su·​per·​vise | \ ˈsü-pər-ˌvīz \
supervised; supervising

Definition of supervise

transitive verb

: to be in charge of : superintend, oversee supervise a large staff supervised the ship's daily operations

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Examples of supervise in a Sentence

The builder supervised the construction of the house. She supervises a staff of 30 workers.

Recent Examples on the Web

Pederson must now serve a three-year period of parole, known as supervised release, with conditions for that period set by the Department of Corrections, Callinan said. Jim Newton, Lake County News-Sun, "Man convicted of terrorist threat against Lake County Courthouse sentenced and released," 9 July 2018 In any event, the memo is no basis to demand that Mr. Barr, when confirmed, recuse himself from his duty to supervise Mr. Mueller’s investigation. Michael B. Mukasey, WSJ, "The Phony Attack on William Barr," 24 Dec. 2018 Busy moms can bring kids to be supervised for $3 per child. Mary Lou Cruz,, "Sunrise area events July 18-28," 13 July 2018 Managers too lazy to supervise or too cowardly to fire would dispatch to the copy desk anybody who had bungled every other assignment. John E. Mcintyre,, "We owe a debt to Hank Glamann," 13 July 2018 Trade-Tech President Laurence Frank assigned two of his vice presidents, Leticia Barajas and Kaneesha Tarrant, to supervise development of the program. Rosanna Xia,, "L.A. Trade-Tech administrators received $157,000 for work they failed to justify, investigation finds," 8 July 2018 Dogs need to be supervised with those kinds of treats. Cathy M. Rosenthal,, "Pet World: Wide-Awake Cat Is Keeping Her Up All Night," 5 July 2018 During the courtship period, possible mates spend time together with family members there to supervise, never alone. Natalie Stone,, "John David Duggar Is Courting Abbie Burnett: 'We Fell in Love Very Quickly'," 26 June 2018 That tweet spoke volumes to Dave Sullivan, an analyst at research firm AutoPacific who used to supervise Ford Motor factories. Fortune, "'Words Fail Me. It’s Insanity.' While Elon Musk Loves Tesla's New Tent Factory, Others Aren't So Sure," 25 June 2018

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

circa 1645, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for supervise

Medieval Latin supervisus, past participle of supervidēre, from Latin super- + vidēre to see — more at wit

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Statistics for supervise

Last Updated

12 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for supervise

The first known use of supervise was circa 1645

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More Definitions for supervise



English Language Learners Definition of supervise

: to be in charge of (someone or something) : to watch and direct (someone or something)


su·​per·​vise | \ ˈsü-pər-ˌvīz \
supervised; supervising

Kids Definition of supervise

: to coordinate and direct the activities of Who will supervise the workers while you are away?

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