning

The first known use of learning was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for learning



English Language Learners Definition of learning

: the activity or process of gaining knowledge or skill by studying, practicing, being taught, or experiencing something : the activity of someone who learns

: knowledge or skill gained from learning


learn·ing | \ˈlər-niŋ\

Kids Definition of learning

1 : the act of a person who gains knowledge or skill Travel is a learning experience.

2 : knowledge or skill gained from teaching or study They're people of great learning.



Medical Definition of learning 

: the process of acquiring a modification in a behavioral tendency by experience (as exposure to conditioning) in contrast to modifications occurring because of development or a temporary physiological condition (as fatigue) of the organism also : the modified behavioral tendency itself

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on learning

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


required by fashion, etiquette, or custom

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Add Diction

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!