or drop-out

See more synonyms for dropout on Thesaurus.com
  1. an act or instance of dropping out.
  2. a student who withdraws before completing a course of instruction.
  3. a student who withdraws from high school after having reached the legal age to do so.
  4. a person who withdraws from established society, especially to pursue an alternate lifestyle.
  5. a person who withdraws from a competition, job, task, etc.: the first dropout from the presidential race.
  6. Rugby. a drop kick made by a defending team from within its own 25-yard (23-meter) line as a result of a touchdown or of the ball's having touched or gone outside of a touch-in-goal line or the dead-ball line.
  7. Also called highlight halftone. a halftone negative or plate in which dots have been eliminated from highlights by continued etching, burning in, opaquing, or the like.
  8. Also called dropout error. the loss of portions of the information on a recorded magnetic tape due to contamination of the magnetic medium or poor contact with the tape heads.

Origin of dropout

1925–30, Americanism; noun use of verb phrase drop out
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for dropout

quitter, truant, hippie, nonconformist, failure

Examples from the Web for dropout

Contemporary Examples of dropout

Historical Examples of dropout

British Dictionary definitions for dropout


  1. a student who fails to complete a school or college course
  2. a person who rejects conventional society
  3. drop-out rugby a drop kick taken by the defending team to restart play, as after a touchdown
  4. drop-out electronics a momentary loss of signal in a magnetic recording medium as a result of an imperfection in its magnetic coating
verb drop out (intr, adverb often foll by of)
  1. to abandon or withdraw from (a school, social group, job, etc)
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

Word Origin and History for dropout

"one who 'drops out' of something," 1930, from drop (v.) + out (adv.). As a phrase, drop out "withdraw" is recorded from 1550s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper