\ ˈstə-dē How to pronounce study (audio) \
plural studies

Definition of study

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a state of contemplation : reverie
2a : application of the mental faculties to the acquisition of knowledge years of study
b : such application in a particular field or to a specific subject the study of Latin
c : careful or extended consideration the proposal is under study
d(1) : a careful examination or analysis of a phenomenon, development, or question
(2) : the published report of such a study
3 : a building or room devoted to study or literary pursuits
4 : purpose, intent it has been the study of my life to avoid those weaknesses— Jane Austen
5a : a branch or department of learning : subject often used in plural American studies
b : the activity or work of a student returning to her studies after vacation
c : an object of study or deliberation every gesture a careful study— Marcia Davenport
d : something attracting close attention or examination
6 : a person who learns or memorizes something (such as a part in a play) usually used with a qualifying adjective he's a quick study
7 : a literary or artistic production intended as a preliminary outline, an experimental interpretation, or an exploratory analysis of specific features or characteristics
8 : a musical composition for the practice of a point of technique


studied; studying

Definition of study (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to engage in study
b : to undertake formal study of a subject
2 dialect : meditate, reflect
3 : endeavor, try

transitive verb

1 : to read in detail especially with the intention of learning
2 : to engage in the study of study biology
3 : plot, design
4 : to consider attentively or in detail studying his face for a reaction

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Other Words from study


studier \ ˈstə-​dē-​ər How to pronounce study (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for study


consider, study, contemplate, weigh mean to think about in order to arrive at a judgment or decision. consider may suggest giving thought to in order to reach a suitable conclusion, opinion, or decision. refused even to consider my proposal study implies sustained purposeful concentration and attention to details and minutiae. study the plan closely contemplate stresses focusing one's thoughts on something but does not imply coming to a conclusion or decision. contemplate the consequences of refusing weigh implies attempting to reach the truth or arrive at a decision by balancing conflicting claims or evidence. weigh the pros and cons of the case

Examples of study in a Sentence

Noun Becoming a doctor requires years of study. You can improve your knowledge of the natural world by study and observation. She will return to her studies after vacation. He left the service to pursue his studies. The agency conducted an environmental study. He took part in a study of childhood obesity. The study of the new drug will be published next year. Verb Did you study for the test? She's studying to be a teacher. I studied the request carefully. She was studying his face for a reaction. The proposal was studied in great detail. The effects of the drug have never been thoroughly studied.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Teacher masking and daily symptom screening appeared to be the strongest risk reducers, the study said. Julie Washington, cleveland, "CVS and Walgreens wasted large number of vaccine doses; federal face mask requirements extended for public transportation: Coronavirus update for May 3, 2021," 3 May 2021 That represented a 45% increase in tech jobs since 2008, the study said. Irene Plagianos, WSJ, "Tech Jobs Lead the Way in New York City’s Covid-19 Pandemic Hiring," 2 May 2021 And shortages aren't predicted to stop, the study said. Tori B. Powell, CBS News, "Mental health services struggled to meet increased demand during pandemic, study finds," 1 May 2021 These past studies suggested that cancer was rare, affecting less than 1% of the population, the study said. Katie Hunt, CNN, "Plague wasn't the only disease that afflicted medieval Britons. Cancer did, too," 29 Apr. 2021 But the study said the COVID-19 pandemic has caused myriad hardships for businesses. Sarah Bahari, Dallas News, "These North Texas cities are among best places to start a business, study says," 27 Apr. 2021 The way that water moves around the planet's surface is one factor that causes the two poles to drift around, the study said. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, "Climate change has shifted the Earth's axis, new study suggests," 26 Apr. 2021 That was similar elsewhere, including in Berkeley, California; Salt Lake City; and San Diego, the study said. Darcy Costello, The Courier-Journal, "Why overdue book fines could soon be history at Louisville public libraries," 22 Apr. 2021 While some women experienced miscarriage, premature birth and babies that were small, the frequency of these events was similar to studies before the pandemic, the study said. Ivan Pereira, ABC News, "Messenger RNA COVID vaccines likely safe for pregnant women: Study," 21 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Bills that would study the possibility of statewide reparations in New Jersey, New York, and Oregon have been parked in legislative committees., "State efforts to pay reparations to descendants of slaves stall at state level amid cries for federal action," 25 Apr. 2021 Investigators will study how officers are trained and policies implemented, senior Justice Department officials said. Sadie Gurman, WSJ, "U.S. Launches Probe Into Minneapolis Police Practices After George Floyd Killing," 21 Apr. 2021 Administration of the single-dose immunization made by Johnson & Johnson has been paused as federal regulators study six rare reports of severe blood clotting that may stem from the product. Hallie Miller,, "COVID vaccine appointments are more widely available in Maryland, but officials say demand remains high," 21 Apr. 2021 As scientists study autism in the lab, autistic individuals like me must be included in that process — not only as subjects, but as co-investigators. Amy Gravino, CNN, "I now know what caused my autism, which changes everything — and nothing," 21 Apr. 2021 The environmental report will study two location options, as well as an extension of the trolley to the airport, along with improvements to local roads and highway access, the agency said. Jennifer Van Grove, San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego’s ‘Grand Central Station’ moving forward," 21 Apr. 2021 But its global rollout was thrown into doubt last week when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended that use of the vaccine be paused while scientists study a possible link to rare blood clots. Melody Petersen Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Coronavirus Today: California encourages vaccine “passports,” just not by name," 19 Apr. 2021 The Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which has been put on hold while officials study reports of very rare but dangerous blood clots, can be stored in temperatures just above freezing. Thomas Curwen, Anchorage Daily News, "COVID-19 vaccines — minus the needle? Researchers working on capsules, nasal sprays," 17 Apr. 2021 According to a May 2020 CoStar study Macy’s is the single largest tenant in U.S. retail malls, with 6.2 percent of total existing square footage, followed by J.C. Penney with 6 percent. Sanford Stein, Forbes, "Macy’s Backstage Move Is An Escalator Down, Not Up," 16 Apr. 2021

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for study


Middle English studie, from Anglo-French estudie, from Latin studium, from studēre to devote oneself, study; probably akin to Latin tundere to beat — more at contusion

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Learn More about study

Time Traveler for study

Time Traveler

The first known use of study was in the 13th century

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Statistics for study

Last Updated

8 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Study.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for study



English Language Learners Definition of study

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the activity or process of learning about something by reading, memorizing facts, attending school, etc.
: an area of learning taught in a school
: something that a person studies or gives attention to



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

: to read, memorize facts, attend school, etc., in order to learn about a subject
: to give careful attention to (something)
: to conduct an organized experiment in order to learn more about (something)


\ ˈstə-dē How to pronounce study (audio) \
studied; studying

Kids Definition of study

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make an effort to learn about something by reading, investigating, or memorizing
2 : to give close attention to I studied the X-rays as Dr. Cone pointed things out to me.— Judy Blume, Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing


plural studies

Kids Definition of study (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of making an effort to learn by reading, practicing, or memorizing
2 : a careful investigation or examination of something the study of a disease
3 : a room especially for study, reading, or writing

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More from Merriam-Webster on study

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for study

Nglish: Translation of study for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of study for Arabic Speakers

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