- to strengthen with some added piece, support, or material: to reinforce a wall.
- to strengthen (a military force) with additional personnel, ships, or aircraft: to reinforce a garrison.
- to strengthen; make more forcible or effective: to reinforce efforts.
- to augment; increase: to reinforce a supply.
- Psychology. to strengthen the probability of (a response to a given stimulus) by giving or withholding a reward.
- something that reinforces.
- a metal band on the rear part of the bore of a gun, where the explosion occurs.
Also reenforce, re-enforce.
Origin of reinforce
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- to give added strength or support to
- to give added emphasis to; stress, support, or increasehis rudeness reinforced my determination
- to give added support to (a military force) by providing more men, supplies, etc
- psychol to reward an action or response of (a human or animal) so that it becomes more likely to occur again
Word Origin for reinforce
C17: from obsolete renforce, from French renforcer; see re- + inforce enforce
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 reinforcer
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- A stimulus, such as a reward, that in operant conditioning maintains or strengthens a desired response.
- To give more force or effectiveness to something; strengthen.
- To reward an individual, especially an experimental subject, with a reinforcer subsequent to a desired response or performance.
- To stimulate a response by means of a reinforcer.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.