underachiever

noun

un·​der·​achiev·​er ˌən-dər-ə-ˈchē-vər How to pronounce underachiever (audio)
: one (such as a student) that fails to attain a predicted level of achievement or does not do as well as expected
underachieve intransitive verb
underachievement noun

Examples of underachiever in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In the Clippers’ 123-93 loss to the Dallas Mavericks in Game 5 of their first-round series, the longtime postseason underachiever delivered a Harden Special for the ages, making only two of 12 shots and scoring seven points. Houston Mitchell, Los Angeles Times, 3 May 2024 With 12 matches remaining, the perennial underachievers look likely to lose the 'Neverkusen' tag and finally lift the German top flight crown for the first time in their history come May. Tom Sanderson, Forbes, 29 Mar. 2024 But the actor also conveys the gnawing frustration of an underachiever still clutching onto his dream. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 12 Apr. 2024 The supervisor’s son Klaus (Theo Dahl) is insecure about his across-the-board Bs, fretting that mediocre grades will steer him into the life of an underachiever. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 19 Feb. 2024 Maybe the 2023 Bengals were underachievers AND overachievers. Mike Bass Special To Cincinnati Enquirer Usa Today Network, The Enquirer, 13 Jan. 2024 Successful underachiever working for Vincent Plum Bail Bonds as a recovery agent, hunting down losers who've skipped out on their bond. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, 9 Aug. 2023 Knight is 100 percent correct that the grapefruit is the underachiever of the citrus family. EW.com, 4 Mar. 2024 Will Dak Prescott – who threw a pick-six in the second quarter that Darnell Savage returned 64 yards – ever silence critics who label him as an underachiever in the playoffs? USA TODAY, 14 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'underachiever.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1952, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of underachiever was in 1952

Dictionary Entries Near underachiever

Cite this Entry

“Underachiever.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/underachiever. Accessed 14 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

underachiever

noun
un·​der·​achiev·​er ˌən-də-rə-ˈchē-vər How to pronounce underachiever (audio)
: one (as a student) that fails to do as well as expected

Medical Definition

underachiever

noun
un·​der·​achiev·​er ˌən-dər-ə-ˈchē-vər How to pronounce underachiever (audio)
: a person (as a student) who fails to attain a predicted level of achievement or does not do as well as expected
underachieve
-ˈchēv
intransitive verb
underachieved; underachieving
underachievement noun

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