experimental

adjective
ex·​per·​i·​men·​tal | \ ik-ˌsper-ə-ˈmen-tᵊl How to pronounce experimental (audio) also -ˌspir- \

Definition of experimental

1 : of, relating to, or based on experience or experiment
2a : serving the ends of or used as a means of experimentation an experimental school
b : relating to or having the characteristics of experiment : tentative still in the experimental stage

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from experimental

experimentally \ ik-​ˌsper-​ə-​ˈmen-​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce experimental (audio) also  -​ˌspir-​ \ adverb

Synonyms for experimental

Synonyms

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of experimental in a Sentence

The fuel is being used on an experimental basis. an experimental procedure for patients suffering from leukemia
Recent Examples on the Web Some of the films are award-winning while others are experimental. Dorothy Dworkin, sun-sentinel.com, 14 Sep. 2021 According to the auction house, only two—possibly three—still exist, rendering this experimental 4×4 exceptionally rare. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 9 Sep. 2021 At the moment, arguing that the vaccines aren’t actually FDA-approved is an easy tactic used to try to convince people that the vaccines are still experimental or were never properly tested. Hilda Bastian, The Atlantic, 23 Aug. 2021 This is the number that Maxwell backs most, but the ONS warns that these figures are just experimental and may not be final. Grace Browne, Wired, 4 Aug. 2021 Key’s comparisons are inaccurate, experts say, because the coronavirus vaccine is not experimental. Washington Post, 2 Aug. 2021 The vaccine is experimental, still not fully approved, is one line of attack. David Bauder, orlandosentinel.com, 21 July 2021 The vaccine is experimental, still not fully approved, is one line of attack. David Bauder, ajc, 20 July 2021 The vaccine is experimental, still not fully approved, is one line of attack. David Bauder, Star Tribune, 20 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'experimental.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of experimental

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for experimental

Middle English, borrowed from Medieval Latin experīmentālis, from Latin experīmentum "testing, experience, proof" + -ālis -al entry 1 — more at experiment entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About experimental

Time Traveler for experimental

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near experimental

experiment

experimental

experimental design

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for experimental

Last Updated

18 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Experimental.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/experimental. Accessed 24 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for experimental

experimental

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of experimental

: relating to a scientific experiment or to scientific experiments in general
: made or done in order to see how well something works
: using a new way of doing or thinking about something

experimental

adjective
ex·​per·​i·​men·​tal | \ ik-ˌsper-ə-ˈmen-tᵊl How to pronounce experimental (audio) \

Kids Definition of experimental

: relating to, based on, or used for experiment He's trying an experimental treatment for the disease.

experimental

adjective
ex·​per·​i·​men·​tal | \ ik-ˌsper-ə-ˈment-ᵊl also -ˌspir- How to pronounce experimental (audio) \

Medical Definition of experimental

1 : of, relating to, or based on experience or experiment
2 : founded on or derived from experiment the heart of the experimental method is the direct control of the thing studied— B. F. Skinner
3 of a disease : intentionally produced especially in laboratory animals for the purpose of study experimental diabetes

Other Words from experimental

experimentally \ -​ᵊl-​ē How to pronounce experimental (audio) \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on experimental

Nglish: Translation of experimental for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of experimental for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Dog Words Quiz

  • shiba puppy more or less demanding cuddles
  • Which of the following animals has a dog in its etymology?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!