pro·​fes·​sion·​al·​ism | \prə-ˈfesh-nə-ˌli-zəm, -ˈfe-shə-nə-ˌli-\

Definition of professionalism 

1 : the conduct, aims, or qualities that characterize or mark a profession or a professional person

2 : the following of a profession (such as athletics) for gain or livelihood

Examples of professionalism in a Sentence

For writers such as Alexander Pope and Samuel Johnson, struggling in the transition from the age of patronage to that of Grub Street professionalism, Shakespeare offered not only a body of poetic invention but also an inspirational career trajectory. — Jonathan Bate, Harper's, April 2007 In Washington, careerism has so trumped professionalism among political journalists as to render Alterman's ethical concerns almost quaint. — Gene Lyons, Harper's, October 2003 It is difficult not to contrast the professionalism of modestly paid firefighters and police doing their duty on September 11 with the secretive … behavior of six- and seven-figure accountants, lawyers, CEOs, bankers, and financial analysts who failed at their duty with Enron. — Bruce Nussbaum, Business Week, 28 Jan. 2002 A high level of professionalism is expected when working with clients. She is highly respected for her professionalism.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Currently, he is restrained only by the lingering professionalism of public servants and a few thin threads of institutional inertia. David Roberts, Vox, "The caravan “invasion” and America’s epistemic crisis," 2 Nov. 2018 As a veteran in his 13th season, Kinsler’s professionalism has been unrelenting. Jeff Miller,, "As he struggles at the plate, Angels' Ian Kinsler faces uncertain future," 1 July 2018 The professionalism that surrounds their cities is like no other. miamiherald, "CEOs cite transportation, housing, visibility as factors to make South Florida a true tech hub | Miami Herald," 26 Apr. 2018 One of the reasons our allies, partners and friends want to operate with the United States is the professionalism and readiness of our military. James Stavridis, Time, "I Was a Navy Admiral. Here's Why Ending 'War Games' With South Korea Would Be a Grave Mistake," 12 June 2018 There was an undeniable professionalism at the E.Y.B.L. session, with the games running on time and all coaches wearing slacks, polo shirts and no hats. Marc Tracy, New York Times, "Investigation? N.C.A.A. Scrutiny? Business as Usual in Grassroots Hoops," 21 May 2018 Rettenmund said what stands out to him today about the ‘98 squad was the professionalism of the players. Tom Krasovic,, "1998 Padres take pride in helping make downtown ballpark a reality," 10 May 2018 The thing is, there are ways to write the story that meet the standards of both professionalism and humanity, but no one nails it on the first try. Bob Ford,, "Annapolis newspaper shooting hits home for this writer, because all of us in journalism have been there | Bob Ford," 29 June 2018 When in the spotlight, poise, professionalism and a positive demeanor were his calling cards. Mike Jones, USA TODAY, "Kirk Cousins finally feeling the love in Minnesota but knows he must take loaded Vikings to next level," 12 June 2018

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

1856, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for professionalism

Last Updated

13 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for professionalism

The first known use of professionalism was in 1856

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English Language Learners Definition of professionalism

: the skill, good judgment, and polite behavior that is expected from a person who is trained to do a job well

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Comments on professionalism

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


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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