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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 instruction:


Instruction is a member of the word family instruct, 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 instruction

What does instruction mean as a name of something?

Instruction is one of the top 1000 most common nouns in the English language.

noun - plural: instructions

  1. a message describing how something is to be done
    • lexical domain: Communicative Processes - nouns denoting communicative processes and contents
    • synonym of instruction: direction
    • more generic terms: content / message / subject matter / substance = what a communication that is about something is about
    • more specific terms:
      • rule = any one of a systematic body of regulations defining the way of life of members of a religious order
      • prescript / rule = prescribed guide for conduct or action
      • rubric = directions for the conduct of Christian church services
      • misdirection = incorrect directions or instructions
      • name and address / destination / address = written directions for finding some location
      • markup = detailed stylistic instructions for typesetting something that is to be printed
      • prescription = directions prescribed beforehand
      • formula / recipe = directions for making something
      • rule = directions that define the way a game or sport is to be conducted
      • stage direction = an instruction written as part of the script of a play
      • style = editorial directions to be followed in spelling and punctuation and capitalization and typographical display
      • system command = a computer user's instruction (not part of a program) that calls for action by the computer's executive program
  2. the activities of educating or instructing; activities that impart knowledge or skill
  3. the profession of a teacher
  4. (computer science) a line of code written as part of a computer program
    • domain: computer science / computing
    • lexical domain: Communicative Processes - nouns denoting communicative processes and contents
    • synonyms of instruction: command / program line / statement
    • more generic terms: code / computer code = the symbolic arrangement of data or instructions in a computer program or the set of such instructions
    • more specific terms:
      • call = an instruction that interrupts the program being executed
      • command line = commands that a user types in order to run an application
      • link = an instruction that connects one part of a program or an element on a list to another program or list
      • macro instruction / macro = a single computer instruction that results in a series of instructions in machine language
      • system error = an instruction that is either not recognized by an operating system or is in violation of the procedural rules
      • toggle = any instruction that works first one way and then the other
    • part of: computer program / computer programme / program / programme = a sequence of instructions that a computer can interpret and execute

Alternative definition of the noun instruction


  1. [uncountable] The act of instructing, teaching, or furnishing with information or knowledge.
  2. [countable] An instance of the information or knowledge so furnished.
  3. [countable] An order or command.
  4. [computing] A single operation of a processor defined by an instruction set architecture.

Specialised definition of the noun instruction

Glossary of sports

something which explains how something is to be done or used (2008. Dictionary of Leisure, Travel and Tourism. Third edition. A&C Black Publishers Ltd)


Instruction were an alternative rock band that formed in 2002 in Brooklyn, New York. The band consisted of lead vocalist Arthur Shepherd, bassist Adam Marino, lead guitarist Tom Capone and drummer Ti Kreck.


  1. Instruction: In computer science, an instruction is a single operation of a processor defined by an instruction set architecture. In a broader sense, an "instruction" may be any representation of an element of an executable program, such as a bytecode.
  2. Instruction: A textual description of what is to be done in this step.

Phrases with Instruction

Phrases starting with the word Instruction:

  1. Instruction set
  2. instruction book
  3. instruction manual
  4. instruction execution

Phrases ending with the word Instruction:

  1. macro instruction
  2. Machine Instruction
  3. course of instruction
  4. catechetical instruction
  5. supervisor call instruction

Other phrases containing the word Instruction:

  1. complex instruction set computer
  2. reduced instruction set computer
  3. complex instruction set computing
  4. reduced instruction set computing

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Instruction

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

Google previewFCS Computer Hardware & Software L3 (2008)

An instruction is a single operation that a processor performs. We can answer this question...

Google previewProcessing Instruction and Discourse (2011)

by Alessandro Benati, James F. Lee

Processing Instruction is a psycholinguistic and input-based approach to grammar instruction based on VanPatten's input processing model. We dealt with this model extensively in Chapter 1. Of concern to models of input processing is how ...

Google previewEarly Childhood Curriculum for All Learners (2014)

Integrating Play and Literacy Activities by Ann M. Selmi, Raymond J. Gallagher, Eugenia R. Mora-Flores

Differentiated instruction is a philosophy of teaching that recognizes children's individual differences in three specific, related areas of learning:...

Google previewTransactions of the ... Annual Meeting of the Western Literary Institute, and College of Professional Teachers (1837)

Instruction means the impartment of elementary knowledge to children, from the first dawn of reason till they arrive at that state of maturity, when they can be safely trusted from home, and put into the hand of masters, who can develop, polish, ...

Google previewModels for Improving and Optimizing Online and Blended Learning in Higher Education (2014)

by Keengwe, Jared

are developed based on prior knowledge, experiences, and personal interests, the instruction is a form of differentiation.

Google previewEncyclopedia of Education and Human Development (2015)

by Stephen J. Farenga, Immanuel Ness

Arguably, instruction is the key process in education. At the heart of educational institutions, it is the process around which schools are formed and educational legislation passed. Ironically, instruction simultaneously represents both the most ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Library and Information Science, Second Edition - (2003)

by Miriam Drake

Historically, bibliographic instruction (BI) or library instruction (LI) has been a facet of the librarian's job, but today the teaching of information literacy concepts and skills has become a primary task for a growing number of librarians. The volume ...

Google previewDictionary of Computer Science, Engineering and Technology (2000)

by Philip A. Laplante

See instruction prefetch, branch prediction. (2) a rooted spanning tree in a directed graph, such as the root that has a path in the tree to each vertex. branching construct a construct in a program which selects one of several potential execution ...

Google previewComprehensive Dictionary of Electrical Engineering (1999)

by Phillip A. Laplante

instruction field mentations, the module that fetches instructions from memory, usually in conjunction with a bus interface unit, and prepares them for subsequent decoding and execution by one or more execution units. instruction field a portion ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Educational Psychology (2008)

by Neil J. Salkind

Direct instruction has at least two meanings. The first meaning refers to the generic behavioral features of explicit teaching in which teachers demonstrate a performance, guide students as they attempt to perform, and continue student/ teacher ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Instruction

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Photos about Instruction

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Small photo of Worker checking instruction before furniture installation. Professional home help theme.Small photo of LAS VEGAS, CA, USA - JUN 15, 2018: Medical Doctor office instruction of hands hygiene.Small photo of Medium of instruction for young children.Small photo of Instruction Document Guidebook Handbook Help ConceptSmall photo of Medium of instruction for young children.Small photo of Medium of instruction for young children.Small photo of Woman reading instruction on clothing label, closeup More...

Video language resources about Instruction

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See also the pronunciation examples of Instruction!

Sign language

Sign Language Numbers 100 and up Instruction Video

Quotes about Instruction

Report writing, like motor-car driving and love-making, is one of those activities which almost every Englishman thinks he can do well without instruction. The results are of course usually abominable. (Tom Margerison)
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Scrabble value of I1N1S1T1R1U1C3T1I1O1N1

The value of this 11-letter word is 13 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

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