Definition of assign in English:



  • 1Allocate (a job or duty)

    ‘Congress assigned the task to the agency’
    with two objects ‘his leader assigned him this mission’
    • ‘The Army is assigning active duty liaisons to support all four of the VA's Poly Trauma Centers on a trial basis.’
    • ‘Talk about how you can break down the tasks, and assign jobs.’
    • ‘He should assign duties that best utilize the abilities of each player.’
    • ‘‘Good,’ he continued, as his mom brought in some more snacks, ‘Lets begin by assigning jobs.’’
    • ‘‘Ah, but I can assign washing duty,’ she said as she pushed her empty plate towards his direction.’
    • ‘In practice, it will be able to assign jobs as it sees fit.’
    • ‘I let everyone wake up on their own time before assigning jobs.’
    • ‘I had also been assigned another mission that day: to find a long-lost pen.’
    • ‘Only graduates majoring in movie directing have a chance of being assigned a directing job in one of the approved studios.’
    • ‘Instead, he opts to assign the job of piecing together their dialogues to the reader.’
    • ‘Some things you need to discuss in the first few meetings include: venue, assigning jobs, creating a name for the festival, and organizing fundraising.’
    • ‘Some of you may be assigned Orientation Duty, which means you show them around.’
    • ‘The Codae meeting was meant only to assign jobs and check on everyone's status.’
    • ‘For students such as that, I will assign a special job for the summer production.’
    • ‘The point of an internship is to learn something, so you must keep that in mind as you assign the intern duties.’
    • ‘Once upon a time there were three beautiful girls who went to a writing college, and they were each assigned very hazardous duties.’
    allocate, allot, give, set
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    1. 1.1 Appoint (someone) to a particular job, task, or organization.
      ‘she has been assigned to a new job’
      with object and infinitive ‘he was assigned to prosecute the case’
      • ‘Instead, with his movie-making experience, he was assigned to make military training films for pilots.’
      • ‘A person is assigned to complete the task, and the process or approach to reduce the risk is identified.’
      • ‘He was then assigned to work at a mechanical parts factory in a county.’
      • ‘After graduation from the dance school, he was assigned to the Shanghai Ballet Company.’
      • ‘This morning I was assigned to cover a keynote speech at a conference, the same conference I covered yesterday.’
      • ‘He was assigned to the daily personal care of the most profoundly disabled member of the house.’
      • ‘To his chagrin, he's assigned to a desolate base in icy Greenland.’
      • ‘A new Judge was assigned to his homicide conspiracy case; so he is back at square one.’
      • ‘I was assigned to a group taught by a New Yorker staff writer of a lovely style.’
      • ‘The waiter was working for a popular restaurant when he was assigned to a home wedding reception.’
      • ‘After a vacation in Ireland he was assigned to promotion work in the Diocese of Clonfert until 1964.’
      • ‘I was assigned to play forward and managed (more by luck than skill) to score two goals in the game.’
      • ‘He'd already given me headaches when I was assigned to cover his visit to York.’
      • ‘He was assigned to be a plasterer in a neighbouring community, allowing no time and chance for him to fully tap his talent.’
      • ‘Afterwards he was assigned to the 7th United States Cavalry and remained with them until his death.’
      • ‘I'm also going to post a list of what chores each of you are assigned to.’
      • ‘With no ensemble or piece to perform in, he was assigned to do solo standup comedy at last year's fundraiser.’
      • ‘I was temporarily assigned to a cubicle that was supposed to be empty for another day.’
      • ‘I was assigned to make the changes in the song, through some favor called in by a friend long ago.’
      • ‘I was actually assigned to study journalism and did not choose to be a journalist on my own.’
      appoint, promote, delegate, commission, post, nominate, vote, elect, adopt, co-opt
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  • 2Designate or set (something) aside for a specific purpose.

    ‘managers happily assign large sums of money to travel budgets’
    • ‘The major campus activity was for the campus grants office to assign a grant number and designate budget lines so that payroll and vendor records could be created.’
    • ‘One must understand the importance of assigning an appropriate number of NAIs at the battalion level.’
    • ‘You can reprogram the keys to launch different programs, open specific folder or assign URLs.’
    • ‘I feel I am an example of midwife services working well with resources being assigned appropriately.’
    • ‘Additionally, it is possible to assign any real-time interrupt service to any specific CPU.’
    • ‘The virtual interface is then assigned to a specific user or user community.’
    • ‘The multiplexer analyzes the complexity from all of them and assigns it appropriately.’
    • ‘Specific streets and roads are assigned for selling specific goods.’
    • ‘‘We will assign a specific recovery room suite to them and they're the only ones with access to it,’ Siefried said.’
    • ‘Increase the number of positive responses to your requests and reduce volunteer burnout and discontentment by assigning a specific term length to each position or task.’
    • ‘Another possible EU equivalent to the tenth amendment might be a proposed catalogue of competences assigning policy responsibilities to specific levels of government.’
    • ‘I'm convinced God has assigned a legion of Road-Angels specifically to me.’
    • ‘The schedulers assign an appropriate number from within that range and choose an even or odd flight number according to the direction of flight.’
    • ‘Caitlin acted as traffic controller, designating the rooms to which the things were assigned.’
    • ‘By assigning each group of pages to a specific channel and comparing results in custom channel reports webmasters can work at increasing their AdSense revenue.’
    • ‘For those who fail to designate a private money manager, the government bank is assigned by default.’
    earmark, appropriate, designate, set aside, set apart, keep, reserve
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    1. 2.1assign something to Attribute something as belonging to.
      ‘it is difficult to decide whether to assign the victory to Goodwin’
      • ‘However, further investigations are needed before assigning these Mexican specimens to a new status.’
      • ‘The Prosecution Office assigned the investigation to the National Investigative Service.’
      • ‘I have assigned numbers to the cases according to the date of occurrence of the accident.’
      • ‘The builder can now afford to assign engineering resources to the project without hedging against lost quoting hours.’
      • ‘The permits assign every Chinese citizen to a home district, outside of which they have few rights to welfare benefits, medical care or schooling.’
      • ‘Relative weights are assigned to the various customer attributes.’
      • ‘A district court judge later assigned the case to Noelle, a former attorney with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission now in private practice.’
      • ‘As a commander who receives missions and assigns missions to others, I suddenly am not thinking about the missions.’
      • ‘We assigned approximate percentages to food types according to their importance in the feeding spectrum of each species.’
      • ‘Members are selected at random to perform a kind of virtual jury duty, assigning a score to each comment according to its value.’
      • ‘His societal levels for prehistoric societies are arbitrary at best; he assigns incorrect dates to events; and attributes significance to events that are debatable.’
      • ‘The map shows the teams in which people actually work, as opposed to those they are assigned to.’
      • ‘Such an interpreter would attribute beliefs to others and assign meanings to their utterances, but would nevertheless do so on the basis of his own, true, beliefs.’
      • ‘Following the appeal, the MND assigned the case to the Bureau of Investigation in October and asked the CSBC to suspend the contract last month.’
      • ‘Due to poor preservation, it is not possible to assign the present material to one of these species.’
      • ‘The patients were assigned to two groups of roughly equal numbers.’
      • ‘Last week some of them discovered a remote and unexplored passage in Assynt, a find that affords them the privilege of assigning a name to the new cave.’
      • ‘The company will maintain patients' confidentiality by assigning a numeric code to the donated tissue.’
      • ‘Prior to the participant arriving, the researcher pseudo-randomly assigned the participant to a particular condition and programmed the software accordingly.’
      • ‘Imagine if you could assign attributes to any file by speech.’
      ascribe, attribute, put down, set down, accredit, credit, give the credit for, chalk up, impute
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  • 3Transfer (legal rights or liabilities)

    ‘they will ask you to assign your rights against the airline’
    • ‘In general terms, you are assigning the copyright of the photo to the encyclopedia.’
    • ‘He was about to make an order that the legal title to all the copyrights in the world be assigned to the claimants when the defendants took a second point.’
    • ‘We can then assign rights so as to maximize each individual's freedom, compatible with a like freedom for all.’
    • ‘The inclusion of amalgamation in an assignment would constitute a further restriction on the tenants' common law right to assign without consent.’
    • ‘The lesson is that we should be careful in assigning property rights in a dynamic setting.’
    • ‘There needs to be a balance between technological innovation and safety, and this balance will be best served by a balanced principle for assigning liability.’
    • ‘No order, nor any part order issued by the Company shall be assigned, sublet or transferred without the prior consent in writing of the Company.’
    • ‘Most investors shy away from brownfields because environmental laws assign liability to a broad range of parties, including the present owner.’
    • ‘We've therefore decided that we will no longer ask authors to assign their copyrights.’
    • ‘Courts assign property rights depending on market data.’
    • ‘The single-tax system assigns property rights so as to preserve economic incentives.’
    • ‘The employer executes a deed of assignment in standard form assigning legal ownership of the policies to each of the employees concerned and the insurers are notified accordingly.’
    • ‘The Sponsor has the right to assign such aforesaid rights and licence to its affiliates.’
    • ‘Clauses 5, 8 and 9 also assign responsibility and define the basis of liability.’
    • ‘Copyright rests with the individual photographers and rights are usually assigned for a single reproduction only.’
    • ‘Presumably, rights under the tenancy could be assigned, but the transfer of burdens would be ruled out by the privity of contract rules.’
    • ‘In the case of physical externalities such as pollution, we can often assign property rights as a way of settling disputes and improving matters.’
    • ‘A further possibility is that the author may be bound by the terms of contract or by contract law to assign the copyright in the work to some other party.’
    • ‘Invariably the borrower itself will be expressly prohibited from assigning its rights, notably its right to make further draw-downs.’
    • ‘The Borrower shall not be entitled to assign, transfer or otherwise deal in any way with all or any of its rights, benefits and obligations under this Agreement.’
    transfer, make over, give, pass, hand over, hand down, convey, consign, alienate
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  • another term for assignee (sense 1)
    • ‘If that seems desirable, consider providing that the lease is binding on the landlord's heirs, executors, administrators, legal representatives, successors or assigns.’
    • ‘He plans to leave in the morning, yet brings his assign, Cassio, to look over his affairs and his wife.’
    • ‘The rights and obligations of the Company hereunder shall accrue to its successor and assigns.’
    • ‘And, quite suspiciously, he and his assigns have repeatedly refused to hand those documents over to independent investigative authorities to authenticate them.’
    • ‘This Agreement provided that the terms of the agreement would be binding upon the Township and its successors or assigns.’


Middle English: from Old French asigner, assiner, from Latin assignare, from ad- ‘to’ + signare ‘to sign’.