Definition of criterion in US English:


nounPlural criteria

  • A principle or standard by which something may be judged or decided.

    ‘the launch came too close to violating safety criteria’
    • ‘This is one of the principles stated in the criteria for excellence in assessment.’
    • ‘It eludes me as to how the various blogs will be judged and under what criteria.’
    • ‘Clearly the rules and the criteria by which the licensing panel are working are deeply flawed.’
    • ‘Judged on those criteria, the tour is undoubtedly a flop of monumental proportions.’
    • ‘They were selected to take part on the basis of criteria laid down by the Education Department.’
    • ‘Unless you decide that for some reason it is better to judge by other criteria.’
    • ‘Only then can we reach the standardised criterion of economic growth and prosperity.’
    • ‘Performance is the only criterion by which a team chasing greatness can judge itself.’
    • ‘He says that, in any case, there is little new in broadening the criteria for selection.’
    • ‘One of the main criteria the youth must meet for the camp is to have a business plan or idea.’
    • ‘There are certain criteria which groups must meet to apply for the grants to be eligible.’
    • ‘The one criteria is that they must be active, whether in sport or other types of health and fitness.’
    • ‘In some circumstances it is difficult to make economic criteria apply even in principle.’
    • ‘There will also be a review of all existing holders to make sure they meet the new criteria.’
    • ‘These contractors will be required to meet criteria to be eligible for a permit.’
    • ‘That is the criterion or standard by which the arbitrator is to be guided.’
    • ‘The problem is there are no clear guidelines as to what the criteria should be.’
    • ‘They join by invitation only and must meet certain criteria before they will be admitted.’
    • ‘The country needs not just guidelines on care but criteria that are set solidly.’
    • ‘In addition, sites are selected as suitable only if they meet demanding criteria.’
    basis, point of reference, standard, norm, yardstick, benchmark, touchstone, test, formula, measure, gauge, scale, barometer, indicator, litmus test
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Strictly speaking, the singular form (following the original Greek) is criterion and the plural form is criteria. It is a common mistake, however, to use criteria as if it were a singular, as in a further criteria needs to be considered


Early 17th century: from Greek kritērion ‘means of judging’, from kritēs (see critic).