nav·​i·​ga·​tion | \ ˌna-və-ˈgā-shən How to pronounce navigation (audio) \

Definition of navigation

1 : the act or practice of navigating
2 : the science of getting ships, aircraft, or spacecraft from place to place especially : the method of determining position, course, and distance traveled
3 : ship traffic or commerce

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Other Words from navigation

navigational \ ˌna-​və-​ˈgā-​shnəl How to pronounce navigational (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
navigationally adverb

Examples of navigation in a Sentence

If you're going to be a good sailor you need to master navigation. I don't mind driving if you're willing to do the navigation. Our new car has an onboard navigation system. Navigation becomes more difficult further upriver. There are back and forward buttons for easier browser navigation.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The dredging is intended to keep harbors and navigation routes open. Ana Radelat,, "Connecticut, New York in court battle over dumping in Long Island Sound," 11 June 2019 The Thursday morning accident occurred near the New York academy as the cadets were being taken to land navigation training. USA TODAY, "Women's World Cup, NBA Finals Game 4, 'Dark Phoenix': 5 things to know Friday," 7 June 2019 The cadets, seniors at the academy, were being transported to a routine land navigation training exercise, Lt. CBS News, "West Point cadet killed in accident identified as 22-year-old Christopher Morgan," 7 June 2019 Anchor institutions should bring together services that are important to the community under one roof to make navigation simpler. Leila Atassi,, "MetroHealth’s Buckeye Health Center to feature wraparound services, social support for patients on poverty’s edge," 7 June 2019 Google Maps even adopted the ability to customize your navigation icon. Jon Porter, The Verge, "Google Maps can now tell you your speed in real time," 6 June 2019 Two soldiers were driving a group of cadets to a land navigation training site when the tactical vehicle overturned on Route 293, a highway near the academy, said West Point superintendent Lt. Abigail Abrams, Time, "West Point Cadet Killed, 21 Others Injured After Tactical Vehicle Crash During Training," 6 June 2019 The planes encountered cloud banks and ground fog, making navigation difficult. David Hambling, Popular Mechanics, "The Return of 'That’s All, Brother': The Plane That Led the D-Day Invasion," 4 June 2019 The Global Positioning System, the ubiquitous satellite navigation technology that was built for the U.S. military, has found its way into all our pockets. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Uber is dumping its controversy-plagued self-driving truck business," 31 July 2018

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

1547, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for navigation

Last Updated

15 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for navigation

The first known use of navigation was in 1547

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More Definitions for navigation



English Language Learners Definition of navigation

: the act, activity, or process of finding the way to get to a place when you are traveling in a ship, airplane, car, etc.
: the act of moving in a boat or ship over an area of water
computers : the act of going to different places on the Internet or on a particular Web site in order to find what you want


nav·​i·​ga·​tion | \ ˌna-və-ˈgā-shən How to pronounce navigation (audio) \

Kids Definition of navigation

1 : the act or practice of steering, directing the course of, or finding a way through
2 : the science of figuring out the position and course of a ship or aircraft

Other Words from navigation

navigational \ -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on navigation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with navigation

Spanish Central: Translation of navigation

Nglish: Translation of navigation for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of navigation for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about navigation

Comments on navigation

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


to take the place or position of

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