change Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “change” in the English Dictionary

"change" in British English

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changeverb

uk   us   /tʃeɪndʒ/
  • change verb (BECOME DIFFERENT)

A1 [T] to exchange one thing for another thing, ​especially of a ​similartype: She's just changed jobs. Let's change the ​subject (= ​talk about something different).A2 [I or T] to make or ​become different: I ​almost didn't ​recognize her - she'd changed so much. That was 20 ​years ago and things have changed since then. Nothing changes, does it - I've been away two ​years and the ​office still ​looksexactly the same. People have changed ​theirdiets a lot over the past few ​years. I'm going to change my ​hairstyle.B1 [I or T] UK (US exchange) to take something you have ​bought back to a ​shop and exchange it for something ​else: I had to change those ​trousers I ​bought for (= take them back to the ​shop in ​order to get) a ​biggerpair.change your mind B1 to ​form a new ​opinion or make a new ​decision about something that is different from ​yourold one: If you change ​yourmind about coming ​tonight, just give me a ​call. When I first ​met him I didn't like him but I've changed my ​mind.change for the better to ​improve: Her ​attitude has ​definitely changed for the ​better since she ​started this new ​job.change your ways to ​improve the ​badparts of ​yourbehaviour: If he ​wants to ​carry on ​living here, he's going to have to change his ​ways and ​learn to be a ​bit less ​messy.

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  • change verb (TRANSPORT)

A2 [I or T] to get off a ​train, ​bus, etc. and ​catch another in ​order to ​continue a ​journey: I had to change (​trains) ​twice to get there. Change at Peterborough for York.

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  • change verb (MONEY)

A2 [T] to get or give ​money in exchange for ​money, either because you ​want it in ​smallerunits, or because you ​want the same ​value in ​foreignmoney: Could you change a £10 ​note (for two fives), ​please? Could you change a £5 ​note for me? I need to change my ​dollars for/intoEnglishmoney.

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  • change verb (CLOTHES/BEDS)

A2 [I or T] to ​remove one set of ​clothes and put a different set on yourself or a ​youngchild, ​especially a ​baby, or to ​removedirtysheets from a ​bed and put ​cleanones on it: You don't need to change - you ​lookgreat as you are. I'll just change into (= get ​dressed in) something a ​bitsmarter. Give me five ​minutes to change out of (= ​remove) my ​workclothes and I'll come out with you. How often do you ​think he changes his ​shirt? Could you change the baby (= the baby's nappy)? I've changed the sheets/the bed (= the ​sheets on the ​bed) in the ​guestroom.

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  • change verb (WIND/SEA)

[I] When the ​wind or the tide (= the ​rise and ​fall of the ​sea) changes, it ​starts to ​move in a different ​direction: The ​tide is ​starting to change.
  • change verb (SPEED)

[I or T] (US usually shift) to put a ​vehicle into a different gear, usually in ​order to change the ​speed at which it is ​moving: to change gear I changed into fourth (​gear).UK Change down to go round the ​corner.

changenoun

uk   us   /tʃeɪndʒ/
  • change noun (BECOMING DIFFERENT)

A2 [C or U] the ​act of ​becoming different, or the ​result of something ​becoming different: Let me ​know if there's any change in the ​situation. We're ​living in a ​time of ​great change. We need a change ofgovernment. a change inlifestyle They've made a lot of changes to the ​house. The new ​management will make fundamental/​radical/​sweeping changes (= do things in a very different way).B1 [S] something that is ​pleasant or ​interesting because it is ​unusual or new: It's ​nice to ​see her ​smile for a change. "Shall we we ​eat in the ​garden?" "Why not - it'll make a change." We've always had a ​redcar - it's ​time we had a change!change of scene a new ​situation: She'd been with the same ​company for too many ​years and ​felt she ​needed a change of ​scene, so she ​applied for a ​job as a ​stagemanager.

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  • change noun (MONEY)

A2 [U] money in the ​form of ​coinsrather than ​notes: She gave me €5 in change. My ​dad always used to ​carry a lot of loose/​small change (= ​coins) in his ​pocket. [U] smallerunits of ​money given in exchange for ​largerunits of the same ​amount: Do you have change for a 20-dollar ​bill?A2 [U] the ​money that is ​returned to someone who has ​paid for something that ​costs less than the ​amount that they gave: I ​think you've given me the wrong change.

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  • change noun (CLOTHES)

[C] the ​action of putting on different ​clothes: She did a ​quick change before going on TV.a change of clothes A2 a set of ​clothes as well as the ​ones that you are ​wearing: You'll need a change of ​clothes if you're ​stayingovernight.
(Definition of change from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"change" in American English

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changeverb

 us   /tʃeɪndʒ/
  • change verb (BECOME DIFFERENT)

[I/T] to make or ​become different, or to do, use, or get one thing in ​place of another thing: [T] I’ve changed ​jobstwice in the past ten ​years. [T] I changed my ​hairstyle – do you like it? [I] Attitudes about ​lots of things changed during the 1960s. [I] It’s ​surprising how ​fastkids change during ​theirteenyears. [I/T] To change over from one thing to something ​else is to ​stop doing or using one thing and to ​start doing or using another: [I] We just changed from ​oilheat to ​gas.
  • change verb (CLOTHES/BEDS)

[I/T] to ​remove one set of ​clothes and put a different set on yourself or someone ​else, such as a ​baby, or to ​removedirtysheets from a ​bed and put ​cleanones on it: [I] I’ll just change into (= put on) something a little ​dressier. [T] Could you change the ​baby/the baby’s ​diaper (= put on a ​clean one)? [T] I changed the ​sheets/the ​bed (= the ​sheets on the ​bed) in the ​guestroom.
  • change verb (MONEY)

[T] to get or give ​money in ​exchange for ​money, either because you ​want it in ​smallerunits, or because you ​want the same ​value in ​foreignmoney: Can you change a $100 ​bill for me? I had to change some American ​money into pesetas before I ​arrived in Spain.
  • change verb (TRANSPORT)

[I/T] to get off an ​aircraft, ​train, ​bus, etc. and ​catch another in ​order to ​continue a ​trip: [T] I had to change ​planestwice to get there. [I] Change at Hartford for the ​train to Springfield.

changenoun

 us   /tʃeɪndʒ/
  • change noun (BECOMING DIFFERENT)

a change A change often refers to something ​unusual or new that is ​better or more ​pleasant than what ​existed before: We ​decided we ​needed a change, so we went to Florida for a ​couple of ​weeks. Why don’t we ​eat on the ​porch for a change?
  • change noun (MONEY)

[U] the ​difference in ​money, ​returned to the ​buyer, between what is ​paid for something and the ​lesseramount that it ​costs: It ​costs $17 and you gave me $20, so here’s ​your $3 change. [U] Change also refers to ​smallerunits of ​money whose ​totalvalue is ​equal to that of a ​largerunit: I need change for a $50 ​bill because I ​want to take a ​taxi. Do you have change for/of a ​dollar? [U] Change can refer to ​coinsrather than ​bills: Bring a lot of change for using the ​publictelephones.
  • change noun (CLOTHES/BEDS)

[C] a set of ​clothes that is ​additional to the ​clothes that you are ​wearing: Bring a change of ​clothes with you in ​case we ​stayovernight.
(Definition of change from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"change" in Business English

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changeverb

uk   us   /tʃeɪndʒ/
[I or T] to become or make something different, or to ​exchange something for something else: The ​company has changed considerably since I ​joined in 2005. She decided that it was ​time to change ​jobs.
[T] MONEY to ​exchange an ​amount of ​money for the same ​value in another ​currency: If you're unable to change ​money before you ​travel, most ​internationalairports will have a ​bureau de change.change sth into sth Here you'll ​find the best ​exchangerate for changing your US ​dollars into ​euros.
[T] MONEY to ​exchange a ​unit of ​money for ​coins or ​smallerunits of ​papermoney that ​add up to the same ​value: Could you change this twenty ​dollarbill for a ten and two fives? Many ​superstores have change ​machines where you can change your ​coins into ​banknotes.
[T] UK COMMERCE to ​return something you ​bought to a ​store and ​exchange it for something new, for ​example because it was ​damaged or the wrong ​size. A ​store changes an ​item when it ​agrees to give a ​customer a new ​item in ​exchange for one that is ​damaged, etc.: Some ​places won't ​let you change ​items without a ​receipt. The ​storeoffered to change the ​faultyitems or ​refund my ​money.
change hands to ​pass from one ​owner to another: More than 30 million ​shares changed ​hands in the first hour of ​business.

changenoun

uk   us   /tʃeɪndʒ/
[C or U] the ​process or ​result of making something different or becoming different: change to sth After making changes to its ​businessmodel, the company's ​netprofitsincreased by 22%.change in sth Owing to a change in ​policy, ​customers will now be ​charged a ​fee for early withdrawals.implement/make a change The new ​head of ​department is ​certain to make some changes.manage change One of the ​hardest aspects of being a ​topmanager is ​managing change. a fundamental/​major/significant change Please ​notify us of any change of ​address.
[U] MONEY coins used as ​money: Do you have any change for the ​parkingmeter?
[U] MONEY smallerunits of ​money or ​coins given in ​exchange for a larger ​unit of ​money that is ​worth the same ​amount: Can you make change for a 100 ​dollarbill?
[U] MONEY the ​money that is ​returned to you after you have ​paid for something that ​costs less than the ​amount you gave: I ​think the waiter gave me the wrong change.
(Definition of change from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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