How To Write A Definition

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How To Write A Definition

  1. 1. How to Write a Definition Elizabeth Therese Gaughan * English Language Assistant * IES La Arboleda A Short Guide
  2. 2. What is a definition? <ul><li>A definition is an explanation of the meaning of a term. </li></ul><ul><li>A term is a word or phrase. </li></ul><ul><li>Examples: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hamster : A hamster is a small rodent that is often kept as a pet. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tomato : A tomato is soft, red fruit that is often used in salads and sandwiches. </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Where do we find definitions? <ul><li>The best place to find a definition is in a dictionary . </li></ul><ul><li>However, sometimes YOU must create your own definition of a word or phrase. </li></ul><ul><li>How??? Let’s see… </li></ul>
  4. 4. It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3… <ul><li>A formal definition has three parts: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The term </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The group of object or concept to which the term belongs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The special characteristics that make the term different from others in its group </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Let’s look at an example… </li></ul>
  5. 5. Water <ul><li>The term </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Water is… </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The group of object or concept to which the term belongs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… a liquid… </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The special characteristics that make the term different from others in its group </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… made up of two molecules of hydrogen and one molecule of oxygen. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Water is a liquid made up of two molecules of hydrogen and one molecule of oxygen. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Practice Together <ul><li>Let’s try one as a class. </li></ul><ul><li>Put it all together… </li></ul>
  7. 7. Practice Individually Three-step process and water example taken from The OWL at Purdue, http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/622/01/ .

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