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

  • n. An outline or a summary of the main points of a text, lecture, or course of study.
  • n. Law A short statement preceding a report on an adjudged case and containing a summary of the court's rulings on each point involved.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A summary of topics which will be covered during an academic course, or a text or lecture.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A compendium containing the heads of a discourse, and the like; an abstract.
  • n. The headnote of a reported case; the brief statement of the points of law determined prefixed to a reported case. The opinion controls the syllabus, the latter being merely explanatory of the former.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A compendium containing the heads of a discourse, the main propositions of a course of lectures, etc.; an abstract; a table of statements contained in any writing, of a scheme of lessons, or the like.
  • n. In the Roman Catholic Church, a summary statement and enumeration of the points decided by an act or decree of ecclesiastical authority; specifically, a catalogue formulating eighty heresies condemned by Pope Pius IX. in 1864, annexed to the encyclical letter Quanta Cura. See the quotation.
  • n. Synonyms Compendium, Epitome. See abridgment.

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

  • n. an integrated course of academic studies


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

Medieval Latin, probably alteration (influenced by Greek sullambanein, to put together) of Latin sillybus, parchment label, from Greek sillubos.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Late Latin syllabus ("list"), a misreading of sittybis or sillybis (ablative plural) in a 1470s edition of Cicero's "Ad Atticum" iv.5 and 8. This misprint of sittybis or sillybis as syllabis was later wrongly related to the Greek noun συλλαβή "syllable", but is actually from Ancient Greek σιττύβα (sittyba, "parchment label, table of contents") of unknown origin.


  • And it may sound like an easy-A elective, but the syllabus is actually pretty rigorous.

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  • Another issue I have with my syllabus is the fact that I've already changed an assignment due date once and am thinking of changing it again (all for good reasons), and I'm worried the students will think I'm a flake.

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  • In British English, syllabus is often associated with particular subjects (language, mathematics, sciences) whereas curriculum collocates with national, core … and hidden (more on that one later).

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  • The syllabus is one aspect of this but curriculum is so so much more.

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  • A structural syllabus is a form-based syllabus, organized primarily according to criteria of structural complexity.

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  • The goal we found out is to translate a fancy routine story into a simple routine with the same story in syllabus steps.

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  • The syllabus from the 1994 “Current Issues in Racism and the Law” course is particularly instructive.

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  • Someone left a link in a comment to a site that explores the complicated issue of the origin of the word syllabus and the related issue of what its plural form should be.

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  • My syllabus is at the printers (I've only caught one error so far); my first lecture is mostly written; the blackboard site for the class has some rudimentary information.

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  • The traditional way for the other book stores in town to find out what's on Dr. Who's syllabus is to send someone into the competitor's store to copy down all the ISBNs for the required reading in his course.

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