English

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

     

    stimulus

     noun
    noun
    BrE BrE//ˈstɪmjələs//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstɪmjələs//
     
    (pl. stimuli
    BrE BrE//ˈstɪmjəlaɪ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstɪmjəlaɪ//
     
    )
    stimulus (to/for something) | stimulus (to do something) Cell biology
     
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  1. 1[usually singular] something that helps somebody/something to develop better or more quickly Books provide children with ideas and a stimulus for play. The new tax laws should act as a stimulus to exports.
  2. 2something that produces a reaction in a human, an animal or a plant sensory/verbal/visual stimuli The animals were conditioned to respond to auditory stimuli (= sounds). See related entries: Cell biology
  3. Word Origin late 17th cent.: from Latin, ‘goad, spur, incentive’.Extra examples Congress passed the President’s economic stimulus package. The initial stimulus came from a letter in the newspaper. The pupils dilate in response to chemical stimuli. The very act of lying down in bed should provide a strong stimulus for sleep. a response to a stimulus plant growth responses to environmental stimuli He stressed the value of public investment as a stimulus to growth. The research provided the stimulus for improvements in public libraries.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: stimulus