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sex assigned at birth (SAAB)

Definition of Sex Assigned at Birth

(noun) The label, typically male or female, given to an infant based on medical standards for sex characteristics.

Sex Assigned at Birth Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: sex as·signed at birth

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /sEks uh-sIEnd uht bUHRth/
  • British English – /sEks uh-sIEnd UHt bUHRth/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /sɛks əˈsaɪnd æt bɜrθ/
  • British English – /sɛks əˈsaɪnd æt bɜːθ/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: sexes assigned at birth
  • Abbreviation: SAAB
  • These standards are based on external genital appearance. Some nations such as Germany are now allowing infants to be categorized as intersex at birth.
  • MAAB indicates male assigned at birth and FAAB indicates female assigned at birth.

Additional Information

Related Terms


Cite the Definition of Sex Assigned at Birth

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2017. “sex assigned at birth.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved August 7, 2020 (https://sociologydictionary.org/sex-assigned-at-birth/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

sex assigned at birth. (2017). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/sex-assigned-at-birth/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2017. “sex assigned at birth.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed August 7, 2020. https://sociologydictionary.org/sex-assigned-at-birth/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“sex assigned at birth.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2017. Web. 7 Aug. 2020. <https://sociologydictionary.org/sex-assigned-at-birth/>.