pro·​pae·​deu·​tic | \ ˌprō-pi-ˈdü-tik How to pronounce propaedeutic (audio) , -ˈdyü- \

Definition of propaedeutic

: preparatory study or instruction

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Other Words from propaedeutic

propaedeutic adjective

Did You Know?

You don't have to be a walking encyclopedia to use it, but "propaedeutic" does tend to occur mostly in scholarly discussions of learning and education. "I take thinking not to be a source of any moral code or set of ethical principles but a propaedeutic, a preparation for discernment and indeterminate judgment," wrote Dr. Elizabeth Minnich, for example, in Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning. "Propaedeutic" might be a "hard" word, but one easy thing to remember about it is that it is closely related to "encyclopedia." "Encyclopedia" is from Greek paideia, meaning "education," plus enkyklios, meaning "general." "Propaedeutic" is from Greek paideuein, meaning "to teach," plus "pro-," which means "before." "Paideia" and "paideuein" both spring from the root "paid-," which means "child."

First Known Use of propaedeutic

1798, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for propaedeutic

Greek propaideuein to teach beforehand, from pro- before + paideuein to teach, from paid-, pais child — more at pro-, few

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Time Traveler for propaedeutic

Time Traveler

The first known use of propaedeutic was in 1798

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Cite this Entry

“Propaedeutic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jul. 2020.

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