Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An inherent ability, as for learning; a talent.
  • noun Archaic The condition or quality of being suitable; appropriateness.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The state or quality of being apt or fit for or suited to a purpose, place, or situation; fitness; suitableness.
  • noun A natural tendency or acquired inclination; both capacity and propensity for a certain course: as, oil has an aptitude to burn; men acquire an aptitude to particular vices.
  • noun Readiness in learning; teachableness; quickness to understand and acquire; intelligence; talent.
  • noun Synonyms Faculty, Capacity, etc. See genius.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A natural or acquired disposition or capacity for a particular purpose, or tendency to a particular action or effect.
  • noun A general fitness or suitableness; adaptation.
  • noun Readiness in learning; docility; aptness.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Natural ability to acquire knowledge or skill.
  • noun The condition of being suitable.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun inherent ability

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, tendency, from Late Latin aptitūdō, aptitude, from Latin aptus, apt; see apt.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Medieval Latin aptitudo, from Latin aptus ("apt, fit"); see apt. Compare attitude, which is a doublet of aptitude.

Examples

  • By then, the word aptitude, implying that students were being tested for natural fitness or inborn talent, would no longer do.

    The English Is Coming!

  • By then, the word aptitude, implying that students were being tested for natural fitness or inborn talent, would no longer do.

    The English Is Coming!

  • I agree that any genetic differences in aptitude probably predated selective breeding by slave owners.

    Think Progress » New basketball league open to whites only, to get away from the ‘street-ball’ played by ‘people of color.’

  • Now, however, "fresh research adds to the debate about gender difference in aptitude for mathematics, including efforts to explain the relative scarcity of women among professors of science, math, and engineering."

    Apollo's Daughter :: Math

  • Now, however, "fresh research adds to the debate about gender difference in aptitude for mathematics, including efforts to explain the relative scarcity of women among professors of science, math, and engineering."

    Apollo's Daughter :: July 25th, 2008

  • A study by the RAND Corporation, commissioned by the Pentagon and published in 2005, evaluated several factors that affect military performance — experience, training, aptitude, and so forth — and found that aptitude is key.

    VDARE.com: Blog Articles » Print » Army Getting Lower IQ Recruits

  • A study by the RAND Corporation, commissioned by the Pentagon and published in 2005, evaluated several factors that affect military performance — experience, training, aptitude, and so forth — and found that aptitude is key.

    GOP Debate–Hardly Any Mention Of Immigration

  • A study by the RAND Corporation, commissioned by the Pentagon and published in 2005, evaluated several factors that affect military performance — experience, training, aptitude, and so forth — and found that aptitude is key.

    Army Getting Lower IQ Recruits

  • And in one of the first long-term aptitude studies, researchers found that preemies aren't necessarily destined for a lifetime of learning problems.

    Preemies Grow Up

  • Making the admiration sexual rather than based on aptitude is one way to avoid recognizing the lack of said quality in himself.

    Breakfast in Bed

Comments

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  • I seem to have been born with an aptitude for a way of life that was doomed, although I did not understand that at the time. Wendell Berry "A Native Hill"

    July 19, 2008

  • "They will judge you and your aptitude for success by your written messages."- The Readers Handbook, Catherine Stephens Ph.D, pg.385

    December 1, 2010