Meaning of “formative” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"formative" in British English

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uk /ˈfɔː.mə.tɪv/ us /ˈfɔːr.mə.t̬ɪv/ formal

relating to the time when someone or something is starting to develop in character:

She spent her formative years in Africa.
a formative experience
a formative period

specialized education A formative assessment happens while a student is being taught about a subject, rather than at the end of a year or unit of work, in order to check their progress:

Continual formative assessment of student understanding through observation, student questioning, and written assignments helps teachers decide how well students are doing.

(Definition of “formative” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"formative" in American English

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formativeadjective [ not gradable ]

us /ˈfɔr·mə·t̬ɪv/

developing and not yet completely formed:

the formative years of adolescence

(Definition of “formative” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)