meth·​od·​ol·​o·​gy | \ˌme-thə-ˈdä-lə-jē \
plural methodologies

Definition of methodology 

1 : a body of methods, rules, and postulates employed by a discipline : a particular procedure or set of procedures demonstrating library research methodology the issue is massive revision of teaching methodology— Bob Samples

2 : the analysis of the principles or procedures of inquiry in a particular field

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Methodology and Science

The methodology employed in an experiment is essential to its success, and bad methodology has spoiled thousands of research projects. So whenever a piece of research is published in a scientific or medical journal, the researchers always carefully describe their methodology; otherwise, other scientists couldn't possibly judge the quality of what they've done.

Examples of methodology in a Sentence

He blamed the failure of their research on poor methodology. for solving crossword puzzles my usual methodology is to begin by filling in all of the answers I'm reasonably sure of

Recent Examples on the Web

Using this methodology, the researchers found that 66 percent of all tweets linking to the most popular websites during that time period were automated. Issie Lapowsky, WIRED, "Most Links to Popular Sites on Twitter Come From Bots," 9 Apr. 2018 Design thinking is a problem-solving methodology used by designers and business consultants to resolve complex issues. Debbie Yong, Fortune, "Not Every Company Can Have a Steve Jobs. But Here's What They Can Do In The Meantime," 6 Mar. 2018 This was the official methodology that Australian officials presented to the public. Jeff Wise, Popular Mechanics, "Where Did the Search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Go So Wrong?," 22 July 2016 The methodology and data for this story are available online. Charles Piller, Science | AAAS, "Hidden conflicts? Pharma payments to FDA advisers after drug approvals spark ethical concerns," 5 July 2018 IntelliCare, developed at Northwestern University's Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies, is based on a similar methodology aimed at depression and anxiety and includes a suite of programs. Amy Ellis Nutt, Washington Post, "To Your Health newsletter," 2 July 2018 While several other naturalists of the early 19th century also pursued a numerical approach to taxonomy, Bronn took it further than anyone else, and championed it as a new methodology for paleontology. David Sepkoski, The Atlantic, "19th-Century Paleontology Was at the Forefront of Big Data," 14 Feb. 2018 Other reports that employ different methodologies find a substantially larger amount of work among program recipients. New York Times, "Declaring War on Poverty ‘Largely Over,’ White House Urges Work Requirements for Aid," 12 July 2018 For more about the study, its methodology and limitations, visit Fiza Pirani, ajc, "5 things moms can do to reduce child obesity risk, according to a new study," 11 July 2018

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

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First Known Use of methodology

1800, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for methodology

New Latin methodologia, from Latin methodus + -logia -logy

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Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for methodology

The first known use of methodology was in 1800

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English Language Learners Definition of methodology

: a set of methods, rules, or ideas that are important in a science or art : a particular procedure or set of procedures

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