Definition of coefficient in English:


Syllabification: co·ef·fi·cient
Pronunciation: /ˌkōəˈfiSHənt


  • 1 Mathematics A numerical or constant quantity placed before and multiplying the variable in an algebraic expression (e.g., 4 in 4xy).
    More example sentences
    • He extended the applications of the operational method to linear ordinary differential equations with variable coefficients.
    • The problem was to find the roots by adding, subtracting, multiplying, dividing and taking roots of expressions in the coefficients.
    • Hermite had posed the problem of finding the minimal values of quadratic forms in n variables whose coefficients were real.
  • 2 Physics A multiplier or factor that measures some property: coefficients of elasticity the drag coefficient
    More example sentences
    • The drag coefficient combines several ballistic properties of typical projectiles.
    • This measure of a material's elasticity is called its coefficient of restitution.
    • The shading coefficient is the measure of solar heat gain through the window.


mid 17th century (in the sense 'cooperating to produce a result'): from modern Latin coefficient-, from com- 'together' + efficient- 'accomplishing' (see efficient).

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