American English

Definition of consultation noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[uncountable] the act of discussing something with someone or with a group of people before making a decision about it a consultation document/paper/period/process acting in consultation with all the departments involved The decision was made after close consultation with local residents. Thesaurusdiscussionconversation dialogue talk debate consultation chat gossipThese are all words for an occasion when people talk about something.discussion a detailed conversation about something that is considered to be important:Discussions are still taking place between the two countries.conversation a talk, usually a private or informal one, involving two people or a small group; the activity of talking in this way:a telephone conversationdialogue conversations in a book, play, or movie:The novel has long descriptions and not much dialogue.A dialogue is also a formal discussion between two groups, especially when they are trying to solve a problem or end a dispute:The leaders engaged in a constructive dialogue about climate a conversation or discussion, often one about a problem or something important for the people involved:I had a long talk with my boss about my career prospects.debate a formal discussion of an issue at a public meeting or in Congress. In a debate, two or more speakers express opposing views and then there is often a vote on the issue:a debate over prison reformconsultation a formal discussion between groups of people before a decision is made about something:The proposal was based on extensive consultations with leading a friendly, informal conversation; informal talking:Could I have a quick chat with you?gossip talk about other people and their private lives, that is often unkind or not true:Office gossip can be nasty and cruel.Patterns (a) discussion/conversation/dialogue/talk/debate/consultation/chat/gossip about something a discussion/conversation/dialogue/debate/consultation on something in (close) discussion/conversation/dialogue/debate/consultation >with>somebody to have a discussion/conversation/dialogue/talk/debate/consultation/chat >with>somebody to hold a discussion/conversation/debate/consultation
  2. 2[countable] a formal meeting to discuss something extensive consultations between the two countries
  3. 3[countable] a meeting with an expert, such as a lawyer or doctor, to get advice or treatment A 30-minute consultation will cost $50. Thesaurusinterviewinterrogation audience consultationThese are all words for a meeting or occasion when someone is asked for information, opinions, or advice.interview a formal meeting at which someone is asked questions, for example, to see if they are suitable for a particular job or course of study, or in order to find out their opinions about something:a job interviewinterrogation the process of asking someone a lot of questions, especially in an aggressive way, in order to get information; an occasion on which this is done:He confessed after four days of interrogation.audience a formal meeting with an important person:The Pope granted her a private audience.consultation a meeting with an expert, such as a lawyer or doctor, to get advice or treatment:A 30-minute consultation will cost $50.Patterns an in-depth interview/consultation a police interview/interrogation to have/request a(n) interview/audience/consultation >with>somebody to give/grant somebody a(n) interview/audience/consultation to carry out/conduct an interview/interrogation
  4. 4[uncountable] the act of looking for information in a book, etc. There is a large collection of texts available for consultation on-screen.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: consultation