Meaning of “ought” - Learner’s Dictionary


modal verb us uk /ɔːt/
ought to do sth

B1 used to say or ask what is the correct or best thing to do:

We ought to tidy up before we go.
You ought to see a doctor.
He ought to have told her the truth.
Ought I to phone her?

More examples

ought to be/do sth

B2 used to say that you expect something to be true or that you expect something to happen:

She ought to be home by seven.
He ought to pass the exam this time.

(Definition of “ought” from the Cambridge Learner’s Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)