Definition of determination in English:

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Pronunciation: /dəˌtərməˈnāSH(ə)n/


1Firmness of purpose; resoluteness: he advanced with an unflinching determination
More example sentences
  • His leadership qualities and determination to challenge capitalism earned him lasting respect from all who knew him, particularly in his role as union steward and factory convenor.
  • They haven't been particularly good, but there has been a robustness and determination to them; qualities lacking earlier in the season.
  • His determination to improve the quality of colonial workmanship and to impose a businesslike system of payments incurred many enemies.
resolution, resolve, willpower, strength of character, single-mindedness, purposefulness, intentness;
staunchness, perseverance, persistence, tenacity, staying power;
strong-mindedness, backbone;
stubbornness, doggedness, obstinacy;
spirit, courage, pluck, grit, stout-heartedness
informal guts, spunk, balls, moxie
formal pertinacity
2The process of establishing something exactly, typically by calculation or research: determination of molecular structures
More example sentences
  • Explanation is substituted for deduction, prediction, solution, determination and calculation as the objectives of science.
  • To date, this has hindered determination of the molecular structure of the pigments.
  • However, proteins sharing the same fold can have different functions, and structure determination and analysis will not always mean that function can be derived.
calculation, discovery, ascertainment, establishment, deduction, divination, diagnosis, discernment, verification, confirmation
2.1 Law The settlement of a dispute by the authoritative decision of a judge or arbitrator.
Example sentences
  • It would be artificial to do so in the circumstances, pending the arbitrators' determination of the matters that are within their jurisdiction.
  • It does, however, with the authority of the Act, lay the ground for enforcement by the provision that until final determination of the dispute the decision is binding.
  • So far as our claim for damages pursuant to those undertakings are concerned, the order I seek is for it to be remitted to a judge for determination.
2.2 Law A judicial decision or sentence.
Example sentences
  • Since that time the applicants have been contesting that determination.
  • I have to say that I find the Agency's stance on the Wretton determination surprising.
  • At paragraph 16 of his determination the Adjudicator concluded that he accepted Dr Gallwey's assessment.
3The controlling or deciding of something’s nature or outcome: genetic sex determination
More example sentences
  • The gene doublesex of Drosophila is the last gene in the genetic cascade that controls sex determination.
  • Hence, Sxl does not appear to play the key discriminating role in controlling sex determination and dosage compensation in sciarids that it plays in Drosophila.
  • This indicates that the maternal Odsm1 genotype itself, rather than the genotype of the offspring, controls the sex determination.
setting, specification, settlement, designation, arrangement, establishment, prescription
4 Law The cessation of an estate or interest.
Example sentences
  • It however now seems clear, from a case in Yelverton, that the assignment by the tenant at will of his interest to a third party is no determination of the tenancy, unless the lessor at will have notice.
  • Thus during the war a lease could have been granted for 10 years with a provision for determination if the war ended earlier, and this would satisfy the rule in Lace v Chantler.
5 archaic A tendency to move in a fixed direction.
Example sentences
  • Second, retained membranes and septic substances result in a determination of blood to the uterus.
  • The image of God in which man was created did not consist in an inclination and determination of the will to holiness.


Late Middle English (in the senses 'settlement of a controversy by a judge or by reasoning' and 'authoritative opinion'): via Old French from Latin determinatio(n-), from the verb determinare (see determine).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: de·ter·mi·na·tion

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