[ uh-soh-see-ey-shuhn, -shee- ]
See synonyms for: associationassociations on

  1. an organization of people with a common purpose and having a formal structure.

  2. the act of associating or state of being associated.

  1. friendship; companionship: Their close association did not last long.

  2. connection or combination.

  3. the connection or relation of ideas, feelings, sensations, etc.; correlation of elements of perception, reasoning, or the like.

  4. an idea, image, feeling, etc., suggested by or connected with something other than itself; an accompanying thought, emotion, or the like; an overtone or connotation: My associations with that painting are of springlike days.

  5. Ecology. a group of plants of one or more species living together under uniform environmental conditions and having a uniform and distinctive aspect.

  6. Chemistry. a weak form of chemical bonding involving aggregation of molecules of the same compound.

  7. Astronomy. stellar association.

Origin of association

First recorded in 1525–35; from Middle French, from Medieval Latin associātiōn-, stem of associātiō “accompaniment, unification”; equivalent to associate + -ion

Other words for association

Other words from association

  • as·so·ci·a·tion·al, adjective
  • in·ter·as·so·ci·a·tion, noun
  • non·as·so·ci·a·tion, noun
  • non·as·so·ci·a·tion·al, adjective
  • pro·as·so·ci·a·tion, adjective
  • pseu·do·as·so·ci·a·tion·al, adjective
  • re·as·so·ci·a·tion, noun
  • sub·as·so·ci·a·tion, noun
  • sub·as·so·ci·a·tion·al, adjective

Words Nearby association Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use association in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for association


/ (əˌsəʊsɪˈeɪʃən, -ʃɪ-) /

  1. a group of people having a common purpose or interest; a society or club

  2. the act of associating or the state of being associated

  1. friendship or companionship: their association will not last

  2. a mental connection of ideas, feelings, or sensations: association of revolution with bloodshed

  3. psychol the mental process of linking ideas so that the recurrence of one idea automatically recalls the other: See also free association

  4. chem the formation of groups of molecules and ions, esp in liquids, held together by weak chemical bonds

  5. ecology a group of similar plants that grow in a uniform environment and contain one or more dominant species

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for association


[ ə-sō′sē-āshən, -shē- ]

  1. A large number of organisms in a specific geographic area constituting a community with one or two dominant species.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.