Definition of homogeneous in English:


(also homogenous)


  • 1Of the same kind; alike.

    ‘if all jobs and workers were homogeneous’
    • ‘The risk is not a society of beautiful but homogeneous mannequins.’
    • ‘This means that students within each school are relatively homogeneous in terms of academic ability, while the schools show wide variation in the academic ability of their first-year intake.’
    • ‘The Kurds are more homogeneous than Iraqis as a whole, and yet even in the Kurdish areas, for about four years, there was essentially civil war.’
    • ‘However, these results were based on a sample of university men who were fairly homogeneous in age, sexual experience, and frequency of intercourse.’
    • ‘This notion of difference focuses on women as homogeneous; as though they all are alike, and different from men in the same way.’
    • ‘The study shows that property taxes are most regressive in municipalities where homeowner incomes vary widely but property values are relatively homogeneous.’
    • ‘More products are becoming homogeneous commodities for which uniformity of size, quality and taste is absolutely essential.’
    • ‘At the beginning of the experiments, seedlings were homogeneous in terms of length.’
    • ‘The sample used in the study was relatively small (compared to previous studies) and was made up of relatively homogeneous individuals making it difficult to generalize the results to the wider population.’
    similar, comparable, equivalent, like, analogous, corresponding, correspondent, parallel, matching, kindred, related, correlative, congruent, cognate
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Consisting of parts all of the same kind.
      ‘a homogeneous society’
      • ‘She demonstrates that even seemingly homogeneous groups had subgroups that thought very differently about compulsory insurance.’
      • ‘Perhaps the hybridity is difficult to see on the surface, given how homogeneous Argentinean society appears to be, especially in terms of race and class.’
      • ‘These findings confirmed the contention that when considering competence and self-esteem, single-parent children cannot be treated as a homogeneous group.’
      • ‘There is little doubt that if this were a more racially homogeneous country, capital punishment would have gone the way of the dodo bird 30 years ago.’
      • ‘Until the Second World War nearly all the countries of Europe had very homogeneous populations and very little recent experience of immigration.’
      • ‘In 1983, three pairs of permanent plots, each 5 x 5 m, were established in the study wood in sites with homogeneous vegetation.’
      • ‘The legend in Australia was that everyone is the same, living in a classless, regionless, ethnically homogeneous society with the same history and a universal accent.’
      • ‘This may explain why during the 20th century relatively homogeneous Scandanavia was able to build a welfare state, where melting pot America baulked.’
      • ‘We need to have homogeneous traffic if the problem of jams and slow moving traffic is to be solved.’
      • ‘The sample was very homogeneous, consisting primarily of well-educated White women.’
      • ‘The thousands of offenders released each year from Colorado prisons cannot be treated as an homogeneous group nor assisted in a standardized manner.’
      • ‘Through her work, Bertrand questions the desirability of a homogeneous world where emotional and physical diversity have been eradicated.’
      • ‘As a result, they end up with very homogeneous institutions, like major media, which reflect the world view of a self-selecting few.’
      • ‘A culturally homogeneous society whose members subscribe and adhere to one system of beliefs and practices is in the realm of fiction.’
      • ‘The cadets' problems must come from the fact that they live in a homogeneous and closed environment and under constant pressure of all sorts of compulsory norms and rules.’
      • ‘It is a crime committed not against members of ethnically or racially or religiously diverse groups but only against members of ethnically or racially or religiously homogeneous groups.’
      • ‘In Russia, the ethnic and geographic diversity of the population ensured its transition would be more difficult than that in the more homogeneous and smaller Baltic states or eastern European countries.’
      • ‘China is for the most part an extremely homogeneous society composed of a people who share one language, culture, and history.’
      • ‘At each meeting, it has struck me clearly that the party attracts not only smaller and smaller crowds, but the make-up of the crowd has become more homogeneous and less diversified.’
      • ‘Many Chileans almost glorify the country's physical isolation, as they consider it a key factor in allowing the creation of a homogeneous society.’
      uniform, identical, unvaried, unvarying, consistent, similar, undistinguishable
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    2. 1.2Mathematics Containing terms all of the same degree.
      • ‘This is what you do with homogeneous differential equations.’
      • ‘Here is a homogeneous equation in which the total degree of both the numerator and the denominator of the right-hand side is 2.’
      • ‘In this work, Moritz Cantor has discovered, Feuerbach introduces homogeneous coordinates.’
      • ‘A test of homogeneity also was conducted to determine if the 1986 and 1987 regression coefficients were homogeneous and could be pooled.’
      • ‘With few exceptions, non-quadratic homogeneous polynomials have received little attention as possible candidates for yield functions.’
  • 2Chemistry
    Denoting a process involving substances in the same phase (solid, liquid, or gaseous)

    ‘homogeneous catalysis’
    • ‘It converts organic solvents into a stable gel, providing an organometallic model for a catalyst to be used efficiently in a single phase, homogeneous catalytic reaction.’
    • ‘The few examples of homogeneous catalysis by gold previously reported in the literature are associated with very small turnover frequencies and yields of product per mole of catalyst.’
    • ‘Heterogeneous catalysis, in which the catalyst and reactants occupy separate phases, is something of a black art when compared with homogeneous catalysis.’
    • ‘One of the factors that makes process engineers think twice before choosing homogeneous catalysis, however, is the problem of separation.’
    • ‘The requirements of homogeneous diesel combustion processes give additional impetuses to the continued development of piezo controls for unit injector systems.’


The usual spelling is homogeneous, and the spelling homogenous is traditionally regarded as an error. Homogenous is a different word, a specialized biological term meaning ‘having a common descent’, which has been largely replaced by homologous. From the evidence of the Oxford English Corpus, the spelling homogeneous has become significantly less common since 2000, and around a third of citations for the word now use the form homogenous. This can now be regarded as an established variant


Early 17th century (as homogeneity): from medieval Latin homogeneus, from Greek homogenēs, from homos same + genos race, kind.