Definition of class noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

    in education
  1. 1  [countable + singular or plural verb] a group of students who are taught together We were in the same class at school. She is the youngest in her class. He came top of the class. The whole class was/were told to stay behind after school. See related entries: Teaching and learning, People in schools, School life
  2. 2  [countable, uncountable] an occasion when a group of students meets to be taught synonym lesson I was late for a class. See me after class. She works hard in class (= during the class). I have a history class at 9 o'clock. CollocationsEducationLearning acquire/​get/​lack (an) education/​training/(British English) (some) qualifications receive/​provide somebody with training/​tuition develop/​design/​plan a curriculum/(especially British English) course/(North American English) program/​syllabus give/​go to/​attend a class/​lesson/​lecture/​seminar hold/​run/​conduct a class/​seminar/​workshop sign up for/​take a course/​classes/​lessonsSchool go to/​start preschool/​kindergarten/​nursery school be in the first, second, etc. (North American English) grade/(especially British English) year (at school) study/​take/​drop history/​chemistry/​German, etc. (British English) leave/​finish/​drop out of/ (North American English) quit school (North American English) graduate high school/​collegeProblems at school be the victim/​target of bullying (British English) play truant from/ (both British English, informal) bunk off/​skive off school (= not go to school when you should) (both especially North American English) skip/​cut class/​school (British English) cheat in/(North American English) cheat on an exam/​a test get/​be given a detention (for doing something) be expelled from/​be suspended from schoolWork and exams do your homework/(British English) revision/​a project on something work on/​write/​do/​submit an essay/​a dissertation/​a thesis/​an assignment/(North American English) a paper finish/​complete your dissertation/​thesis/​studies/​coursework hand in/ (North American English) turn in your homework/​essay/​assignment/​paper study/​prepare/ (British English) revise/ (North American English) review/ (North American English, informal) cram for a test/​an exam take/ (both British English) do/​sit a test/​an exam (especially British English) mark/ (especially North American English) grade homework/​a test (British English) do well in/ (North American English) do well on/ (informal, especially North American English) ace a test/​an exam pass/​fail/ (informal, especially North American English) flunk a test/​an exam/​a class/​a course/​a subjectUniversity apply to/​get into/​go to/​start college/(British English) university leave/​graduate from law school/​college/(British English) university (with a degree in computer science) study for/​take/ (British English) do/​complete a law degree/​a degree in physics (both North American English) major/​minor in biology/​philosophy earn/​receive/​be awarded/​get/​have/​hold a master’s degree/​a bachelor’s degree/​a PhD in economics See related entries: Teaching and learning, School life
  3. 3  [countable] (also classes [plural]) a series of classes on a particular subject synonym course I've been taking classes in pottery. Are you still doing your French evening class?
  4. 4[countable + singular or plural verb] (especially North American English) a group of students who finish their studies at school, college or university in a particular year the class of 2008 See related entries: Teaching and learning
  5. in society
  6. 5  [countable + singular or plural verb] one of the groups of people in a society that are thought of as being at the same social or economic level the working/middle/upper class The party tries to appeal to all classes of society. the professional classes See related entries: Belonging to society
  7. 6  [uncountable] the way that people are divided into different social and economic groups differences of class, race or gender the class system a society in which class is more important than ability
  8. group of people/animals
  9. 7  [countable] a group of people, animals or things that have similar characteristics or qualities It was good accommodation for a hotel of this class. different classes of drugs Dickens was in a different class from (= was much better than) most of his contemporaries. As a jazz singer she's in a class of her own (= better than most others). see also first-class, high-class, low-class, second-class See related entries: Groups of animals
  10. skill/style
  11. 8  [uncountable] an elegant quality or a high level of skill that is impressive She has class all right—she looks like a model. There's a real touch of class about this team.
  12. in train/plane
  13. 9  [countable] (especially in compounds) each of several different levels of comfort that are available to travellers in a plane, etc. He always travels business class. The first-class compartment is situated at the front of the train. see also business class, economy class syndrome, first class, second-class, third-class, tourist class
  14. of university degree
  15. 10[countable] (especially in compounds) one of the levels of achievement in a British university degree exam a first-/second-/third-class degree
  16. biology
  17. 11[countable] a group into which animals, plants, etc. that have similar characteristics are divided, below a phylum compare family, genus, species Wordfinderbreed, class, classification, genus, hybrid, kingdom, order, phylum, species, taxonomy See related entries: Groups of animals
  18. Word Originmid 16th cent. (in sense (1)): from Latin classis ‘a division of the Roman people, a grade, or a class of pupils’. Wordfindercivil rights, class, conform, convention, culture, custom, elite, equality, outsider, societyExtra examples He sat at the back of the class. He’s taking classes in pottery. Membership of gardening clubs is drawn from all social classes. She came top of the class in English. She has real class. She’s going to evening classes in Italian. She’s got real class. The college offers classes in many subjects. The institute holds evening classes throughout the year. The musical entertainment added a touch of class to the occasion. These writers form a distinct class in Russian literature. We’ll start the exercise in class and you can finish it for homework. Which history class are you in? Who’s taking the class today? a player of great class a rare class of butterflies a rare class of neurological diseases sections of the working class topics being discussed at the breakfast tables of the chattering classes A lot of British comedy is based on class differences. A real parquet floor will add a touch of class to the room. As a jazz singer she’s in a class of her own. Dickens was in a different class from most of his contemporaries. Do you consider yourself to be middle class? He finished top of the class. He was late for class again. Her sister is in my class. His ideas had an appeal among the wealthy, professional classes. I have an English class at 11. I’m taking a management class this semester. I’m taking night classes in art appreciation. It is the most reliable model in its class. It was an age in which all classes of society were expanding. It was pretty cheap for this class of hotel. Middle-class people will be hit hardest by these tax rises. Please see me after class. She works hard in class The college runs specialist language classes. The old class system is not appropriate in a modern age. The ruling class won’t give up their position without a fight. The upper classes have no automatic right to rule. The whole class was told to stay behind after school. There are several distinct classes of drugs. There’s a real touch of class about this team. They have devoted themselves to the class struggle. the freshman/​sophomore/​junior/​senior classIdioms (British English, usually disapproving) the people in society who like to give their opinions on political or social issues Constitutional reform is popular among the chattering classes.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: class