Synonyms & Antonyms of instruct

1 to cause to acquire knowledge or skill in some field
  • spent his military career instructing young pilots

Synonyms for instruct

Words Related to instruct

2 to give information to
  • instructed everyone in the use of the new telephone system

Synonyms for instruct

Words Related to instruct

Phrases Synonymous with instruct

Near Antonyms for instruct

3 to issue orders to (someone) by right of authority
  • the proctors instructed everyone to put their pencils down and hand in their tests

Synonyms for instruct

Words Related to instruct

Near Antonyms for instruct

Antonyms for instruct

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Frequently Asked Questions About instruct

How is the word instruct different from other verbs like it?

Some common synonyms of instruct are discipline, educate, school, teach, and train. While all these words mean "to cause to acquire knowledge or skill," instruct suggests methodical or formal teaching.

instructs raw recruits in military drill

Where would discipline be a reasonable alternative to instruct?

While in some cases nearly identical to instruct, discipline implies training in habits of order and precision.

a disciplined mind

When is educate a more appropriate choice than instruct?

The words educate and instruct are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, educate implies development of the mind.

more things than formal schooling serve to educate a person

When can school be used instead of instruct?

While the synonyms school and instruct are close in meaning, school implies training or disciplining especially in what is hard to master.

schooled the horse in five gaits

When is it sensible to use teach instead of instruct?

The meanings of teach and instruct largely overlap; however, teach applies to any manner of imparting information or skill so that others may learn.

taught us a lot about our planet

When might train be a better fit than instruct?

Although the words train and instruct have much in common, train stresses instruction and drill with a specific end in view.

trained foreign pilots to operate the new aircraft

Learn More About instruct

Time Traveler for instruct

Time Traveler

The first known use of instruct was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Instruct.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on instruct

Nglish: Translation of instruct for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of instruct for Arabic Speakers


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