A determinant is a factor or cause that makes something happen or leads directly to a decision.

The word determinant hasn't strayed much from its roots in the Latin word for "determining." As a noun or adjective, it refers to determining or deciding something. A snowstorm could be a determinant in school being canceled. Or a good health-care plan could be the determinant in someone taking a job. The determinant cause of a disease is responsible for the spread of the disease. Anything described as determinant is important.

Definitions of determinant
  1. noun
    a determining or causal element or factor
    “education is an important determinant of one's outlook on life”
    synonyms: causal factor, determinative, determiner, determining factor
    see moresee less
    show 8 types...
    hide 8 types...
    clincher, decisive factor
    a point or fact or remark that settles something conclusively
    a cognitive factor that tends to have an effect on what you do
    a factor whose effects cannot be accurately assessed
    a distinctive influence
    morale builder
    something or someone who influences by building or strengthening morale
    canker, pestilence
    a pernicious and malign influence that is hard to get rid of
    something providing immaterial assistance to a person or cause or interest
    enticement, temptation
    something that seduces or has the quality to seduce
    type of:
    cognitive factor
    something immaterial (as a circumstance or influence) that contributes to producing a result
  2. noun
    the site on the surface of an antigen molecule to which an antibody attaches itself
    synonyms: antigenic determinant, epitope
    see moresee less
    type of:
    site, situation
    physical position in relation to the surroundings
  3. noun
    a square matrix used to solve simultaneous equations
    see moresee less
    type of:
    square matrix
    a matrix with the same number of rows and columns
  4. adjective
    having the power or quality of deciding
    “the determinative (or determinant) battle”
    synonyms: deciding, determinative, determining
    determining or having the power to determine an outcome
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘determinant'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
Word Family

Look up determinant for the last time

Close your vocabulary gaps with personalized learning that focuses on teaching the words you need to know.

VocabTrainer -'s Vocabulary Trainer