English

Definition of learn verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

      

    learn

     verb
    verb
    BrE BrE//lɜːn//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrn//
     
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they learn
    BrE BrE//lɜːn//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrn//
     
    he / she / it learns
    BrE BrE//lɜːnz//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrnz//
     
    past simple learnt
    BrE BrE//lɜːnt//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrnt//
     
    past participle learnt
    BrE BrE//lɜːnt//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrnt//
     
    past simple learned
    BrE BrE//lɜːnd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrnd//
     
    past participle learned
    BrE BrE//lɜːnd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//lɜːrnd//
     
    -ing form learning
    BrE BrE//ˈlɜːnɪŋ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈlɜːrnɪŋ//
     
    Teaching and learning
     
    jump to other results
  1. 1  [transitive, intransitive] to gain knowledge or skill by studying, from experience, from being taught, etc. learn something to learn a language/a musical instrument/a skill learn something from somebody/something I learned a lot from my father. learn something from doing something You can learn a great deal just from watching other players. learn (about something) She's very keen to learn about Japanese culture. The book is about how children learn. learn to do something He's learning to dance. learn how, what, etc… He’s still learning how to dance. Today we learnt how to use the new software. Vocabulary BuildingLearning learnHe’s learning Spanish/​to swim. studyShe studied chemistry for three years. revise (British English) (North American English) review)In this class we’ll revise/​review what we did last week. practise (British English (North American English practice)If you practise speaking English, you’ll soon improve. rehearseWe only had two weeks to rehearse the play. More Like This Verbs usually followed by infinitives afford, agree, appear, arrange, attempt, beg, choose, consent, decide, expect, fail, happen, hesitate, hope, intend, learn, manage, mean, neglect, offer, prepare, pretend, promise, refuse, swear, try, want, wishSee worksheet. See related entries: Teaching and learning
  2. 2  [intransitive, transitive] to become aware of something by hearing about it from somebody else synonym discover learn of/about something I learnt of her arrival from a close friend. learn (that)… We were very surprised to learn (that) she had got married again. learn who, what, etc… We only learned who the new teacher was a few days ago. learn something How did they react when they learned the news? it is learned that… It has been learned that 500 jobs are to be lost at the factory.
  3. 3  [transitive] learn something to study and repeat something in order to be able to remember it synonym memorize We have to learn one of Hamlet's speeches for school tomorrow.
  4. 4  [intransitive, transitive] to gradually change your attitudes about something so that you behave in a different way learn (from something) I'm sure she'll learn from her mistakes. learn (that)… He’ll just have to learn (that) he can’t always have his own way. learn to do something I soon learned not to ask too many questions.
  5. Word Origin Old English leornian ‘learn’ (in Middle English also ‘teach’), of West Germanic origin; related to German lernen, also to lore.Extra examples Children learn very quickly. He was eager to learn all she could teach him. I was surprised to learn that he was only 23. I’ve got a lot to learn, haven’t I? She learned from watching others. Some people never learn, do they? The children learn about art by painting. They soon learn that bad behaviour is a sure-fire way of getting attention. We first learned of the problem from her school. You still have a lot to learn. learning about art Did you ever learn any languages? Everyone learns in a slightly different way. He learned to ride when he was about three years old. He’ll just have to learn (that) he can’t always have his own way. I learned of her arrival from a close friend. I’ll need to learn how to use the new software. I’m sure she’ll learn from her mistakes. I’ve forgotten most of what I learned at school. It’s a bit overwhelming at first but don’t worry, you’ll soon learn. Most of the kids here are eager to learn. She’s still quite young and she’s got a lot to learn. She’s very interested in learning more about Japanese culture. We have to learn one of Hamlet’s speeches for school tomorrow. We were very surprised to learn that she had got married again. You can learn a great deal just from watching the other players. You’ll have to learn your lines by next week.Idioms
    know/learn/find something to your cost
     
    jump to other results
    to know something because of something unpleasant that has happened to you He's a ruthless businessman, as I know to my cost.
    learn (something) the hard way
     
    jump to other results
    to find out how to behave by learning from your mistakes or from unpleasant experiences, rather than from being told
    to learn what to do or not to do in the future because you have had a bad experience in the past
    show somebody/know/learn the ropes
     
    jump to other results
    (informal) to show somebody/know/learn how a particular job should be done
    used to express surprise at something new or unexpected you have been told
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: learn