What does formative mean?

Definitions for formative
ˈfɔr mə tɪvfor·ma·tive

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word formative.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. formativeadjective

    minimal language unit that has a syntactic (or morphological) function

  2. formativeadjective

    capable of forming new cells and tissues

    "a formative zone in developing bone"

  3. formative, shaping, plasticadjective

    forming or capable of forming or molding or fashioning

    "a formative influence"; "a formative experience"


  1. formativenoun

    A language unit that has morphological function.

  2. formativeadjective

    Of or pertaining to the formation and subsequent growth of something.

    My formative years were spent in an inner city.

  3. formativeadjective

    Capable of forming something.

  4. formativeadjective

    Capable of producing new tissue.

  5. formativeadjective

    Pertaining to the inflection of words.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Formativeadjective

    giving form; having the power of giving form; plastic; as, the formative arts

    Etymology: [Cf. F. formatif.]

  2. Formativeadjective

    serving to form; derivative; not radical; as, a termination merely formative

    Etymology: [Cf. F. formatif.]

  3. Formativeadjective

    capable of growth and development; germinal; as, living or formative matter

    Etymology: [Cf. F. formatif.]

  4. Formativenoun

    that which serves merely to give form, and is no part of the radical, as the prefix or the termination of a word

    Etymology: [Cf. F. formatif.]

  5. Formativenoun

    a word formed in accordance with some rule or usage, as from a root

    Etymology: [Cf. F. formatif.]

Matched Categories

How to pronounce formative?

How to say formative in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of formative in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of formative in Pythagorean Numerology is: 1

Examples of formative in a Sentence

  1. Le Roux:

    These jobs were formative, for them and for myself.

  2. President Barack Obama:

    I don't want to psychoanalyze Mr. Putin. I will say that he has a foot very much in the Soviet past. That's how he came of age. He ran the KGB. Those were his formative experiences.

  3. Heather Henson:

    We lived in England at one time, and I just remember as a kid being brought to these interesting landscapes and places where my dad found inspiration, i remember going to his laboratory… I saw a lot of things that were happening in nature. Those were formative years for me, watching his research and development.

  4. Malen Gual:

    This is the only place where you can get a full vision of Picasso's formative years, we have a very comprehensive collection covering the years of his youth.

  5. John Hickenlooper:

    I understand that Americans are frustrated right now -- that they are hungry for bold change. I understand that our young people, especially, see socialism as an attractive alternative to the political gridlock and economic recession they experienced during their formative years, but it would be a grave mistake to abandon the American entrepreneurial spirit that has always been at our country's core.

Images & Illustrations of formative

  1. formativeformativeformativeformativeformative

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Translations for formative

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    a decorative musical accompaniment (often improvised) added above a basic melody
    • A. aberrate
    • B. huff
    • C. monish
    • D. descant

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