pro·​fes·​sion·​al·​ism | \ prə-ˈfesh-nə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce professionalism (audio) , -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 Harris and coach Marc Skinner use the same word to describe Wilson — professionalism. Julia Poe,, "Orlando Pride goalkeeper Brittany Wilson steps into spotlight for first full season," 18 Mar. 2021 The mask of professionalism slips and then gets tossed as dead weight. Globe Staff,, "In ‘Quo Vadis, Aida?,’ a final horror in a century filled with horror," 17 Mar. 2021 Growing and developing professionally. Showing professionalism. Alison Steinbach, The Arizona Republic, "Gilbert Public Schools used 'scoring rubric' to decide which teachers to lay off, draws public outrage," 1 Dec. 2020 Equity’s rules for producing theaters also give local companies a road map to greater professionalism. Matthew J. Palm,, "Orlando Shakes’ ‘Dream’ a big step back for union actors," 12 Apr. 2021 Abandon objectivity, professionalism, pride and just. . . Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, "Doc's TML: Well-manicured truths elevate reverence for The Masters tournament," 6 Apr. 2021 Teammates and coaches seem to love him, and his professionalism, vibe and work ethic have blended seamlessly to the team’s culture. oregonlive, "Blazers’ Norman Powell says goodbye to Toronto, Damian Lillard’s ‘unguardable move,’ Jazz team plane makes emergency landing, LaMarcus Aldridge joins Nets: NBA news and notes," 31 Mar. 2021 The code of ethics, the professionalism, the financial questions — all of that has to be examined. Josh Rottenberg, Los Angeles Times, "As HFPA struggles to respond to mounting PR crisis, Hollywood keeps the pressure on," 19 Mar. 2021 Demonstrate professionalism as well as comfort in your attire. Anchorage Daily News, "My coworkers’ home lives are constantly derailing our staff Zoom meetings," 23 Feb. 2021

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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The first known use of professionalism was in 1856

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Statistics for professionalism

Last Updated

1 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Professionalism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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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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