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See more synonyms for procedure on Thesaurus.com
  1. an act or a manner of proceeding in any action or process; conduct.
  2. a particular course or mode of action.
  3. any given mode of conducting legal, parliamentary, or other business, especially litigation and judicial proceedings.
  4. Computers.
    1. the sequence of actions or instructions to be followed in solving a problem or accomplishing a task.
    2. Also called subprogram.a group of statements that may be used at one or more points in a computer program.
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Origin of procedure

From the French word procédure, dating back to 1605–15. See proceed, -ure


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for procedure

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The procedure in this case is the same as for currant jelly.

    Woman's Institute Library of Cookery, Vol. 5

    Woman's Institute of Domestic Arts and Sciences

  • The method of procedure depends upon the form of machine in use.

    Flying Machines

    W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell

  • Taste and conscience only differ in their provinces, not in their procedure.

    Albert Durer

    T. Sturge Moore

  • Once he varied this procedure by glancing up while still in the middle of a row.

    The Law-Breakers

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • There was bad blood over principles and procedure, policies and plans.

    Blood and Iron

    John Hubert Greusel

British Dictionary definitions for procedure


  1. a way of acting or progressing in a course of action, esp an established method
  2. the established mode or form of conducting the business of a legislature, the enforcement of a legal right, etc
  3. computing another name for subroutine
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Derived Formsprocedural, adjectiveprocedurally, adverb
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 procedure


1610s, "fact or manner of proceeding," from French procédure "manner of proceeding" (c.1200), from Old French proceder "to proceed" (see proceed). Meaning "method of conducting business in Parliament" is from 1839.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

procedure in Medicine


  1. A series of steps taken to accomplish an end.
  2. A surgical operation or technique.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.