Meaning of professor in English:


Pronunciation /prəˈfɛsə/

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  • 1

    (North American full professor)
    A university academic of the highest rank; the holder of a university chair.

    as title ‘Professor Goodwin’
    • ‘a professor of Art History’
    • ‘They supported charitable foundations, gave money to local hospitals and churches, subsidized chairs for university professors.’
    • ‘Would a chair professor of literature at Yale University be allowed to conduct serially personal liaisons with female graduate students over his entire career across decades?’
    • ‘But he soon left to join the College of Medicine of the University of Lagos as a lecturer, rising through the ranks to become a professor and head of department of paediatrics.’
    • ‘That reflects the fact that it has become a proper trade union as international competition has turned university professors and lecturers into another section of the world working class.’
    • ‘There are a legion of them, a scattering of businessmen and prospective students, but mostly teachers and principals, professors and university officials.’
    • ‘If the A-level results are better than ever, as the government insists, why are successful students, teachers and university professors unhappy about them?’
    • ‘On polls of what is highest in the public esteem, university professors and teachers are right at the top and politicians are right at the bottom.’
    • ‘On the other hand, the Church assumed control of all levels of state education, and the lectures of professors at the Central University of Madrid were censored, to stop French ideas seeping into Spain.’
    holder of a chair, chair, head of faculty, head of department
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    1. 1.1North American An associate professor or an assistant professor.
      ‘The people best positioned to effect this communication are high school teachers, college professors, and fellow students.’
      • ‘Before joining Stanford in 1998, Hammond was a professor at Columbia University's Teachers College.’
      • ‘There are, however, times when the balancing act of being both a college professor and a teacher of young children can get frustrating.’
      • ‘Singer, though, isn't a secondary school teacher but a professor of bioethics at Princeton.’
      • ‘In the King tradition, Dyson is a Baptist minister and a learned academic, now a professor at DePaul University.’
      • ‘Very few professors will agree to chair their departments or take on deanships or even consider college presidencies.’
      • ‘It is a declaration of academic freedom by American professors at the end of the twentieth century.’
      • ‘It conflicts with most conceptions of academic freedom articulated by professors.’
      • ‘Now in his 80s, he has been a successful artist for the past 40 years while continuing his career as a college professor in the State University system of California.’
      • ‘As young accounting students turn away from academia, accounting professors are getting older.’
      trainer, teacher, tutor, coach, demonstrator, adviser, counsellor, guide
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  • 2A person who affirms a faith in or allegiance to something.

    ‘the professors of true religion’
    • ‘A suspicion got abroad that the professors of this religion had made use of unfair means to get their doctrines taught to children.’
    • ‘In a very heart searching way, Bunyan reveals the difference between a true Christian who struggles and fights against sin and a false professor who manifests no spiritual transformation.’
    • ‘There have been official councils of the church at which professors outnumbered bishops.’
    • ‘There is a spiritual basis to their lives with Saul a professor of religious philosophy and a scholar of the Kabbal.’


Late Middle English from Latin professor, from profess- ‘declared publicly’, from the verb profiteri (see profess).