The word constitutive describes an essential part of a whole, especially physical makeup. Without its constitutive engine, steering wheel, and tires, you don’t really have a car; it's just a box with seats.

Just like a government may be based on its constitution, a whole is based on its constitutive parts. Something that is constitutive may also be necessary for a whole to work correctly. Participate in a 24-hour dance-a-thon, and you’ll likely find your legs are constitutive to your success. Constitutive is one of those words that has both general and scientific uses; you might see other senses of the word in both chemistry and biology books.

Definitions of constitutive
  1. adjective
    constitutional in the structure of something (especially your physical makeup)
    synonyms: constituent, constitutional, organic
    basic and fundamental
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week