American English

Definition of generalize verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    , NAmE//ˈdʒɛnrəˌlaɪz//
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they generalize
    he / she / it generalizes
    past simple generalized
    -ing form generalizing
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  1. 1[intransitive] generalize (from something) to use a particular set of facts or ideas in order to form an opinion that is considered valid for a different situation It would be foolish to generalize from a single example.
  2. 2[intransitive] generalize (about something) to make a general statement about something and not look at the details It is dangerous to generalize about the poor.
  3. 3[transitive, often passive] generalize something (to something) (formal) to apply a theory, idea, etc. to a wider group or situation than the original one These conclusions cannot be generalized to the whole country. We are now in a position to generalize the lessons we have learned.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: generalize