Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “discriminate”

See all translations

discriminate

verb uk   /dɪˈskrɪm.ɪ.neɪt/ us  

discriminate verb (TREAT DIFFERENTLY)

C1 [I] to treat a person or particular group of people differently, especially in a worse way from the way in which you treat other people, because of their skin colour, sex, sexuality, etc.: She felt she had been discriminated against because of her age. In order to increase the number of female representatives, the selection committee decided to discriminate in favour of women for three years.

discriminate verb (SEE A DIFFERENCE)

C2 [I + adv/prep] formal to be able to see the difference between two things or people: Police dogs can discriminate between the different smells.
discriminatory
adjective uk   /-nə.tər.i/ us    /-nə.tɔːri/
discriminatory legislation/laws/practices
(Definition of discriminate from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of discriminate?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “discriminate” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

exercise

physical activity that you do to make your body strong and healthy

Word of the Day

Byronic, Orwellian and Darwinian: adjectives from names.

by Liz Walter,
April 15, 2015
Becoming an adjective is a strange kind of memorial, but it is often a sign of a person having had real influence on the world. Science is full of examples, from Hippocrates, the Greek medic born around 460 BC, who gave his name to the Hippocratic Oath still used by doctors today,

Read More 

bio-inspiration noun

April 13, 2015
the adoption of patterns and structures found in nature for the purposes of engineering, manufacturing, science, etc. The MIT researchers actually aren’t the only robotics team to turn to cheetahs for bio-inspiration.

Read More