A response is a reaction to a question, experience, or some other type of stimulus. If you cry at sad movies, you're having an emotional response to the drama that's taking place on the screen.

A response can come in many forms, including an answer to a question, an emotional reaction, or a reply. If a teacher asks, "Who invented the phonograph?" She hopes her students will give her the response, "Why, Thomas Edison, of course!" When a parent tells a child not to cross the street when the light is red, he hopes the response will be compliance.

Primary Meanings of response

the speech act of continuing a conversational exchange
the manner in which something is greeted
a result
Full Definitions of response

n the speech act of continuing a conversational exchange

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a vigorous and unrestrained response
non sequitur
a reply that has no relevance to what preceded it
comeback, counter, rejoinder, replication, retort, return, riposte
a quick reply to a question or remark (especially a witty or critical one)
a reply that repeats what has just been said
the speech act of replying to a question
back talk, backtalk, lip, mouth, sass, sassing
an impudent or insolent rejoinder
an infant's repetition of sounds uttered by others
Urim and Thummim
lots thrown to determine God's answers to yes-no questions
defence, defense, refutation
the speech act of answering an attack on your assertions
Type of:
speech act
the use of language to perform some act

n a statement (either spoken or written) that is made to reply to a question or request or criticism or accusation

answer, reply
a reply by a Pope to an inquiry concerning a point of law or morality
response to an inquiry or experiment
Type of:
a message that is stated or declared; a communication (oral or written) setting forth particulars or facts etc

n a phrase recited or sung by the congregation following a versicle by the priest or minister

Type of:
an expression consisting of one or more words forming a grammatical constituent of a sentence

n the manner in which something is greeted

Type of:
greeting, salutation
(usually plural) an acknowledgment or expression of good will (especially on meeting)

n the manner in which an electrical or mechanical device responds to an input signal or a range of input signals

Type of:
fashion, manner, modality, mode, style, way
how something is done or how it happens

n a result

“this situation developed in response to events in Africa”
a response that reveals a person's feelings or attitude
Type of:
consequence, effect, event, issue, outcome, result, upshot
a phenomenon that follows and is caused by some previous phenomenon

n a bodily process occurring due to the effect of some antecedent stimulus or agent

“his responses have slowed with age”
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any reaction that occurs automatically without conscious thought or reflection (especially the undirected behavior seen in psychomotor epilepsy)
a reaction to a crisis or setback or frustration
an excessive reaction; a reaction with inappropriate emotional behavior
Fere phenomenon, GSR, Tarchanoff phenomenon, electrical skin response, electrodermal response, galvanic skin response, psychogalvanic response
a change in the electrical properties of the skin in response to stress or anxiety; can be measured either by recording the electrical resistance of the skin or by recording weak currents generated by the body
immune reaction, immune response, immunologic response
a bodily defense reaction that recognizes an invading substance (an antigen: such as a virus or fungus or bacteria or transplanted organ) and produces antibodies specific against that antigen
an involuntary orienting response; positive or negative reaction to a stimulus source
a locomotor response toward or away from an external stimulus by a motile (and usually simple) organism
a movement that is a response to a stimulus but is not oriented with respect to the source of stimulation
double take
a delayed reaction indicating surprise
inborn reflex, innate reflex, instinctive reflex, physiological reaction, reflex, reflex action, reflex response, unconditioned reflex
an automatic instinctive unlearned reaction to a stimulus
learned reaction, learned response
a reaction that has been acquired by learning
passage, passing
a bodily reaction of changing from one place or stage to another
a nonverbal reaction
transfusion reaction
reaction of the body to a transfusion of blood that is not compatible with its own blood; an adverse reaction can range from fever and hives to renal failure and shock and death
accommodation reflex
reflex changes in the eyes that enable an object to be focused on the retina
Babinski, Babinski reflex, Babinski sign
extension upward of the toes when the sole of the foot is stroked firmly on the outer side from the heel to the front; normal in infants under the age of two years but a sign of brain or spinal cord injury in older persons
belch, belching, burp, burping, eructation
a reflex that expels gas noisily from the stomach through the mouth
blink, blinking, eye blink, nictation, nictitation, wink, winking
a reflex that closes and opens the eyes rapidly
blush, flush
sudden reddening of the face (as from embarrassment or guilt or shame or modesty)
disgorgement, emesis, puking, regurgitation, vomit, vomiting
the reflex act of ejecting the contents of the stomach through the mouth
defecation reflex, rectal reflex
normal response to the presence of feces in the rectum
oscitance, oscitancy, yawn, yawning
an involuntary intake of breath through a wide open mouth; usually triggered by fatigue or boredom
electric shock, electrical shock, shock
a reflex response to the passage of electric current through the body
gulp, gulping
a spasmodic reflex of the throat made as if in swallowing
anamnestic reaction, anamnestic response
renewed rapid production of an antibody on the second (or subsequent) encounter with the same antigen
humoral immune response
an immune response (chiefly against bacterial invasion) that is mediated by B cells
cell-mediated immune response
an immune response (chiefly against viral or fungal invasions or transplanted tissue) that involves T cells
complement fixation
an immune response in which an antigen-antibody combination inactivates a complement (so it is unavailable to participate in a second antigen-antibody combination)
an affinity for work
an orienting response to gravity
an orienting response to the sun
an effect of climate on biological processes (as the effect on joint pains etc.)
an affinity for neural tissues
an orienting response to light
an orienting response to food
an orienting response to warmth
movement by a cell or organism in reaction to a chemical stimulus
acquired reflex, conditional reaction, conditional reflex, conditional response, conditioned reaction, conditioned reflex, conditioned response
an acquired response that is under the control of (conditional on the occurrence of) a stimulus
knee jerk, knee-jerk reflex, patellar reflex
a reflex extension of the leg resulting from a sharp tap on the patellar tendon
light reflex, miosis, myosis, pupillary reflex
reflex contraction of the sphincter muscle of the iris in response to a bright light (or certain drugs) causing the pupil to become smaller
reflex pupillary dilation as a muscle pulls the iris outward; occurs in response to a decrease in light or certain drugs
micturition reflex
relaxation of the urethral sphincter in response to increased pressure in the bladder
gag reflex, pharyngeal reflex
normal reflex consisting of retching; may be produced by touching the soft palate in the back of the mouth
goose bump, goose pimple, goose skin, goosebump, gooseflesh, horripilation, pilomotor reflex
reflex erection of hairs of the skin in response to cold or emotional stress or skin irritation
plantar reflex
flexion of the toes when the sole of the foot is stroked firmly on the outer side from the heel to the front in persons over the age of 2 years; under 2 years the results should be extension of the toes (Babinski reflex)
rooting reflex
reflex consisting of head-turning and sucking movements elicited in a normal infant by gently stroking the side of the mouth or cheek
jump, start, startle
a sudden involuntary movement
myotactic reflex, stretch reflex
reflex contraction of a muscle when an attached tendon is pulled; important in maintaining erect posture
suckling reflex
reflex behavior in newborn mammals; includes finding and grasping the nipple in the mouth and sucking on it and swallowing the milk
shake, shiver, tremble
a reflex motion caused by cold or fear or excitement
sneeze, sneezing, sternutation
a symptom consisting of the involuntary expulsion of air from the nose
hiccough, hiccup, singultus
(usually plural) the state of having reflex spasms of the diaphragm accompanied by a rapid closure of the glottis producing an audible sound; sometimes a symptom of indigestion
Type of:
activity, bodily function, bodily process, body process
an organic process that takes place in the body

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