su·​per·​vise | \ ˈsü-pər-ˌvīz How to pronounce supervise (audio) \
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

Under the program, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is supervising the roundup of hundreds of geese from the city’s parks. Jessica Seaman, The Denver Post, "Protesters flock to Washington Park to protest Denver culling Canada geese," 6 July 2019 Dustin Bellinger, who also went by the name Faheem Bey, faces five years in prison, three years of supervised release, and restitution payments up to $200,000, according to court documents. Megan Cassidy,, "East Bay arson suspect pleads guilty to single count," 4 July 2019 More than 125,000 people in the criminal-justice system were supervised with monitors in 2015, compared with just 53,000 people in 2005, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts. Ava Kofman, ProPublica, "Digital Jail: How Electronic Monitoring Drives Defendants Into Debt," 3 July 2019 Corrections officers would directly supervise inmates in more open areas and there would be natural lighting and more recreation in housing areas. Christina Hall, Detroit Free Press, "This part of the Macomb County Jail is old and hot," 2 July 2019 The 67,000-square-foot building will also offer hot food, sushi and a supervised in-store child care service, according to a press release. Elliot Hughes, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "The first Milwaukee-area Festival Foods will open in November in Hales Corners," 2 July 2019 Two of Duggan’s three adult sons — Jesse and Willy — came back to help supervise. Washington Post, "When that ‘rock’ is actually a horseshoe crab and the beach becomes a respite from the city," 22 June 2019 Thomas spent many years supervising the lighting and camera crew for the Married ... Thr Staff, The Hollywood Reporter, "Meghan Markle's Father Breaks Silence, Calls Staged Paparazzi Photos "a Mistake"," 18 June 2018 They were not expected to meet again after Trump's announcement later Tuesday, but EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, who helps supervise the deal's application and settle any disputes, was set for an evening of telephone diplomacy. Fox News, "Europeans back Iran nuclear deal as Trump weighs US pullout," 8 May 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

13 Jul 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 How to pronounce supervise (audio) \
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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Comments on supervise

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