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[v. muh-trik-yuh-leyt; n. muh-trik-yuh-lit] /v. məˈtrɪk yəˌleɪt; n. məˈtrɪk yə lɪt/
verb (used with object), matriculated, matriculating.
to enroll in a college or university as a candidate for a degree.
to register (a coat of arms), used especially in Scottish heraldry.
verb (used without object), matriculated, matriculating.
to be matriculated.
a person who has been matriculated.
Origin of matriculate
1480-90 for earlier sense; < Medieval Latin mātrīculātus (person) listed (for some specific duty), equivalent to mātrīcul(a) list (see matriculant) + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
matriculation, noun
matriculator, noun
rematriculate, verb, rematriculated, rematriculating.
unmatriculated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for matriculation
  • matriculation criteria in this country are notoriously vague and flexible.
  • They debate and determine teaching methods, grading policies, and matriculation standards.
  • The high rate of matriculation masks a grave problem.
  • And that doesn't count alumni giving, summer school tuition, and maintenance of matriculation fees.
  • Or if they are, their matriculation comes at an extraordinary moment.
  • There's more physical play, more intensity, and more successful matriculation out of the west.
  • Meanwhile, as job opportunities abate, law school matriculation rates rise unchecked.
  • There typically isn't a problem with matriculation, as the student is fully aware of the conditions to admission.
  • In the physical sciences, doctoral students often have a chance to work on dissertation research immediately after matriculation.
  • There he sat for his matriculation examination, which was a prerequisite for admission to a college or university.
British Dictionary definitions for matriculation


the process of matriculating
(in Britain, except Scotland) a former school examination, which was replaced by the General Certificate of Education (Ordinary Level), now superseded by the General Certificate of Secondary Education


verb (məˈtrɪkjʊˌleɪt)
to enrol or be enrolled in an institution, esp a college or university
(intransitive) to attain the academic standard required for a course at such an institution
noun (məˈtrɪkjʊlɪt)
Also called matriculant. a person who has matriculated
Derived Forms
matriculator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin mātrīculāre to register, from mātrīcula, diminutive of matrix list, matrix
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for matriculation

1580s, noun of action from matriculate (v.).



1570s, "to admit a student to a college by enrolling his name on the register," from Late Latin matriculatus, past participle of matriculare "to register," from Latin matricula "public register," diminutive of matrix (genitive matricis) "list, roll," also "sources, womb" (see matrix).

The connection of senses in the Latin word seems to be via confusion of Greek metra "womb" (from meter "mother;" see mother (n.1)) and an identical but different Greek word metra meaning "register, lot" (see meter (n.2)). Evidently Latin matrix was used to translate both, though it originally shared meaning with only one. Related: Matriculated; matriculating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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