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

  • intransitive v. To be granted an academic degree or diploma: Two thirds of the entering freshmen stayed to graduate.
  • intransitive v. To change gradually or by degrees.
  • intransitive v. To advance to a new level of skill, achievement, or activity: After a summer of diving instruction, they had all graduated to back flips.
  • transitive v. To grant an academic degree or diploma to: The teachers hope to graduate her this spring.
  • transitive v. Usage Problem To receive an academic degree from.
  • transitive v. To arrange or divide into categories, steps, or grades.
  • transitive v. To divide into marked intervals, especially for use in measurement.
  • n. One who has received an academic degree or diploma.
  • n. A graduated container, such as a cylinder or beaker.
  • adj. Possessing an academic degree or diploma.
  • adj. Of, intended for, or relating to studies beyond a bachelor's degree: graduate courses.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A person who is recognized by a university as having completed the requirements of a degree studied at the institution
  • n. A person who is recognized by a high school as having completed the requirements of a course of study at the school
  • n. A graduated (marked) cup or other container, thus fit for measuring
  • adj. graduated, arranged by degrees
  • adj. holding an academic degree
  • adj. relating to an academic degree
  • v. To be recognized by a school or university as having completed the requirements of a degree studied at the institution. See note on “from” usage.
  • v. To certify (a student) as having earned a degree
  • v. To mark a scale on (something) so that it can be used for measuring
  • v. To change gradually

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Arranged by successive steps or degrees; graduated.
  • n. One who has received an academical or professional degree; one who has completed the prescribed course of study in any school or institution of learning.
  • n. A graduated cup, tube, flask, or cylinder; a glass measuring container used by apothecaries and chemists. See under Graduated.
  • intransitive v. To pass by degrees; to change gradually; to shade off
  • intransitive v. To taper, as the tail of certain birds.
  • intransitive v. To take a degree in a college or university; to become a graduate; to receive a diploma.
  • transitive v. To mark with degrees; to divide into regular steps, grades, or intervals, as the scale of a thermometer, a scheme of punishment or rewards, etc.
  • transitive v. To admit or elevate to a certain grade or degree; esp., in a college or university, to admit, at the close of the course, to an honorable standing defined by a diploma.
  • transitive v. To prepare gradually; to arrange, temper, or modify by degrees or to a certain degree; to determine the degrees of.
  • transitive v. To bring to a certain degree of consistency, by evaporation, as a fluid.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To mark with degrees, regular intervals, or divisions; divide into small regular distances: as, to graduate a thermometer, a scale, etc.
  • To arrange or place in a series of grades or gradations; establish gradation in: as, to graduate punishment.
  • To confer a degree upon at the close of a course of study, as a student in a college or university; certify by diploma, after examination, the attainment of a certain grade of learning by: as, he was graduated A. B., and afterward A. M.
  • To prepare gradually; temper or modify by degrees.
  • To raise to a higher degree, as of fineness, consistency, etc.: as, to graduate brine by evaporation.
  • To pass by degrees; change or pass gradually.
  • To receive a degree from a college or university, after examination in a course of study; be graduated.
  • Arranged in successive steps or degrees; graduated.
  • Having received a degree; having been graduated: as, a graduate student.
  • n. One who has been admitted to a degree in a college or university, or by some professional incorporated society, after examination.
  • n. A graduated glass vessel used for measuring liquids, as by chemists, apothecaries, etc.

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

  • adj. of or relating to studies beyond a bachelor's degree
  • v. make fine adjustments or divide into marked intervals for optimal measuring
  • n. a person who has received a degree from a school (high school or college or university)
  • n. a measuring instrument for measuring fluid volume; a glass container (cup or cylinder or flask) whose sides are marked with or divided into amounts
  • v. receive an academic degree upon completion of one's studies
  • v. confer an academic degree upon


Middle English graduaten, to confer a degree, from Medieval Latin graduārī, graduāt-, to take a degree, from Latin gradus, step; see grade.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin graduātus ("graduated"), from gradus ("step"). (Wiktionary)


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  • “That one of you girls will soon graduate from the Academy.”

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