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learning

[lur-ning]
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noun
  1. knowledge acquired by systematic study in any field of scholarly application.
  2. the act or process of acquiring knowledge or skill.
  3. Psychology. the modification of behavior through practice, training, or experience.
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Origin of learning

before 900; Middle English lerning, Old English leornung. See learn, -ing1
Related formsun·learn·ing, adjective

Synonyms

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1. Learning, erudition, lore, scholarship refer to knowledge existing or acquired. Learning is the most general term. It may refer to knowledge obtained by systematic study or by trial and error: a man of learning; learning in the real world. Erudition suggests a thorough, formal, and profound sort of knowledge obtained by extensive research; it is especially applied to knowledge in fields other than those of mathematics and physical sciences: a man of vast erudition in languages. Lore is accumulated knowledge in a particular field, especially of a curious, anecdotal, or traditional nature; the word is now somewhat literary: nature lore; local lore. Scholarship is the formalized learning that is taught in schools, especially as actively employed by a person trying to master some field of knowledge or extend its bounds: high standards of scholarship in history.

learn

[lurn]
verb (used with object), learned [lurnd] /lɜrnd/ or learnt, learn·ing.
  1. to acquire knowledge of or skill in by study, instruction, or experience: to learn French; to learn to ski.
  2. to become informed of or acquainted with; ascertain: to learn the truth.
  3. to memorize: He learned the poem so he could recite it at the dinner.
  4. to gain (a habit, mannerism, etc.) by experience, exposure to example, or the like; acquire: She learned patience from her father.
  5. (of a device or machine, especially a computer) to perform an analogue of human learning with artificial intelligence.
  6. Nonstandard. to instruct in; teach.
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verb (used without object), learned [lurnd] /lɜrnd/ or learnt, learn·ing.
  1. to acquire knowledge or skill: to learn rapidly.
  2. to become informed (usually followed by of): to learn of an accident.
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Origin of learn

before 900; Middle English lernen, Old English leornian to learn, read, ponder (cognate with German lernen); akin to lesan to glean (cognate with German lesen to read). See lear
Related formslearn·a·ble, adjectivemis·learn, verb, mis·learned or mis·learnt, mis·learn·ing.out·learn, verb (used with object), out·learned or out·learnt, out·learn·ing.re·learn, verb, re·learned or re·learnt, re·learn·ing.
Can be confusedlearn teach

Synonym study

1. Learn, ascertain, detect, discover imply adding to one's store of facts. To learn is to add to one's knowledge or information: to learn a language. To ascertain is to verify facts by inquiry or analysis: to ascertain the truth about an event. To detect implies becoming aware of something that had been obscure, secret, or concealed: to detect a flaw in reasoning. To discover is used with objective clauses as a synonym of learn in order to suggest that the new information acquired is surprising to the learner: I discovered that she had been married before.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

informationtrainingliteraturesciencestudyschoolingresearchculturewisdomloretuitioneruditionscholarshipletters

Examples from the Web for learning

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The learning to take it manfully is what as individuals we get out of it.

  • As to "earning her living," I am not sure but she was learning to do it in several ways.

  • Methinks, Alleyne, it is this learning which you have taught her that has taken all the life and sap from her.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • So, too, did the Greeks, and divers other ancient peoples who were famed for their learning.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • Already she was learning that peace of mind is essential to successful endeavor.

    K

    Mary Roberts Rinehart


British Dictionary definitions for learning

learning

noun
  1. knowledge gained by study; instruction or scholarship
  2. the act of gaining knowledge
  3. psychol any relatively permanent change in behaviour that occurs as a direct result of experience
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learn

verb learns, learning, learned (lɜːnd) or learnt
  1. (when tr, may take a clause as object) to gain knowledge of (something) or acquire skill in (some art or practice)
  2. (tr) to commit to memory
  3. (tr) to gain by experience, example, etc
  4. (intr; often foll by of or about) to become informed; know
  5. not standard to teach
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Derived Formslearnable, adjective

Word Origin

Old English leornian; related to Old High German lirnen
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 learning

n.

Old English leornung "learning, study," from leornian (see learn). Learning curve attested by 1907.

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learn

v.

Old English leornian "to get knowledge, be cultivated, study, read, think about," from Proto-Germanic *liznojan (cf. Old Frisian lernia, Middle Dutch leeren, Dutch leren, Old High German lernen, German lernen "to learn," Gothic lais "I know"), with a base sense of "to follow or find the track," from PIE *leis- "track." Related to German Gleis "track," and to Old English læst "sole of the foot" (see last (n.)).

The transitive sense (He learned me how to read), now vulgar, was acceptable from c.1200 until early 19c., from Old English læran "to teach" (cf. Dutch leren, German lehren "to teach," literally "to make known;" see lore), and is preserved in past participle adjective learned "having knowledge gained by study." Related: Learning.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

learning in Medicine

learning

(lûrnĭng)
n.
  1. The act, process, or experience of gaining knowledge or skill.
  2. Knowledge or skill gained through schooling or study.
  3. Behavioral modification, especially through experience or conditioning.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with learning

learn

In addition to the idioms beginning with learn

  • learn by heart
  • learn one's lesson
  • learn to live with

also see:

  • by heart, learn
  • little knowledge (learning) is a dangerous thing
  • live and learn
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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.