Definition of practice in English:

practice

noun

mass noun
  • 1The actual application or use of an idea, belief, or method, as opposed to theories relating to it.

    ‘the principles and practice of teaching’
    ‘the recommendations proved too expensive to put into practice’
    • ‘They worked hard, ran hard and trained hard, all the time trying to put into practice what their coaches were telling them.’
    • ‘There is no fancy stuff here; just straight accounting theory put into practice.’
    • ‘The idea was put into practice last year but it was not until this term that it really took off.’
    • ‘This is something that is far easier to state than to put into practice.’
    • ‘In practice, most are expected to be set up as master trusts.’
    • ‘The third stage is actually to put into practice what we have heard and what we have contemplated.’
    • ‘How is he able to put into practice what he preached?’
    • ‘However, Elliott warns that it still needs to be evaluated before the theory is put into practice.’
    • ‘How does our habitual practice of everyday eugenics shape our view of the world and of creation?’
    • ‘Each camp featured league play in two divisions, where the campers put into practice what they had learned throughout the week.’
    • ‘Not only are they divisive, but they might actually either have to be put into practice, or they might have to be changed.’
    • ‘In the challenge of his new role he found an opportunity to put into practice theories which had long been forming in his mind.’
    • ‘We must again be aware of the gap between ideas and actual practice.’
    • ‘It sounds like a good idea but theory and practice can be very different, as we have seen all too often before in this industry.’
    • ‘The importance of this book lies in the fact that its author is concerned not just with ideas, but with actual practice.’
    • ‘He said some recommendations had been put into practice while others were being implemented.’
    • ‘However, when lessons are learned in the abstract they are not as valuable as when put into practice, as we learned the very next day.’
    • ‘Army leaders at all levels should renew efforts to reduce the gap between stated beliefs and actual practice.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, it often appears that she is unable to get her free-market ideas put into practice.’
    • ‘As for the possibility of these suggestions being put into practice, that stage has not yet been reached.’
    application, exercise, use, operation, implementation, execution, enactment, action, doing
    use, make use of, put to use, utilize, apply, employ, exercise, put into effect, put into operation, draw on, bring into play
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The carrying out or exercise of a profession, especially that of a doctor or lawyer.
      ‘he abandoned medical practice for the Church’
      • ‘This problem will permeate every aspect of medical research and practice in the future.’
      • ‘He figured he could always incorporate his flair for comedy into his practice as doctor.’
      • ‘Because of her focus on him, in her assessment of contemporary medical practice, she identifies the wrong problem.’
      • ‘We documented the preferences of a range of patients within one hospital, with the aim of informing doctors' practice.’
      • ‘It accords completely with the constitutional requirements met by most of medical practice.’
      • ‘The expansion of medical practice into the regulation of behaviour carries doctors beyond their sphere of expertise and competence.’
      • ‘The urge to bring down the edifice of medical practice seems to me to indicate the extent to which our expectations have been brought down already.’
      • ‘Until recently English courts have generally adopted the standard of accepted medical practice.’
      • ‘But the main thrust of correspondence focused on the future of a particular medical practice.’
      • ‘The motives of the doctor and the wider context of medical practice just aren't relevant.’
      • ‘After publication, he decided to leave anatomical research to take up medical practice.’
      • ‘Suffice it to say that this has not been my experience of the last 15 years of medical practice.’
      • ‘Once there the family found accommodation in Hindley Street where the doctor set up practice.’
      • ‘Once doctors entered practice, the profession was personally remunerative as well.’
      • ‘In good medical practice, the intention is to maximise the quality of life experienced by the patient.’
      • ‘I believe the most challenging aspect of all forms of medical practice is the need for, and the exercise of, judgment.’
      • ‘He is a barrister and solicitor of this court, and he carries on the practice of his profession at the City of London.’
      • ‘Consideration should be given to removing the doctor from practice in such cases.’
      • ‘In a statement he admitted he plans to return to medical practice.’
      • ‘At present, the list of colleges where doctors can qualify to practice is legislated under the Health Insurance Act.’
      profession, career, business, work, pursuit, occupation, following
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2count noun The business or premises of a doctor or lawyer.
      ‘Dr Apps has a practice in Neasham Road’
      • ‘Her reputation as a hardworking lawyer saw her practice grow, making her one of the five leading attorneys in Houston.’
      • ‘A trail-blazing super care centre that would move three doctors' practices and a clinic to one site is a backwards step, health bosses were told.’
      • ‘It will call for improved career structures to be put in place to attract doctors to rural practices and for them to be given support to keep them in their jobs.’
      • ‘Qualitative data showed that patients generally supported the teaching of student doctors in their practice.’
      • ‘The only doctors' practice in Westbury is pressing ahead with plans to create three separate surgeries in the area.’
      • ‘When he was deputy governor he still ran his doctor's practice.’
      • ‘Two of the groups consisted of doctors from different practices and one group comprised doctors from one practice.’
      • ‘Missed appointments at one doctors' practice in Keighley are costing £60,000 a year in wasted time.’
      • ‘Both I, and my sister's family, attend husband-and-wife doctors' practices.’
      • ‘The doctor's practice in Settle has about 9,000 registered patients so we can't afford to be complacent.’
      • ‘When and if you intend to foist 3,580 patients on to doctors in other practices, what will their reaction be?’
      • ‘Our current building is the size now allowed for a two doctor, 4,000 patient practice, and clearly cannot cope.’
      • ‘And just like a doctors' practice, police hope the surgeries will prevent problems before they happen.’
      • ‘Of course, some are plagued by such problems due to family difficulties, but, according to a survey among doctors' practices, many are there simply because they are over-burdened.’
      • ‘He has now stopped his medical practice and is making use of his literary prowess to pen down useful material that is of some value to society.’
      • ‘I have never been satisfied with this doctor's practice in the three years I have been there, and I really do intend to move.’
      • ‘But doctors claim many practices have been forced to change their booking systems to meet the targets.’
      • ‘He sold his house to keep his medical practice going while he was away.’
      • ‘While the name of only one doctor may appear on the contract, there may be other doctors sharing his practice.’
      • ‘A self-contained extension to the rear previously served as a doctor's practice.’
      business, firm, office
      View synonyms
  • 2The customary, habitual, or expected procedure or way of doing of something.

    ‘product placement is common practice in American movies’
    count noun ‘modern child-rearing practices’
    • ‘We have been effective in changing cultural practices in businesses.’
    • ‘They also dealt with some topics on unethical practices in business.’
    • ‘The point is to protect the consumer from predatory business practices.’
    • ‘The whiff of fraudulent business practices will linger.’
    • ‘The practice is expected to put huge strain on the state health budget.’
    • ‘It's common practice for Hollywood to remake an old movie, but today's news must be some kind of record.’
    • ‘The Federal Trade Commission handles complaints about deceptive or unfair business practices.’
    • ‘With the help of scanning technology and just-in-time inventory systems, businesses changed their practices.’
    • ‘It is expected to identify practices, procedures, and guidelines that will aid faculties in developing students to their maximum potential.’
    • ‘This practice would carry on through the Apollo, Mercury, and Gemini space programs.’
    • ‘‘The reason the magazine failed was not a failure of the message so much as lousy business practices,’ said Grace.’
    • ‘A strict code of practice is followed when carrying these out to protect the interests of the young person.’
    • ‘However, they have continued to carry out this practice and it's a continued difficulty.’
    • ‘He said admitting more patients for a short time was good medical practice, to allow doctors to make a diagnosis and provide treatment more quickly.’
    • ‘Woodrow Wilson instituted the modern practice of delivering it to congress in person.’
    • ‘Lobby your MP, otherwise our silence will allow this barbaric practice to carry on.’
    • ‘‘By ignoring ethical business practices, small businesses are missing a trick,’ he said.’
    • ‘The practice was possibly carried over from a similar arrangement in Massachusetts.’
    • ‘Every morning the Indian flag is ceremonially hoisted on a central flagpole, an unusual practice for businesses here.’
    • ‘The businessmen also felt uncertain about the government's capability to enforce the law to ensure they were not hurt financially by unfair business practices.’
    custom, procedure, policy, convention, tradition, fashion, habit, wont, method, system, routine, institution, way, rule
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 An established method of legal procedure.
      • ‘It is now established practice for judges to quash a conviction while suggesting that the appellants are not necessarily innocent.’
      • ‘This conclusion is completely at odds with established legal practice and principles…’
      • ‘Conveyancing practice is plainly a matter within the knowledge of the courts.’
      • ‘That the appellant notary acted in accordance with the then general notarial practice does not seem to be contested.’
      • ‘It is the universal practice in conveyancing that enquiries as to licences would have been made.’
  • 3Repeated exercise in or performance of an activity or skill so as to acquire or maintain proficiency in it.

    ‘it must have taken a lot of practice to become so fluent’
    • ‘Responsible believing is a skill that can be maintained only through constant practice.’
    • ‘They are skilled manipulators who lie with the proficiency of long practice.’
    • ‘It takes much skill and practice to churn out terracotta articles.’
    • ‘Thus, additional practice and greater skill mastery is recommended in preparation for night diving activities.’
    • ‘Like other skill development, intercultural skills are acquired through practice.’
    • ‘The major element in such transformation was repeated practice of close order drill.’
    • ‘Also, we wanted to determine whether modest practice would modify performance of either group.’
    • ‘It should be good practice for a repeat performance in March, when they go in front of the Commons' Culture Committee.’
    • ‘As with any skill, practice and repetition are the keys to confidence and competent performance.’
    • ‘One of a pair of identical twins was given a lot of early practice at a particular skill, such as crawling.’
    • ‘In the weeks before a performance, practice can easily consume six hours a day.’
    • ‘Specifically military skills were acquired by actual practice and performance under supervision.’
    • ‘Public speaking is a learned skill that requires practice, effort, and confidence building.’
    • ‘This game offers a great opportunity for practice of various motor skills.’
    • ‘Continued practice and performance should easily eliminate these.’
    • ‘She worked very very hard on developing her skills at swimming and put in a lot of practice and training before the Olympics.’
    • ‘We have to ride close to the trees and hold our horses there to share the experience, which is good practice for our riding skills.’
    • ‘There was a ‘best dressed’ competition and lots of warm-up singing practice to kick the evening off.’
    • ‘Having little practice in the gymnastic skills, which I was forced to learn during my training, I fell flat on my back.’
    • ‘The purpose was to demonstrate that knowledge could be acquired easily but skills came with practice.’
    training, rehearsal, repetition, preparation, exercise, drill, study
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1count noun A period of time spent practising an activity or skill.
      ‘daily choir practices’
      • ‘Choir practices are held every Wednesday night at 9 p.m. in the church and all new members are welcome.’
      • ‘Choir practice for this ceremony will take place on Monday nights.’
      • ‘She sharpens her skills at practice in preparation for a pair of weekend games.’
      • ‘And the past few months your practices have ran late!’
      • ‘All three groups are provided the opportunity to do two-a-day practices during the summer months.’
      • ‘We constantly stress the sense of accomplishment they should carry away from practice.’
      • ‘He'd had basketball practice after school and had changed clothes before he came over.’
      • ‘As expected, band practice takes up a nice, hefty chunk of their time.’
      • ‘Choir practice continues each Tuesday evening at 7.30 pm and new members would be most welcome.’
      • ‘It has been decided to start a children's choir with practices commencing on Monday 10th October at 8pm and finishing at 8.30 pm.’
      • ‘Weekly choir practices take place in the parish church every Wednesday night at 8.00 pm.’
      • ‘Swimmers have two practices daily grouped by age and ability.’
      • ‘A choir practice will take place in Woodfield church on this evening.’
      • ‘The sample consisted of consecutive women attending the practices during time periods randomly selected for data collection.’
      • ‘They must have had some interesting choir practices.’
      • ‘You see, cheerleading here is a year round sport with practices almost every other day, sometimes more.’
      • ‘There will be a choir practice in Ballylinan on Thursday night at 8pm, for both the folk group and the adult choir.’
      • ‘They have been rehearsing every weekend for the last three months, stepping up to daily practices for the last couple of weeks.’
      • ‘Imagine the chagrin of a young team that has spent several practices learning a conventional offensive play only to meet this pattern.’
      • ‘He stays late at practice refining skills and stays late in the weight room and film room.’

verb

Usage

Care should be taken with the use of the words practice and practise as there are differences in British and US usage. Practice is the correct spelling for the noun in both British and US English and it is also the spelling of the verb in US English. However, in British English the verb should be spelled practise

Phrases

  • in practice

    • 1In reality (used to refer to what actually happens as opposed to what is meant or believed to happen)

      ‘in theory this method is ideal—in practice it is unrealistic’
      • ‘Critics, however, argued that such contracts were unenforceable in practice.’
      • ‘Well, you might say, that is all very well, but how does it translate in practice?’
      • ‘There are four possible explanations for why performance data have so little influence in practice.’
      • ‘He argues that in practice researchers do not base their decisions about sample size on a single estimate of a variable.’
      • ‘But many of them only serve the slogan with their lips, and do not abide by it in practice.’
      • ‘Thus imprisonment and the exercise of conjugal rights are incompatible in practice.’
      • ‘It remains to be seen whether in practice the discretion is exercised lawfully.’
      • ‘These different layers of management in practice merge into each other.’
      • ‘While these travellers might not support globalism in theory, in practice it oozes from their every pore.’
      • ‘The current one has proved to be rather unwieldy in practice and I shall be glad to consign it to history.’
      in reality, actually, in real life, realistically, practically, effectively
      View synonyms
    • 2Currently proficient in a particular activity or skill as a result of repeated exercise or performance of it.

  • out of practice

    • Not currently proficient in a particular activity or skill through not having exercised or performed it for some time.

      ‘he was out of practice at interrogation’
      • ‘In an article on the front page, the revelers were referred to as ‘long-suffering fans who are a little out of practice when it comes to celebrating a championship.’’
      • ‘The ones that have been on TV lately are out of practice and come across as lame.’
      • ‘I'm just out of practice, or at least my legs are out of practice.’
      • ‘He may find this hard work after having been out of practice for so long, but I suggest it will be good for him, and certainly for Australian journalism.’
      • ‘This means that when finally offered the opportunity to speak, I'm liable to begin with apologising for being so out of practice, and then to start blithering unstoppably.’
      • ‘It had been a long, long, long time since I had kissed anyone, so my skills were probably way out of practice, but Jill didn't seem to care.’
      • ‘Obviously, I haven't gotten far yet: the oars are stiff and my arms sore, out of practice as they are.’
      • ‘It was quite hard to get back into a once familiar groove of academic research, because now I have no library borrowing privileges and am out of practice with the convoluted argot in which the material is written.’
      • ‘But being out of practice shouldn't change my way of seeing the world.’
      • ‘Maybe I got out of practice over the weekend, but I don't think so.’
      rusty, unpractised
      View synonyms
  • practice makes perfect

    • Regular exercise of an activity or skill is the way to become proficient in it.

      • ‘Remember that practice makes perfect, so kiss often and be kissed!’
      • ‘I'm auditioning for several big events this year, and practice makes perfect.’
      • ‘Note: if the batter is not staying together, add an egg; if it's too thin add flour, too thick, add milk - it may be necessary to adjust to get the best results - practice makes perfect, really!’
      • ‘Subsequently, she advises: ‘Draw like crazy; practice makes perfect.’’
      • ‘People say that practice makes perfect, but instead, every time I fail, I find I'm worse off the next time.’
      • ‘But practice makes perfect, and my vocal speech skills can always be bettered.’
      • ‘But if practice makes perfect, I'm better equipped for my next foray into self-discipline, which begins the day this column is published.’
      • ‘When an athlete is trying to hone his or her skills the cliché often used is practice makes perfect.’
      • ‘But, working on the premise that practice makes perfect, he continues to improve and is entitled to feel he is the second best player in the world at the moment, even if his official ranking is fifth.’
      • ‘Repetition is the mother of skill, and practice makes perfect.’

Origin

Late Middle English: from practise, on the pattern of pairs such as advise, advice.

Pronunciation

practice

/ˈpraktɪs/