[ reg-yuh-ley-shuhn ]
See synonyms for: regulationregulations on

  1. a law, rule, or other order prescribed by authority, especially to regulate conduct: Safety regulations require the use of impact-resistant helmets.

  2. the act of regulating or the state of being regulated: Adolescence is a potentially important time in the development of emotion regulation.

  1. Sports. the normal, prescribed duration of a game according to the sport's regulations, exclusive of any extra innings, overtime period, etc.: The Knicks tied the score in the final seconds of regulation, sending the game into overtime.

  2. Biology. the internal response that an organism undergoes to adapt to external stimuli (distinguished from control def. 16): Regulation of blood flow is an essential mechanism for delivering oxygen and glucose to the tissues that need it most.

  3. Genetics. the act or process of controlling the expression of genes:Scientists are hoping to discover whether viruses can be used to study gene regulation in mammalian cells.

  4. Embryology. the process by which an embryo can continue to develop normally after it has been damaged:Added cells become normally integrated into the body of the host embryo, which provides additional evidence of embryonic regulation.

  5. Electronics. the difference between maximum and minimum voltage drops between the anode and the cathode of a gas tube for a specified range of values of the anode current.

  6. Machinery. the percentage difference in some quantity related to the operation of an apparatus or machine, as the voltage output of a transformer or the speed of a motor, between the value of the quantity at no-load operation and its value at full-load operation.

  1. prescribed by or conforming to regulation: regulation army equipment.

  2. usual; normal; customary: the regulation decorations for a Halloween party.

  1. Sports. during the normal, prescribed duration of a game:Both teams are entitled to two timeouts in each half of regulation play.

Origin of regulation

First recorded in 1665–75; regulate + -ion

Other words for regulation

Other words from regulation

  • non·reg·u·la·tion, noun
  • o·ver·reg·u·la·tion, noun
  • re·reg·u·la·tion, noun
  • su·per·reg·u·la·tion, noun

Words Nearby regulation Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use regulation in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for regulation


/ (ˌrɛɡjʊˈleɪʃən) /

  1. the act or process of regulating

  2. a rule, principle, or condition that governs procedure or behaviour

  1. a governmental or ministerial order having the force of law

  2. embryol the ability of an animal embryo to develop normally after its structure has been altered or damaged in some way

  3. (modifier) as required by official rules or procedure: regulation uniform

  4. (modifier) normal; usual; conforming to accepted standards: a regulation haircut

  5. electrical engineering the change in voltage occurring when a load is connected across a power supply, caused by internal resistance (for direct current) or internal impedance (alternating current)

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

Cultural definitions for regulation


Laws through which governments can control privately owned businesses.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.