proficient was our Word of the Day on 05/22/2012. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of proficient in a Sentence
- With this system, a large pool of teachers are asked to identify students they believe are proficient in a given subject; those students are then tested, and their grades stand as the proficiency range. —Malcolm Gladwell, New Yorker, 15 Sept. 2003
- Dr. Pascual-Leone recruited 15 proficient Braille readers and wired them up so he could measure their somatosensory cortex—the part of the brain that registers and processes the sense of touch. —Sharon Begley, Wall Street Journal, 11 Oct. 2002
- Become proficient at lag putting and you may make a few. —Dave Pelz, Golf Magazine, July 1996
He has become very proficient at computer programming.
She is proficient in two foreign languages.
Recent Examples of proficient from the Web
To be proficient with a gun requires frequent practice, further reinforcing the right to private ownership.
Like everything else, some were more proficient at it than others.
In 2016-17, less than half of all JCPS students were proficient in math and reading, according to standardized test results.
There are probably a lot of teachers that recreationally shoot on the weekends that are very proficient with firearms.
Elly was a proficient sewing craftswoman during her adult life.
Hield is proficient at 3-point shooting, but not as much at dribbling and passing – the other skills featured in the competition.
As per state test scores, 66 percent of students are at least proficient in math and 72 percent in reading.
New data shows that less than 11 percent of Flint, Mich., children are proficient in reading.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'proficient.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Comparing efficient, effective, and proficient
These three words cover some overlapping territory.
Efficient most often describes what is capable of producing desired results without wasting materials, time, or energy. While the word can be applied to both people and things, it is far more commonly applied to things, such as machines, systems, processes, and organizations. The focus of the word is on how little is wasted or lost while the desired results are produced.
Effective typically describes things—such as policies, treatments, arguments, and techniques—that do what they are intended to do. People can also be described as effective when they accomplish what they set out to accomplish, but the word is far more often applied to things.
Proficient typically describes people, and it often is followed by the preposition at. If you are proficient at something, you are very good at it. You are, in fact, so good at doing it that you are unusually efficient when you do it. One can also be proficient in something, such as a language.
accomplished, ace, adept, complete, consummate, crack, crackerjack, educated, experienced, expert, good, great, master, masterful, masterly, practiced (also practised), skilled, skillful, versed, veteran, virtuoso;
Synonym Discussion of proficient
- proficient in translating foreign languages
- adept at doing long division
- a skilled surgeon
- skillful drivers
- expert in the evaluation of wines
PROFICIENT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of proficient for English Language Learners
: good at doing something
PROFICIENT Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
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