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Definition of Tendency

(noun) An inclination; propensity.

Example of Tendency

  • Individuals have a tendency to be left-handed or right-handed.

Tendency Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: ten·den·cy

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /tEn-duhn-see/
  • British English – /tEn-duhn-see/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /ˈtɛndənsi/
  • British English – /ˈtɛndənsi/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: tendencies
  • sociologist (adverb) tendentiously or (adverb) tendenciously or (adverb) tendentially or (adverb) tendencially views the world through the sociological lens to create (adjective) tendential (adjectivetendentious or (adjectivetendencious research that has sociological (noun) tendentiousness or (noun) tendenciousness.

Related Quotation

Additional Information

Related Terms


Catton, William R. 1960. “The Functions and Dysfunctions of Ethnocentrism: A Theory.” Social Problems 8(3):201–11. doi:10.2307/798910.

Cite the Definition of Tendency

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2015. “tendency.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved June 18, 2024 (https://sociologydictionary.org/tendency/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

tendency. (2015). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/tendency/

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

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2015. “tendency.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed June 18, 2024. https://sociologydictionary.org/tendency/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“tendency.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2015. Web. 18 Jun. 2024. <https://sociologydictionary.org/tendency/>.