department

A department is one section or part of a larger group, like a company or a school. The philosophy department of a university is just one of many, including English, math, and sociology.

Your local hospital has an emergency department, as well as surgical and mental health departments, or units. A company might have finance departments and hiring departments, and a town government has public works and fire departments. A "department store" is likewise split into sections. In each case, the departments specialize in one certain aspect of the organization. You can also say, "Making cookies is my department," if you're the person in your family who's the baking expert.

Definitions of department
1

n a specialized division of a large organization

“you'll find it in the hardware department
Synonyms:
section
Types:
show 35 types...
hide 35 types...
academic department
a division of a school that is responsible for a given subject
business department
a division of a business firm
personnel, personnel department, personnel office, staff office
the department responsible for hiring and training and placing employees and for setting policies for personnel management
government department
a department of government
payroll, payroll department
the department that determines the amounts of wage or salary due to each employee
security, security department
a department responsible for the security of the institution's property and workers
ministry
a government department under the direction of a minister
anthropology department, department of anthropology
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in anthropology
art department
the academic department responsible for teaching art and art appreciation
biology department, department of biology
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in biology
chemistry department, department of chemistry
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in chemistry
department of computer science
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in computer science
department of economics, economics department
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in economics
English department, department of English
the academic department responsible for teaching English and American literature
department of history, history department
the academic department responsible for teaching history
department of linguistics, linguistics department
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in linguistics
department of mathematics, mathematics department
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in mathematics
department of philosophy, philosophy department
the academic department responsible for teaching philosophy
department of physics, physics department
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in physics
department of music, music department
the academic department responsible for teaching music and music appreciation
department of psychology, psychology department
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in psychology
department of sociology, sociology department
the academic department responsible for teaching and research in sociology
advertising department, advertising division
the division of a business that is responsible for advertising
editorial department
the department of a publishing business that edits material for publication
parts department
the division of a business (e.g. a service garage) that sells replacement parts
building department, plant department
the division of a business responsible for building and maintaining the physical plant
purchasing department
the division of a business that is responsible for purchases
sales department, sales division, sales force
the division of a business that is responsible for selling products or services
service department
the division of a business that provides customer services
treasury
the government department responsible for collecting and managing and spending public revenues
department of local government, local department
a permanent department created to perform the work of a local government
Special Branch
a government police department dealing with political security
State Department
a department of government in one of the 50 states
department of the federal government, federal department, federal office
a department of the federal government of the United States
admiralty
the department in charge of the navy (as in Great Britain)
Type of:
division
an administrative unit in government or business

n the territorial and administrative division of some countries (such as France)

Type of:
administrative district, administrative division, territorial division
a district defined for administrative purposes

n a specialized sphere of knowledge

“baking is not my department
“his work established a new department of literature”
Type of:
sector, sphere
a particular aspect of life or activity

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.