ma·​tric·​u·​late | \ mə-ˈtri-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce matriculate (audio) \
matriculated; matriculating

Definition of matriculate

transitive verb

: to enroll as a member of a body and especially of a college or university

intransitive verb

: to be enrolled at a college or university She matriculated at the state university.

Other Words from matriculate

matriculant \ mə-​ˈtri-​kyə-​lənt How to pronounce matriculate (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for matriculate



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Anybody who has had basic Latin knows that alma mater, a fancy term for the school you attended, comes from a phrase that means "fostering mother." If mater is mother, then matriculate probably has something to do with a school nurturing you just like good old mom, right? Not exactly. If you go back far enough, matriculate is distantly related to the Latin mater, but its maternal associations were lost long ago—even in terms of Latin history. It is more closely related to Late Latin matricula, which means "public roll or register." Matricula has more to do with being enrolled than being mothered, but it is the diminutive form of the Latin matrix, which in Late Latin was used in the sense of "list" or "register" and earlier referred to female animals kept for the purposes of breeding.

Examples of matriculate in a Sentence

the college matriculated 1000 students for the fall semester
Recent Examples on the Web He was set to matriculate at Harvard in the fall of that year, according to Miranda. Sudiksha Kochi, USA TODAY, 8 Feb. 2022 Younger Americans were expecting to matriculate into a strong economy now made weaker by COVID-19. Philip Elliott, Time, 25 Jan. 2022 Some international schools, including St. George’s, matriculate a cohort each January. Kristen Moon, Forbes, 19 Jan. 2022 Are students able to, for example, matriculate into third-level education coming from a homeschool? Mike Mcshane, Forbes, 31 Aug. 2021 Despite some Florida weather cutting into their playing time, several of the Orioles’ recent draftees have started to matriculate into Florida Complex League action. Nathan Ruiz,, 9 Aug. 2021 Cristo Rey President Preston Kendall said many graduates matriculate to schools like Loyola University in Chicago. Steve Sadin,, 21 May 2021 The ceiling is deliberate: Amazon wants employees either to matriculate into management or leave the company for opportunities elsewhere. al, 11 Apr. 2021 The unspoken assumption that, of course, families would step up and pay — parents, really, in the case of most students hoping to matriculate straight from high school. Ron Lieber, New York Times, 30 Dec. 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of matriculate

1577, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for matriculate

Medieval Latin matriculatus, past participle of matriculare, from Late Latin matricula public roll, diminutive of matric-, matrix list, from Latin, breeding female

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The first known use of matriculate was in 1577

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Cite this Entry

“Matriculate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on matriculate

Nglish: Translation of matriculate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of matriculate for Arabic Speakers


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