objective

adjective
ob·​jec·​tive | \ əb-ˈjek-tiv How to pronounce objective (audio) , äb- \

Definition of objective

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : expressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations objective art an objective history of the war an objective judgment
b of a test : limited to choices of fixed alternatives and reducing subjective factors to a minimum Each question on the objective test requires the selection of the correct answer from among several choices.
2a : of, relating to, or being an object, phenomenon, or condition in the realm of sensible experience independent of individual thought and perceptible by all observers : having reality independent of the mind objective reality … our reveries … are significantly and repeatedly shaped by our transactions with the objective world.— Marvin Reznikoff — compare subjective sense 3a
b : involving or deriving from sense perception or experience with actual objects, conditions, or phenomena objective awareness objective data
c of a symptom of disease : perceptible to persons other than the affected individual objective arthritis — compare subjective sense 4c
d : relating to or existing as an object of thought without consideration of independent existence used chiefly in medieval philosophy
3 : relating to, characteristic of, or constituting the case of words that follow prepositions or transitive verbs The pronoun her is in the objective case in the sentence "I saw her."

objective

noun
ob·​jec·​tive | \ əb-ˈjek-tiv How to pronounce objective (audio) , äb- \

Definition of objective (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : something toward which effort is directed : an aim, goal, or end of action
b : a strategic position to be attained or a purpose to be achieved by a military operation
2 : a lens or system of lenses that forms an image of an object

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Other Words from objective

Adjective

objectiveness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for objective

Adjective

material, physical, corporeal, phenomenal, sensible, objective mean of or belonging to actuality. material implies formation out of tangible matter; used in contrast with spiritual or ideal it may connote the mundane, crass, or grasping. material values physical applies to what is perceived directly by the senses and may contrast with mental, spiritual, or imaginary. the physical benefits of exercise corporeal implies having the tangible qualities of a body such as shape, size, or resistance to force. artists have portrayed angels as corporeal beings phenomenal applies to what is known or perceived through the senses rather than by intuition or rational deduction. scientists concerned with the phenomenal world sensible stresses the capability of readily or forcibly impressing the senses. the earth's rotation is not sensible to us objective may stress material or independent existence apart from a subject perceiving it. no objective evidence of damage

fair, just, equitable, impartial, unbiased, dispassionate, objective mean free from favor toward either or any side. fair implies a proper balance of conflicting interests. a fair decision just implies an exact following of a standard of what is right and proper. a just settlement of territorial claims equitable implies a less rigorous standard than just and usually suggests equal treatment of all concerned. the equitable distribution of the property impartial stresses an absence of favor or prejudice. an impartial third party unbiased implies even more strongly an absence of all prejudice. your unbiased opinion dispassionate suggests freedom from the influence of strong feeling and often implies cool or even cold judgment. a dispassionate summation of the facts objective stresses a tendency to view events or persons as apart from oneself and one's own interest or feelings. I can't be objective about my own child

Noun

intention, intent, purpose, design, aim, end, object, objective, goal mean what one intends to accomplish or attain. intention implies little more than what one has in mind to do or bring about. announced his intention to marry intent suggests clearer formulation or greater deliberateness. the clear intent of the statute purpose suggests a more settled determination. being successful was her purpose in life design implies a more carefully calculated plan. the order of events came by accident, not design aim adds to these implications of effort directed toward attaining or accomplishing. her aim was to raise film to an art form end stresses the intended effect of action often in distinction or contrast to the action or means as such. willing to use any means to achieve his end object may equal end but more often applies to a more individually determined wish or need. his constant object was the achievement of pleasure objective implies something tangible and immediately attainable. their objective is to seize the oil fields goal suggests something attained only by prolonged effort and hardship. worked years to reach her goals

Examples of objective in a Sentence

Adjective For no matter how objective Server tries to appear in detailing the highs and lows of her 67 years—the three marriages, the numerous affairs, the binges, the nightlong cruising of low-life byways and bordellos, the mainly poor movies she was in—he cannot really hide his essential fondness for her. — Peter Bogdanovich, New York Times Book Review, 23 Apr. 2006 I'm not going to read the history about it while I'm alive because I don't trust short-term history. Most historians wouldn't have voted for me, so I don't think they can write an objective history. — George W. Bush, quoted in Time, 6 Sept. 2004 "I'm not really a Hollywood person," said Mr. [Clint] Eastwood, who lives mostly in Carmel. "Not that I don't like L.A., but I'm just a Northern California guy. And it's very hard to be objective about what you're doing in a town that's all consumed by the entertainment business." — Bernard Weinraub, New York Times, 6 Aug. 1992 We need someone outside the company to give us an objective analysis. an objective assessment based solely upon the results of the experiment Noun The first objective of the low-intensity war was to "bleed" India so that it would cut its losses and quit. — Pervez Hoodbhoy, Prospect, June 2003 The Orange Plan assumed an early Japanese capture of the Philippines, and made relief of the Philippines the main U.S. objective. — David M. Kennedy, Atlantic, March 1999 The President had largely stuck to his publicly stated goals—though the objective of smashing Iraq's military machine hadn't been so clear. — Elizabeth Drew, New Yorker, 6 May 1991 … their primary objective is not the enrollment of new voters but changing the party affiliation of old voters … — Lawrence King, Commonweal, 9 Oct. 1970 The main objective of the class is to teach basic typing skills. She's expanding the business with the objective of improving efficiency. We've set specific objectives for each day.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Any objective observer would conclude that Garoppolo is vastly superior to Darnold. Vincent Frank, Forbes, "It’s NFL Draft Silly Season And The San Francisco 49ers Are Square In The Middle," 6 Apr. 2021 An objective observer might easily draw such conclusions. Jason L. Riley, WSJ, "The Democratic Party’s Dangerous Immigration Experiment," 23 Mar. 2021 Measuring skin tone isn’t completely objective either. Amanda Shendruk, Quartz, "An analysis of 27,000 Instagram images show that fashion’s BLM reckoning was mostly bluster," 16 Mar. 2021 Since people consider matters of morality as objective, absolute and beyond compromise, attaching strong moral significance to every point of disagreement and difference makes tolerance almost impossible. Kumar Yogeeswaran, Scientific American, "The U.S. Needs Tolerance more than Unity," 2 Mar. 2021 My goal in this piece has been important to me for a long time — an objective, thoughtful, and fair assessment of the Trump presidency, complete with some suggestions for the path forward in political life after Trump. David L. Bahnsen, National Review, "A Final Assessment of the Trump Presidency, and the Path Forward," 17 Jan. 2021 Second, they are required by law to provide objective, balanced and comprehensive coverage. Michael Pack, WSJ, "Mainstream Media Partisanship Comes to Voice of America," 15 Jan. 2021 Oladele Ogunseitan, a microbiologist at the University of California at Irvine, demonstrates topophilia by showing that people are attracted to both objective and subjective—even unconscious—criteria. Arthur C. Brooks, The Atlantic, "Is Where You Live Truly Your Home?," 14 Jan. 2021 The objective data also says Alabama may be an entire step above the Buckeyes and everyone else. Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Can Ohio State football recharge emotionally for Alabama in the national championship? Nathan Baird’s observations," 6 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun By quantifying their contributions, the new STAR metric can bring all these actors together around the common objective of preserving the diversity of life on Earth. Julia Jacobo, ABC News, "Sustainable crop, timber production can reduce extinction of species by 40%: Study," 8 Apr. 2021 Ultimately, the objective is to redefine capitalism—to go beyond incremental change, the better to address a trifecta of massive crises: the economic fallout from the pandemic, a widening racial wealth gap and the impact of climate change. Anne Field, Forbes, "Coalition Of Impact Heavy Hitters Urges Coordinated White House Effort To Redefine Capitalism," 8 Apr. 2021 While the long-term goal is to attract more workers to the region, the short-term objective is to find out how different audiences react to different content about Cleveland. Susan Glaser, cleveland, "Here’s how Destination Cleveland plans to promote the NFL Draft (and the city)," 8 Apr. 2021 The main objective while playing Hunt A Killer is to use the props within each box to try to crack a complex murder mystery. Isabelle Kagan, USA TODAY, "10 board games and game night activities that are actually fun," 7 Apr. 2021 Yet, the Taliban have still not broken with al Qaeda, and the principal objective of preventing Afghanistan from serving as a terrorist safe haven would fail if the group was allowed to return. Abraham Mahshie, Washington Examiner, "Pentagon refuses to call Taliban attack on US troops a violation of peace deal," 7 Apr. 2021 The ultimate objective for Jamison's youngest daughter's room was to bring her bold personality to life. Hadley Mendelsohn, House Beautiful, "Lindsey Jamison Made Her Colorado Mountain Home Feel Fresh for Her Busy Family," 7 Apr. 2021 Yet there is still a long way to go to hit the Paris Agreement objective of a largely decarbonized economy by 2050. Connie Foong, The Christian Science Monitor, "Carbon score card: Emissions are down but big tasks ahead for Biden," 5 Apr. 2021 By treating the entire indigenous population as a target, Chen was realizing a years-old objective. Raffi Khatchadourian, The New Yorker, "Surviving the Crackdown in Xinjiang," 5 Apr. 2021

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

Adjective

1647, in the meaning defined at sense 2d

Noun

1835, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for objective

Adjective

borrowed from Medieval Latin objectīvus "considered in relation to its purpose, relating to an object of thought," from objectum "something presented to the mind, goal, aim" + Latin -īvus -ive — more at object entry 1

Noun

in sense 1 probably short for objective point "goal of a military operation"; in sense 2 noun derivative of objective, adjective, "nearest the object (of the parts of a lens in a telescope, microscope, etc.)," probably borrowed from French (in verre objectif "lens nearest the object") — more at objective entry 1

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Time Traveler for objective

Time Traveler

The first known use of objective was in 1647

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Statistics for objective

Last Updated

11 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Objective.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/objective. Accessed 19 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for objective

objective

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of objective

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: based on facts rather than feelings or opinions : not influenced by feelings
philosophy : existing outside of the mind : existing in the real world
grammar : relating to nouns, noun phrases, or pronouns that are the objects of verbs or prepositions

objective

noun

English Language Learners Definition of objective (Entry 2 of 2)

: something you are trying to do or achieve : a goal or purpose

objective

adjective
ob·​jec·​tive | \ əb-ˈjek-tiv How to pronounce objective (audio) \

Kids Definition of objective

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : dealing with facts without allowing personal feelings to confuse them an objective report
2 : being or belonging to the case of a noun or pronoun that is an object of a transitive verb or a preposition
3 : being outside of the mind and independent of it

Other Words from objective

objectively adverb

objective

noun

Kids Definition of objective (Entry 2 of 2)

: purpose, goal Before you begin the experiment, state your objective.

objective

adjective
ob·​jec·​tive | \ əb-ˈjek-tiv, äb- How to pronounce objective (audio) \

Medical Definition of objective

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or being an object, phenomenon, or condition in the realm of sensible experience independent of individual thought and perceptible by all observers objective reality
2 : perceptible to persons other than the affected individual an objective symptom of disease — compare subjective sense 2b

Other Words from objective

objectively adverb

objective

noun

Medical Definition of objective (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a lens or system of lenses that forms an image of an object
2 : something toward which effort is directed

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Comments on objective

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