Definition of instruction in US English:



  • 1often instructionsA direction or order.

    ‘he issued instructions to the sheriff’
    ‘he was acting on my instructions’
    • ‘Communicate with the foreman - issuing instructions all over the place will cause problems.’
    • ‘The charges are conspiracy to violate a safety zone and failure to adhere to the Commander's instructions.’
    • ‘Strict instructions should be issued to bus crew, boat masters and the police to enforce the ban.’
    • ‘After putting on helmets and receiving instructions, we headed underground.’
    • ‘Some will, however, accept direct debit instructions to pay off all or the minimum each month.’
    • ‘He issued his instructions but not with the clarity of old.’
    • ‘Air traffic control wondered why the aircraft turned in the opposite direction each time an instruction was given.’
    • ‘There is a procedure in place, with a single authority which will issue instructions.’
    • ‘He sings as if issuing instructions to a slow-witted housekeeper.’
    • ‘Maia's voice rang in her memory, issuing orders and instructions the morning before.’
    • ‘Somebody had, however, issued him with instructions to admit this photographer.’
    • ‘What's worse, it is a policy instruction which comes directly from Ministers.’
    • ‘The instructions issued by the Home Office say the asylum seekers will be expected to do unpaid work for up to 35 hours a week.’
    • ‘Jones had given explicit instructions to his charges to behave earlier this week.’
    • ‘The cast of performers included three Korean boys who received their instructions through an interpreter.’
    • ‘We have issued strict instructions to the area engineers to fill potholes as and when they are appear.’
    • ‘Stripped to his track suit bottoms in the exhausting heat, he shouts instructions to his young charges.’
    • ‘When God asks Abraham to leave the land of his birth He gives the instructions in a curious order.’
    • ‘Finally the agent gives the woman the same instructions, ordering her to kill her husband.’
    • ‘Whether such an instruction qualifies the order to the bank or is directed to the payee is a question of fact.’
    order, command, directive, direction, decree, edict, injunction, mandate, dictate, commandment, diktat, demand, bidding, requirement, stipulation, charge, ruling, pronouncement
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    1. 1.1instructionsLaw Directions to a lawyer or to a jury.
      • ‘This was not a basis for excluding her evidence and the trial judge gave correct instructions to the jury on this point.’
      • ‘Equally, that is the proper time for his solicitors to receive such instructions.’
      • ‘I read that in the papers somewhere that the trial judge actually gave some instructions to the jury about the role of the foreman.’
      • ‘She does not say what particular instructions the solicitors received.’
      • ‘I will not read out that first paragraph on page 295 which is the judge's instructions to the jury.’
    2. 1.2Computing A code or sequence in a computer program that defines an operation and puts it into effect.
      • ‘Virtual memory uses an MMU to convert the virtual addresses that are used by program instructions to physical locations.’
      • ‘He found some of that useful redundancy in the instructions that tell the computer to add or subtract.’
      • ‘Properly crafted computer instructions appended to the text will then be executed by the machine, giving hackers a way in.’
      • ‘Clock speed will show the number of instructions that a computer can execute in a second.’
      • ‘A macro is set of keystrokes or instructions which are assigned to a short key.’
  • 2instructionsDetailed information telling how something should be done, operated, or assembled.

    ‘always study the instructions supplied’
    • ‘A succession of boxes with illustrations are accompanied by detailed instructions on how to work out the sums.’
    • ‘The tool includes questions to ask relatives and instructions for entering the information.’
    • ‘Before vanishing in 1822, he left coded instructions detailing the secret location of a fortune in gold.’
    • ‘Detailed instructions on slaughter technique were not made available until late March.’
    • ‘It soon became apparent that the organisers had omitted one crucial piece of information from their instructions.’
    • ‘Detailed postoperative instructions were given, and the patient was sent home.’
    • ‘I already had the wooden heads from my cosmetology course, and had ordered a kit and instructions for wig making on line.’
    • ‘Separate assembly instructions and illustrations then keep you working in an organized fashion.’
    • ‘Hal gave me detailed instructions how to find it in pre-dawn, following paint marks on the woods-road.’
    • ‘As well as detailed, door-to-door instructions, it provides users with a range of additional services.’
    • ‘The exert is Imhotep giving the queen instructions to follow in order to let the wound heal properly.’
    • ‘There are detailed instructions and safety tips provided in the Attachments Pack.’
    • ‘If only to save time, the menu at Atomic includes instructions for how to order a burrito.’
    • ‘I am not going to give you detailed instructions, just a general idea you can follow and experiment with yourselves.’
    • ‘USA Today published detailed instructions on how to treat a flag - it must never, ever touch the ground.’
    • ‘I think I might need to study the instructions again in more detail!’
    • ‘She could read simple instructions but more complicated information was still beyond her.’
    • ‘Each person was given detailed information and instructions on how to contribute to the study.’
    • ‘There is a growing library of books making it ‘fun’ for kids to invest and giving them detailed instructions on how to do so.’
    directions, key, guide, recipe, specification
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  • 3Teaching; education.

    ‘the school offers personalized instruction in a variety of skills’
    • ‘That is to say, Taiwanese educators fail to give instruction in accordance with individual needs.’
    • ‘The primary focus of our teacher's reading instruction was phonics and reading fluency.’
    • ‘The practical foundation of this policy has been the medium of instruction in primary schools.’
    • ‘When they reach middle school and high school, they will not have access to instruction in Spanish.’
    • ‘In a clear and lucid way, he was able to offer instruction about drawing the human form.’
    • ‘Training and education should include instruction on how to prevent and respond to or manage fires.’
    • ‘The teachers were asked to fill in the subject or activity and the medium of instruction for each period.’
    • ‘Each participant sat at a table across from the teacher when receiving instruction in the study.’
    • ‘During her instruction, a college class was observing her from a nearby college.’
    • ‘Policies to support student achievement are not restricted to curriculum and instruction.’
    • ‘Bosco provided boys with education, religious instruction, and recreation.’
    • ‘She can have the children come to her for instruction and teaching rather than having her go to them.’
    • ‘It is now the language of instruction in secondary education and in some universities.’
    • ‘The first day of instruction, the teacher asked students to summarize the problem in the video.’
    • ‘This is also the manner in which she handles the religious instruction and moral education classes entrusted to her.’
    • ‘Figure 1 is an example of how data are collected on ways teachers provide instruction.’
    • ‘The loss of parental preference does not mean that a child has no access to educational instruction either in school or otherwise.’
    • ‘The second model used Irish as the medium of instruction in schools either partially or fully.’
    • ‘Educators also spend less time in actual teaching or instruction than is specified in policy.’
    • ‘Full class instruction during school hours is a perfect way to introduce students to art sites.’
    teaching, tuition, coaching, tutoring, education, schooling, tutelage, pedagogy, andragogy
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Late Middle English: via Old French from late Latin instructio(n-), from the verb instruere (see instruct).