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 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 After a ten-day break, the researchers put the overstimulated mice through their paces in a series of tests like maze navigation and object recognition and compared their results to mice that hadn’t been exposed to the cartoons and light. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "What do we actually know about the risks of screen time and digital media?," 17 Oct. 2018 Tra said the exercises violated Vietnam's sovereignty and posed a threat to navigation and aviation security in the region, Vietnam's official news agency reported. Christopher Bodeen, Fox News, "Recent developments surrounding the South China Sea," 27 Aug. 2018 Just hours after Google pushed out the new update to Pixel phones two weeks ago, Essential followed suit with its own stable release, bringing gesture navigation, Wi-Fi RTT, and of course, camera cutout support to its year-old handset. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "You can try out a fresh slice of Android 9 Pie with more than 50% off the Essential Phone," 20 Aug. 2018 Waze is integrating seven more audio streaming services into its navigation app. Jon Porter, The Verge, "Waze adds Pandora, TuneIn, and five other streaming services into app," 30 Oct. 2018 The native navigation app will constantly tell you where the nearest hydrogen station is, as well as keep tabs on your range. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "The 2019 Hyundai Nexo is an upmarket hydrogen fuel-cell SUV," 26 Oct. 2018 About 84 percent of Americans, for example, use navigation apps like Google Maps, Waze and Apple Maps, the study found. Niraj Chokshi, New York Times, "Most Americans See Artificial Intelligence as a Threat to Jobs (Just Not Theirs)," 6 Mar. 2018 AIs also could perform tasks for pilots in single-seat jets that were traditionally reserved for co-pilots, such as radar operation and target identification, navigation, and increased situational awareness. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force's New AI Is Like R2-D2 for Fighter Jets," 19 Mar. 2019

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

18 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

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).


a strong desire or propensity

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