Definition of theoretical in English:

theoretical

adjective

  • 1Concerned with or involving the theory of a subject or area of study rather than its practical application.

    ‘a theoretical physicist’
    ‘the training is task-related rather than theoretical’
    • ‘In theoretical science, we have no reason to suppose that we are ever talking about anything.’
    • ‘Studies up to that point were entirely theoretical and lacked any real practical application.’
    • ‘Oskar Klein died in Stockholm, one of the finest theoretical physicists of the twentieth century.’
    • ‘However he was also very active in applications of mathematics to theoretical physics.’
    • ‘His careful study of military affairs had been as much theoretical as practical.’
    • ‘I guess I'm interested in this question more from a theoretical than practical standpoint.’
    • ‘Excuse me for for butting in… But does it matter if a theoretical framework is unfalsifiable?’
    • ‘The preceding chapters have been concerned with the theoretical sciences.’
    • ‘The two-hour sessions are split in half; the first theoretical, the second practical.’
    • ‘Another area of mathematics that is full of rough estimates is theoretical computer science.’
    • ‘These majors were too theoretical and impractical, so that it would have been hard to find a job.’
    • ‘Then he could acquire the practical skills to go with his theoretical knowledge.’
    • ‘The PR guy said she was tipped as one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists of her generation.’
    • ‘In addition to the theoretical course, he had four years' experience working with horses.’
    • ‘Zhukovskii was concerned both with theoretical and with experimental aspects of the subject.’
    • ‘HNDs are much more vocational than degrees and can often be more practical rather than theoretical.’
    • ‘Will there be no work left for theoretical physicists to do in the twenty-first century?’
    • ‘To do this it is helpful to detail briefly the theoretical framework within which these questions were grounded.’
    • ‘This point is most clear in the area of theoretical science, though it has much broader application.’
    not practical, conceptual, abstract, pure
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Based on or calculated through theory rather than experience or practice.
      ‘the theoretical value of their work’
      • ‘Yet this trend raises a number of important issues, both theoretical and practical.’
      • ‘It also considers the theoretical and practical powers and constraints on a Prime Minister.’
      • ‘Galen believed that medicine required both practical and theoretical elements.’
      • ‘Now the lost work is regarded as a masterpiece with a theoretical value of £300,000.’
      • ‘The session included experience-based, theoretical, and practical aspects.’
      • ‘Moreover the concern is an intensely practical one, rather than theoretical.’
      • ‘Experimental tests with aquatic species have backed up the theoretical predictions.’
      • ‘There is a strong theoretical and practical case for free trade and the economic benefits it brings.’
      • ‘It takes real guts to stop being just a critic of the system and come up with solutions, both practical and theoretical.’
      • ‘Freud constantly revised his theories in view of theoretical concerns and new data.’
      • ‘Wilson's essay is desperately keen to convey her theoretical vision of the world.’
      • ‘And he also identified a desire to work on real rather than theoretical problems.’
      • ‘For Marx the unity of theory and practice meant the resolution of theoretical problems by practical activity.’
      • ‘His basic research laid the foundation for many later theoretical and practical developments.’
      • ‘This is, of course, a theoretical calculation, but one which graphically illustrates the point.’
      • ‘The concerns of the literati were practical was well as theoretical.’
      • ‘How wonderful it would be if all theoretical conclusion equated with the practical reality.’
      • ‘This is not to suggest that research is entirely dictated by theoretical concerns.’
      • ‘It is clear that Laurent was a good engineer, putting his deep theoretical knowledge to good practical use.’
      • ‘These books will be exemplars of empirical study and theoretical understanding.’
      hypothetical, conjectural, academic, suppositional, speculative, notional, postulatory, conjectured, imagined, assumed, presumed, untested, unproven, unsubstantiated
      View synonyms

Pronunciation

theoretical

/θiəˈrɛdək(ə)l//THēəˈredək(ə)l/