pro·​fes·​sion·​al | \ prə-ˈfesh-nəl How to pronounce professional (audio) , -ˈfe-shə-nᵊl \

Definition of professional

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or characteristic of a profession
b : engaged in one of the learned professions
c(1) : characterized by or conforming to the technical or ethical standards of a profession
(2) : exhibiting a courteous, conscientious, and generally businesslike manner in the workplace
2a : participating for gain or livelihood in an activity or field of endeavor often engaged in by amateurs a professional golfer
b : having a particular profession as a permanent career a professional soldier
c : engaged in by persons receiving financial return professional football
3 : following a line of conduct as though it were a profession a professional patriot



Definition of professional (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that is professional especially : one that engages in a pursuit or activity professionally

Other Words from professional


professionally adverb

Examples of professional in a Sentence

Adjective Do you have any professional experience? You should seek professional advice. a golfer who recently turned professional I was impressed by the calm and professional way she handled the crisis. The presentation was very professional. Noun The bathtub was installed by a professional. The tournament is open to both amateurs and professionals. a golfer who recently became a professional She handled the situation like a professional. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective One hangover from the Soviet era is a proclivity to rat out personal or professional adversaries, so some tips could come from within the Russian military and intelligence offices. Jillian Kay Melchior, WSJ, 18 Sep. 2022 Look to do brand collaborations that align with your personal and professional values. Rolling Stone Culture Council, Rolling Stone, 16 Sep. 2022 Unfortunately, most cleaning methods will damage lacquered brass, so your best option is to take the piece to a professional. Jessica Bennett, Better Homes & Gardens, 14 Sep. 2022 Between 2008 and 2021, Spears’ father served as her conservator, putting him in charge of her finances, and decisions regarding her personal and professional life. Prarthana Prakash, Fortune, 13 Sep. 2022 The consultant conducted a check of Gonzalez’s personal and professional background. John Hilliard,, 11 Sep. 2022 They've been married since 2017 and are currently working on their fourth film together Dave Franco and Alison Brie have successfully married both their personal and professional lives. Jessica Booth, Peoplemag, 9 Sep. 2022 Bored of their personal and professional lives, three single women—Jane, Alex, and Sukie respectively—accidentally summon their ideal man: a devilishly handsome stranger named Daryl. Hanna Lustig, Glamour, 9 Sep. 2022 Biographers point to the queen's devotion to duty as her most important personal and professional characteristic, raising questions about whether the monarchy can survive long without her. Maria Puente And Jeff Stinson, USA TODAY, 8 Sep. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Hackl is largely credited with being the first professional to be bestowed the title of Chief Metaverse Officer. Pauleanna Reid, Forbes, 18 Aug. 2022 Because of this, experts recommend collaborating with a licensed professional before selecting your new furnace. Mia Taylor, Better Homes & Gardens, 31 Jan. 2022 That said, though, here are some of the most common signs and causes that the stabbing pain in your stomach might require attention from a medical professional. Elizabeth Berry, Woman's Day, 6 Sep. 2022 Women and families would be able to place a baby in such a box so that a medical professional can immediately take custody and care of the baby. Taylor Pettaway, San Antonio Express-News, 2 Sep. 2022 Buyers who might be worried about injuries should consider contacting a medical professional. Chris Smith, BGR, 2 Sep. 2022 The criminal investigation began in November 2021, when a Park City student told a medical professional that his principal had touched him inappropriately in 2019. Courtney Tanner, The Salt Lake Tribune, 18 Aug. 2022 The rule requiring a certified trainer or licensed medical professional at all football games, which was passed previously but delayed during the pandemic, will go into effect this fall. Brendan Kurie,, 17 Aug. 2022 While these centers masquerade as medical clinics, under half report having a licensed medical professional on staff and most don’t offer actual medical services. Paige Mcglauflin, Fortune, 2 Aug. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of professional


1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1811, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for professional

Time Traveler

The first known use of professional was in 1606

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Dictionary Entries Near professional



professional corporation

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Statistics for professional

Last Updated

20 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Professional.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for professional


pro·​fes·​sion·​al | \ prə-ˈfe-shə-nᵊl How to pronounce professional (audio) \

Kids Definition of professional

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : relating to an occupation : of or as an expert professional advice
2 : taking part in an activity (as a sport) in order to make money
3 : participated in by people who are paid to compete professional sports
4 : having or showing a quality appropriate in a profession He did a very professional job.

Other Words from professional

professionally adverb



Kids Definition of professional (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a person who does a job that requires special education or skill
2 : a person who is paid to participate in a sport or activity


pro·​fes·​sion·​al | \ prə-ˈfesh-nəl, -ən-ᵊl How to pronounce professional (audio) \

Medical Definition of professional

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or characteristic of a profession
2 : engaged in one of the learned professions
3 : characterized by or conforming to the technical or ethical standards of a profession

Other Words from professional

professionally \ -​ē How to pronounce professional (audio) \ adverb



Medical Definition of professional (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who is professional especially : a person who engages in a pursuit or activity professionally


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