[ rohl-pley-ing ]

  1. a method of instruction or psychotherapy aimed at changing attitudes and behavior, in which participants act out designated roles relevant to real-life situations.

  2. the modifying of a person's behavior to accord with a desired personal image, as to impress others or conform to a particular environment.

Origin of role-playing

First recorded in 1940–45

Words Nearby role-playing Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use role-playing in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for role-playing


  1. psychol activity in which a person imitates, consciously or unconsciously, a role uncharacteristic of himself: See also psychodrama

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