Definition of adaptation in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /adəpˈteɪʃ(ə)n/


[mass noun]
1The action or process of adapting or being adapted: the adaptation of teaching strategy to meet students' needs [count noun]: adaptations to the school curriculum
More example sentences
  • It is a process of adaptation, a habit acquired with effort, pain, and tedium.
  • This was considered critical for highly educated immigrants, because settlement and adaptation is facilitated by social interaction.
  • Both processes exemplify adaptation or adjustment, but very different mechanisms must be involved.
converting, conversion, alteration, modification, adjustment, changing, transformation;
remodelling, revamping, reshaping, reconstruction;
tailoring, customizing
adjustment, conformity, acclimatization, accommodation, attunement, familiarization, habituation, orientation, conditioning, inurement, hardening, seasoning, acculturation, assimilation, integration, domestication, naturalization;
blending in, fitting in, settling in, settling down;
North American  acclimation
1.1 [count noun] A film, television drama, or stage play that has been adapted from a written work: a three-part adaptation of Hard Times
More example sentences
  • Television dramas were usually adaptations of stage plays, and invariably about upper classes.
  • So his latest film, an adaptation of his stage play, The Far Side of the Moon, comes as a shock.
  • Robert Louis Stevenson's timeless tale of ships and pirates has been a huge success in the guises of film and television adaptations.
1.2 Biology The process of change by which an organism or species becomes better suited to its environment: living in groups is an adaptation to increase the efficiency of hunting
More example sentences
  • They better understand the process of speciation, adaptation, and extinction.
  • The adaptation of organisms to their habitat ultimately depends upon environmental criteria.
  • We should not casually assume that earlier forms were inferior in adaptation to their particular environment.


Early 17th century: from French, from late Latin adaptatio(n-), from Latin adaptare (see adapt).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: adap|ta¦tion

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.