rank·​ing | \ ˈraŋ-kiŋ How to pronounce ranking (audio) \

Definition of ranking

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having a high position: such as
a : of the highest rank the ranking officer
b : being next to the chairman in seniority ranking committee member


plural rankings

Definition of ranking (Entry 2 of 2)

: position, order, or standing within a group : rank The figures, compiled from federal surveys and a tourism research concern, earned New York City a second-place ranking nationwide as a destination for United States travelers, pushing Las Vegas down to the No. 3 spot.— Eric Lipton … if a site is linked to by sites of high quality and popularity, those links can raise the ranking of the first site.— Elizabeth Stone Playing primarily in regional events, she earned a ranking of No. 151, high enough to make the qualifying field at Roland Garros.— L. Jon Wertheim … he had the lowest interception rate and the highest ranking of any NFL quarterback …— Paul Zimmerman

Examples of ranking in a Sentence


Who is the ranking officer here? the country's ranking law school

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Rady’s rankings in this year’s U.S. News report were as follows, with last year’s ranking listed second. Paul Sisson, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Rady again 10-for-10 in U.S. News report, but top rankings slip a bit," 26 June 2018 Mawdo Sallah was a grad transfer who averaged 7.7 minutes and 1.8 points and was the team's ranking senior. Sam Mellinger, kansascity, "Mellinger Minutes: Ranking KU's tournament losses under Self, plus Royals & Chiefs | The Kansas City Star," 3 Apr. 2018 As the majority whip, Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana is the third-highest ranking Republican in the House and expected to be McCarthy’s top challenger from the leadership ranks. NBC News, "The race is on to replace Paul Ryan as GOP House leader," 11 Apr. 2018 McMorris Rodgers ranks fourth in House leadership and is the highest ranking GOP woman in the chamber. Nicholas K. Geranios, The Seattle Times, "VP Pence reiterates support for Kavanaugh, touts Trump policies in Spokane rally for McMorris Rodgers," 8 Oct. 2018 Meantime, the House Intelligence Committee's ranking Democrat, Adam Schiff, called the president's move, quote, an abuse of power, not about transparency -- Sean. Fox News, "Graham: Democrats are trying to destroy Kavanaugh's life," 17 Sep. 2018 Five attorneys are vying to replace the deputy chief state’s attorney for operations — one of the highest ranking prosecutors in the state. Nicholas Rondinone, courant.com, "Five Vie For Deputy Chief State's Attorney Job," 12 July 2018 The lowest ranking states are South Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas and Wyoming. Washington Post, "Cyndi Lauper unveils report on LGBTQ youth homelessness," 28 June 2018 The overall ranking improvement took place as Cincinnati Children’s broke ground on an ambitious $600 million expansion into the Avondale neighborhood for a new clinical care building. Anne Saker, Cincinnati.com, "Cincinnati Children's Hospital is No. 2 overall, tops for cancer, says U.S. News & World Report," 26 June 2018

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


1847, in the meaning defined above


1836, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for ranking

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

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The first known use of ranking was in 1836

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English Language Learners Definition of ranking

 (Entry 1 of 2)

chiefly US : having a high position or the highest position in a group or organization



English Language Learners Definition of ranking (Entry 2 of 2)

: a list of people or things that are ordered according to their quality, ability, size, etc.
: the position of a person or thing in the rankings

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