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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun adjustment:


Adjustment is a member of the word family adjust, included in the Academic Word List by Dr. Averil Coxhead, which contains the 570 most frequent word families used in academic texts from a variety of subject areas, of interest for students that learn the words most needed to study at tertiary institutions.

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Definition of the noun adjustment

What does adjustment mean as a name of something?

noun - plural: adjustments

  1. making or becoming suitable; adjusting to circumstances
  2. the act of making something different (as e.g. the size of a garment)
    • lexical domain: Acts - nouns denoting acts or actions
    • synonyms of adjustment: alteration / modification
    • more generic word: change = the action of changing something
    • more specific words:
      • loosening / laxation = the act of making something less tight
      • tightening = the act of making something tighter
      • accommodation = the automatic adjustment in focal length of the natural lens of the eye
      • adaptation = the responsive adjustment of a sense organ (as the eye) to varying conditions
      • tune = the adjustment of a radio receiver or other circuit to a required frequency
  3. the act of adjusting something to match a standard
    • lexical domain: Acts - nouns denoting acts or actions
    • synonyms of adjustment: readjustment / registration
    • more generic words: calibration / standardisation / standardization = the act of checking or adjusting (by comparison with a standard) the accuracy of a measuring instrument
    • more specific words:
      • alignment = the act of adjusting or aligning the parts of a device in relation to each other
      • collimation = the accurate adjustment of the line of sight of a telescope
      • temperament = an adjustment of the intervals (as in tuning a keyboard instrument) so that the scale can be used to play in different keys
      • tune-up = adjustments made to an engine to improve its performance
      • synchronisation / synchronization / synchronising / synchronizing = an adjustment that causes something to occur or recur in unison
      • voicing = the act of adjusting an organ pipe (or wind instrument) so that it conforms to the standards of tone and pitch and color
  4. the process of adapting to something (such as environmental conditions)
  5. an amount added or deducted on the basis of qualifying circumstances
    • lexical domain: Possessions - nouns denoting possession and transfer of possession
    • synonym of adjustment: allowance
    • more generic word: recompense = payment or reward
    • more specific terms:
      • cost-of-living allowance = an allowance for changes in the consumer price index
      • depreciation allowance = an allowance for loss due to depreciation
      • deduction / discount = an amount or percentage deducted
      • seasonal adjustment = a statistical adjustment made to accommodate predictable fluctuations as a function of the season of the year
      • tare = an adjustment made for the weight of the packaging in order to determine the net weight of the goods

Alternative definition of the noun adjustment


  1. a small change; a minor correction; a modification
  2. The behavioural process of balancing conflicting needs, or needs against obstacles in the environment.


  1. "Adjustment" a.k.a. "The Adjustment Bureau" is a 2011 American romantic science fiction thriller film loosely based on the Philip K. Dick short story, "Adjustment Team". The film was written and directed by George Nolfi and stars Matt Damon and Emily Blunt. The cast also includes Anthony Mackie, John Slattery, Michael Kelly, and Terence Stamp.
  2. "Adjustment" is an award-nominated short film, written and directed by Ian Mackinnon.


Adjustment: In psychology, adjustment refers to the behavioural process of balancing conflicting needs, or needs against obstacles in the environment. Humans and animals regularly do this, for example, when they are stimulated by their physiological state to seek food, they eat to reduce their hunger and thus adjust to the hunger stimulus. Adjustment disorder occurs when there is an inability to make a normal adjustment to some need or stress in the environment.

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Adjustment

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewTax Guide for Small Business (1985)

Some of these adjustments are briefly discussed next. ACE depreciation. The adjustment is the excess of AMT depreciation over ACE depreciation. If ACE depreciation exceeds AMT depreciation, the adjustment is a negative amount. The ADS ...



Adjustment is the process of finding and adopting modes of behaviour suitable to the environment or the changes in the environment. Warren (1934): Adjustment refers to any operation whereby an organism.

Google previewA Selection of ... Internal Revenue Service Tax Information Publications (1989)

The adjustment is the difference between the total depreciation for all property for alternative minimum tax purposes and the total depreciation for regular income tax purposes. The effect of using two different types of depreciation (one for ...

Google previewThe Scheduled Castes in India (2008)

by Sarajit Kumar Chatterjee

Adjustment is the outcome of human attempts to deal with stress and meet the needs. It is a continuous process to maintain harmonious relationship with the environment. Thus adjustment is a process of interaction between oneself and one's ...

Google previewInternal Revenue Service Tax Information Publications


The adjustment is the difference between the total depreciation for all property for alternative minimum tax purposes and the total depreciation for regular income tax purposes. The effect of using two different types of depreciation (one for ...

Google previewPrinciples of Knowledge Representation and Reasoning (1994)

Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference (KR'94), Bonn, Germany, May 24-27, 1994 by Jon Doyle, Erik Sandewall

Intuitively, an adjustment is a transmutation which is commanded by the principle of minimal change, that is, an OCF is changed or disturbed 'as little as necessary' so as to accept the information with the desired degree of acceptance. In other ...

Google previewe-Study Guide for: Public Speaking by Michael Osborn, ISBN 9780205584567 (2012)

by Cram101 Textbook Reviews

Adjustment means regulating, adapting orsettlingin avariety of contexts: Adjustment has several meanings; many relate to insurance, contracts, or the resolution of disputes. In Engineering, Mathematics and Geodesy, Adjustment ...

Google previewLibrary and Information Center Management, 8th Edition (2012)

by Robert D. Stueart, Barbara B. Moran, Claudia J. Morner

mutual adjustment means informal communication. Because it is so simple, mutual adjustment is the coordinating mechanism used in the simplest of organizations, such as a small library with few employees. No elaborate hierarchy is ...

Google previewCanada Among Nations 1986 (1987)

Talking Trade by Brian Tomlin, Maureen Appel Molot

Narrowly defined, industrial adjustment means changes in the shares of output and employment of different sectors or industries within an economy. In a broader sense, industrial adjustment is also characterized by changes in the structure of ...

Google previewContemporary Theories and Systems in Psychology (2012)

by Benjamin B. Wolman

Since adjustment is the main problem of functionalism, Angell and the other functionalists have attached great importance to the process of modification of behavior. This led to an increased interest in habit formation and learning theory, which ...

Google previewThe Gist of NCERT - INDIAN ECONOMY

by Editorial Board

Stabilization is a gradual, multi-step process while structural adjustment is a quick adaptation process (b) Structural adjustment is a gradual multi-step process while stabilization is a quick adaptation process (c) Stabilization and structural ...

Google previewResearch Administration and Management (2008)

by Elliott C. Kulakowski, Lynne U. Chronister

The “Bruce Case” Rule The basis for most determinations of equitable adjustment is the series of decisions involving the Bruce Construction Company. The rule emanating from these cases is that the proper measure of value of an equitable ...

Google previewOperator, organizational, direct support, general support, and depot maintenance manual (1989)

compressor, reciprocating, air, gasoline engine, 15 cfm, 175 psi, receiver mounted (Champion pneumatic model OEG-458-ENG-1), FSN 4310-861-9818, receiver mounted (Champion pneumatic model OEG-458-ENG-2) .... by United States. Dept. of the Army

Proper adjustment is a deflection 3/4 inch midway between pulleys. Replace a worn, frayed or cracked belt. 3-59 g LEVEL GAGE.

Google previewThe European Union and the South (2002)

Relations with Developing Countries by Marjorie Lister

Structural adjustment means reducing demand in the economy—often at the expense of the poor— while increasing production, particularly for export. Other models, notably the UN Economic Commission for Africa's 1989 African Alternative ...

Google previewLubkin's Chronic Illness (2014)

by Fngna Associate Dean and Professor Fay W Whitney School of Nursing University of Wyoming Laramie Wyoming Pamala D Larsen

Adjustment refers to the changes in life that are made continuously when one has a chronic illness. Adjustment is not static, but dynamic. What is interesting about the terms “adaptation” and “adjustment” is that psychologists describe these ...

Google previewbetter tiremen (1921)

by Tufford

"Deferred adjustment" is an adjustment set aside awaiting decision or instructions from the customer. An "unwarranted" adjustment is the replacing of a tire which is found later to be abused, its condition having been overlooked in the first ...

Google previewWhen is Fiscal Adjustment an Illusion? (1999)

by William Russell Easterly

Fiscal adjustment is an illusion when it lowers the budget deficit or public debt but leaves government net worth unchanged. Conventional measures of the deficit mostly capture the change in explicit government liabilities (debt), and mostly do ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Stress: A-D (2000)

The adjustment disorders are classified according to the predominant clinical symptoms. Six subtypes are identified and coded in DSM-IV. Three define discrete symptomatic presentations (depressed mood, anxious mood, disturbance of ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Clinical Child and Pediatric Psychology (2012)

by Thomas H. Ollendick, Carolyn S. Schroeder

Adjustment Disorders Reschly, D. J. (1982). Assessing mild mental retardation: The influence of adaptive behavior, socioeconomic status, and prospects for nonbiased assessment. In C. R. Reynolds & T. B. Gutkin (Eds.), The handbook of ...

Google previewThe Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology (2010)

by Irving B. Weiner, W. Edward Craighead

School adjustment is the degree of school acculturation required or adaptations necessitated for maximizing the educational fit between students' unique characteristics and the distinct nature and requirements of learning environments .

Google previewEncyclopedia of Depression [2 volumes] (2010)

by Linda Wasmer Andrews

ADJUSTMENT DISORDER WITH DEPRESSED MOOD. An adjustment disorder is a psychological response to a stressful situation that leads to more distress than would normally be expected or causes problems in the person's work, school, ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Industrial and Organizational Psychology (2006)

by Steven G. Rogelberg

international adjustment variables), directly relates to expatriate success. The other type, distal predictors, indirectly affects expatriate success through proximal predictors. Proximal Predictors Research on ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Stress, Three-Volume Set (2000)

The adjustment disorders are classified according to the predominant clinical symptoms. Six subtypes are identified and coded in DSM-IV. Three define discrete symptomatic presentations (depressed mood, anxious mood, disturbance of ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Educational Reform and Dissent (2010)

by Thomas C. Hunt, Thomas J. Lasley, II

While the life adjustment project drew upon progressive antecedents like the Cardinal Principles, as a standalone movement, it gained its first expression in the post– World War II era.

Google previewThe Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Adulthood and Aging, 3 Volume Set (2016)

by Susan Krauss Whitbourne

Future research should be sensitive to these differences in dispositional and situational goal adjustment capacities to further elucidate the relationship between the two. Finally, research should begin to investigate how goal adjustment ...

Google previewHistorical Dictionary of the Great Depression, 1929-1940 (2001)

by James Stuart Olson

AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT ACT OF 1938 3 Jones of Texas, Congress passed the Agricultural Adjustment Act in May 1933, during...

Henry Wallace established the Agricultural Adjustment Administration* (AAA) to administer the program.

Google previewEncyclopedia of Geography (2010)

by Barney Warf

Repercussions Beyond the shortcomings of reforms, there are also important unforeseen repercussions resulting from structural adjustment. An original adjustment aim, especially in African cases, was to end the “urban bias” in national ...

Google previewThe International Encyclopedia of Depression (2009)

by Rick E. Ingram, PhD

Adjustment disorder is characterized by a psychological response to an identifiable stressor or stressors that result in clinically significant distress or functional impairment (American Psychiatric Association [APA], 2000). Though this diagnosis ...

Google previewDictionary of Sociology (1944)

by Henry Pratt Fairchild

action, social adjustment, vocational social pant in turn responds to the action of a predecessor and stimulates another par·ticipant. x.s. action, social. Cf. social action. action pattern. An arrangement of social actions (q.v.) in social space and/ or ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Adjustment

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Small photo of Side mirror adjustment stick buttonSmall photo of Musical center adjustment knobs on the aluminum backgroundSmall photo of Level adjustment development efficiency improvementSmall photo of final gown adjustmentSmall photo of Room temperature adjustment knobSmall photo of Manual adjustment of electric power of heating elements.Small photo of Manual adjustment of the power of heating elements More...

Video language resources about Adjustment

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See also the pronunciation examples of Adjustment!

Quotes about Adjustment

Insanity -- a perfectly rational adjustment to an insane world. (R. D. Lang)
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Scrabble value of A1D2J8U1S1T1M3E1N1T1

The value of this 10-letter word is 20 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

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