Definition of stimulus in US English:

stimulus

noun

  • 1A thing or event that evokes a specific functional reaction in an organ or tissue.

    ‘areas of the brain which respond to auditory stimuli’
    • ‘The combination of visual and auditory stimuli is intriguing as well for the audience.’
    • ‘A cascade of events must occur for the neurotransmitter stimulus to lead to cellular response.’
    • ‘They are conditioned to respond to an auditory stimulus by, for example, dropping a block when a sound is heard through earphones.’
    • ‘Herein, we would like to add activating a topic receptor as a proapoptotic stimulus for its cells in the Table.’
    • ‘In mice, one way to get around this problem is by engineering animals that can only respond to a given stimulus in a single cell type.’
    • ‘The sensation of respiratory symptoms has to exceed a certain threshold before a nociceptive stimulus is perceived.’
    • ‘However, the primary stimulus for cytokine secretion during cardiac illness remains unknown.’
    • ‘In patients with primary sodium retention, the afferent stimuli are suppressed.’
    • ‘There may even be some spontaneous movement in response to stimuli such as loud noises or pain.’
    • ‘The neurogenic stimulus did not alter albumin exudation in any group.’
    • ‘They had slower reaction times for visual and auditory stimuli, as well as subtle chorea, dystonia, and nystagmus.’
    • ‘The stimuli evoked pain in the control subjects and the patients with psoriasis.’
    • ‘The Tullio phenomenon represents vestibular symptoms and/or eye movements evoked by a sound stimulus.’
    • ‘However, reaction times to visual stimuli were faster after using a mobile phone.’
    • ‘One explanation for this might be that athletes develop cutaneous blood vessels that respond more to vasodilatory stimuli.’
    • ‘Pain perception begins at the receptor site that responds to damaging stimuli.’
    • ‘Many other animals have sense organs that can detect stimuli beyond the confines of the human senses.’
    • ‘A number of studies suggest that arousal may be provoked by respiratory stimuli.’
    • ‘Local stimulation by distension along the body of the esophagus will elicit a peristaltic wave at the stimulus site.’
    • ‘State anxiety is a transitory state, which occurs in response to a stimulus and is likely to vary in intensity as a function of the stimulus.’
    1. 1.1 A thing that rouses activity or energy in someone or something; a spur or incentive.
      ‘if the tax were abolished, it would act as a stimulus to exports’
      • ‘It also acted as a stimulus for Britain to modernise her outdated Royal Air Force.’
      • ‘It needs fresh conflict, drama, the torrent of social stimuli that rouses it to activity.’
      • ‘America's goods and services become cheaper abroad so it acts as a stimulus for the US economy.’
      • ‘The present out and out secularism of the state could prove to be a stimulus to genuine ecumenism.’
      • ‘All of this will be billed as a stimulus package to boost economic growth.’
      • ‘However, the euro could also act as a stimulus for economic harmonization, and for the liberalization of labour and capital markets.’
      • ‘Together these monetary and fiscal stimuli will help to boost growth in the fourth quarter, he says.’
      • ‘A specific stimulus gets specific reactions and that's what he teaches his students to use on their horse.’
      • ‘The stimulus for the activity may be an important dinner party, a new boss to impress, or, in the case of professional chefs, a new book or television programme to fill.’
      • ‘Other forms of export could also act as a stimulus for national economies.’
      • ‘But the notion that the profit motive can adequately replace the public-service ethic as the stimulus for helping the old and sick is less than a joke.’
      • ‘Yet a powerful stimulus for the country's new leaders of all communities is the realisation that they must hang together if they are not to hang separately.’
      • ‘She said a bid would provide a huge stimulus for elite sport and also boost efforts to encourage it at grassroots level.’
      • ‘A key factor in the second half, given the loss of fiscal stimulus and rising energy prices, will be consumer spending.’
      • ‘The introduction of these two players acted as a positive stimulus for the home team and a stream of chances were created.’
      • ‘A researcher at the university found that the medical event itself is a stimulus for patients to quit smoking.’
      • ‘Also, if devaluation acts as a stimulus for growth in America this could have a positive knock-on effect in the rest of the world.’
      • ‘And given the strength of the dollar, the US economy will not receive a stimulus from increased exports.’
      • ‘It was possible that the injection of cash into communities would raise the level of demand for basic commodities and could act as an economic stimulus.’
      • ‘Clearly it fuels an enormous boost in prestige for the country, gives a further stimulus to its strongly growing economy and plants the seal on its policies of reform and opening up.’
      spur, stimulant, encouragement, impetus, boost, prompt, prod, incentive, inducement, inspiration, fillip
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 An interesting and exciting quality.
      ‘she loved the stimulus of the job’
      • ‘It's not, I believe, the stress of their old job that kills them but the sudden withdrawal of mental stimulus.’
      • ‘In this age of constant stimulus, Larivière posits that we're more in love with the images of our partners than the people themselves.’
      • ‘You need non-partner stimulus from friends (or classes, or an engaging job or hobby).’
      • ‘But in a way a big part of the stimulus of the job has been to be faced with repertoire that somebody else has chosen.’

Origin

Late 17th century: from Latin, ‘goad, spur, incentive’.

Pronunciation

stimulus

/ˈstɪmjələs//ˈstimyələs/