- The definition of acumen is the ability to quickly and accurately understand and deal with a situation or choice.
A person with common sense is an example of someone with acumen.
acumen definition by Webster's New World
Origin: Classical Latin a point, sting, mental acuteness ; from acuere, to sharpen ; from Indo-European base an unverified form a-: see acid
acumen definition by American Heritage Dictionary
Origin: Latin acūmen, from acuere, to sharpen, from acus, needle; see ak- in Indo-European roots.Usage Note: The pronunciation (ə-kyo͞oˈmən), with stress on the second syllable, is an older, traditional pronunciation reflecting the word's Latin origin. In recent years it has been supplanted as the most common pronunciation of the word by an Anglicized variant with stress on the first syllable, (ăkˈyə-mən). In a recent survey, 68 percent of the Usage Panel chose this as their pronunciation, while 29 percent preferred the pronunciation with stress on the second syllable. The remaining 3 percent of the Panelists said they use both pronunciations.