Definition of academy in English:

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Pronunciation: /əˈkadəmi/

noun (plural academies)

1A place of study or training in a special field: a police academy
More example sentences
  • After graduation, I was accepted into the police academy's six-month training program to become an officer.
  • All three graduated from the police academy at Yuba County Community College.
  • Smithson argues that fire and police academies should offer this training.
educational institution, training establishment, centre of learning;
school, college, university, institute, seminary, conservatory, conservatoire
historical polytechnic
1.1 dated A place of study: he was educated privately at academies in Margate
More example sentences
  • The seminary offered women more of a liberal education than the grade-school academies.
  • In London, Daisy had been educated at an academy for young ladies where she gained a reputation as an extrovert.
  • She had decided that I was becoming too much like a boy and requested I to be sent off to my all girls academy to be educated and taught how to be proper.
1.2(In England) an inner-city school which is funded by the government and sometimes also by a private individual or organization but is not controlled by the local authority.
Example sentences
  • The second proposed city academy in Islington is to be built out of the closure of Islington Green.
  • Ministers want to see 200 academies set up to replace failing schools by 2010, partly supported by some of the richest people in the country.
  • Academies are usually built to replace existing struggling schools, the running costs being funded directly by the Government rather than via the local education authority.
1.3US & Scottish A secondary school, in the US typically a private one: Mark left St Andrews Academy with five highers, and studied maths at Glasgow University
More example sentences
  • Secondary head teachers said academies should be encouraged to collaborate with neighbouring schools.
  • City academies are publicly-funded independent secondary schools, given more freedom than normal state schools to help them raise standards in disadvantaged urban areas.
  • Independent schools are also coming under pressure to invest more money in facilities as the Government invests in new secondary schools and academies.
1.4 (the Academy) The teaching school founded by Plato.
2A society or institution of distinguished scholars and artists or scientists that aims to promote and maintain standards in its particular field: the Royal Academy of Arts
More example sentences
  • The Royal Society is an independent academy promoting the natural and applied sciences.
  • He was appointed to numerous academies and societies in Canada and abroad including Honorary Consulting Physician at three different Ontario hospitals and the Chair of Medical Research.
  • He is to step down as chairman of the institution after artists at the academy called for his resignation.


Late Middle English (denoting the garden where Plato taught): from French académie or Latin academia, from Greek akadēmeia, from Akadēmos, the hero after whom Plato's garden was named.

  • An academy today is a place of learning or culture. It is fitting, then, that the word originated with one of the most influential scholars who ever lived, the Greek philosopher Plato. During the 4th century bc he taught in a garden in Athens called the Akadēmeia, which was named after an ancient hero called Akadēmos. It gave its name to the school Plato founded, the Academy. See also oscar

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: acad|emy

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