- The definition of indeterminate is something vague or not established.
- When no one is sure what caused a fire to start, this is an example of when the cause is indeterminate.
- When you add a pinch of sugar to a recipe but there's no set amount, this is an example of when the amount is indeterminate.
- When a person is on probation until his behavior indicates he has become a law abiding citizen, this is an example of an indeterminate sentence.
indeterminate definition by Webster's New World
- not determinate; specif.,
- inexact in its limits, nature, etc.; indefinite; uncertain; vague: an indeterminate amount
- not yet settled, concluded, or known; doubtful or inconclusive
- Bot. racemose
Origin: Late Latin indeterminatus
indeterminate definition by American Heritage Dictionary
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
- a. Not precisely determined, determinable, or established: a person of indeterminate age.b. Not precisely fixed, as to extent, size, nature, or number: an indeterminate number of plant species in the jungle.c. Lacking clarity or precision, as in meaning; vague: an indeterminate turn of phrase.d. Not fixed or known in advance: an indeterminate future.e. Not leading up to a definite result or ending: an indeterminate campaign.
- Botany Not terminating in a flower and continuing to grow at the apex: an indeterminate inflorescence.
Origin: Middle English, from Latin indēterminātus : in-, not; see in-1 + dēterminātus, determined; see determinate.
- inˌde·terˈmi·nate·ly adverb
- inˌde·terˈmi·nate·ness, inˌde·terˌmi·naˈtion noun
indeterminate - Science Definition
Continuing to grow at the apical meristem or the terminal bud indefinitely, allowing for the development of an ever-increasing number of plant organs such as leaves, stems, or flowers to the side.