Meaning of ESTIMATE in English


I. es ‧ ti ‧ mate 1 S3 W2 AC /ˈestəmət, ˈestɪmət/ BrE AmE noun [countable]

[ Word Family: noun : ↑ estimate , ↑ estimation , ↑ estimator , ↑ overestimate ≠ ↑ underestimate ; verb : ↑ estimate , ↑ overestimate ≠ ↑ underestimate ; adjective : ↑ estimated ]

1 . a calculation of the value, size, amount etc of something made using the information that you have, which may not be complete:

We just need an estimate of the number of people who will come.

2 . a statement of how much it will probably cost to build or repair something

estimate for

The garage said they’d send me an estimate for the work.

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COLLOCATIONS (for Meanings 1 & 2)

■ verbs

▪ make an estimate

Insurers have to make an estimate of the risk involved.

▪ give an estimate

The builder gave me an estimate of £10,000.

▪ provide (somebody with) an estimate

Could you ask him if he can provide us with an estimate?

▪ put an estimate on something (=say the amount that you think something is)

It is impossible to put an estimate on the value of the manuscript.

▪ an estimate puts something at something

Independent estimates put the number of refugees at 50,000.

▪ base an estimate on something (=use something as information to give an estimate)

The government based its estimate on data from the 2008 census.

■ adjectives

▪ a rough/approximate estimate (=not exact)

Can you give me a rough estimate of how much the repairs will cost?

▪ an accurate/reliable estimate (=fairly exact)

It’s hard to put an accurate estimate on the number of people affected.

▪ a conservative estimate (=deliberately low)

By conservative estimates, 2.5 million people die each year from smoking cigarettes.

▪ an official estimate (=accepted by people in authority)

According to official army estimates, more than 500 rebels had been killed.

▪ current/recent estimates (=ones that are accepted now)

According to current estimates, the country can expect 200,000 visitors in the next three years.

▪ the latest estimates (=the most recent ones)

The latest estimates are that sea levels could rise by about 20 cm by 2050.

▪ earlier/previous estimates

These amounts are much higher than those given in previous estimates.

▪ the original estimate (=the one given at the beginning of a process)

The final cost was nearly three times the original estimate.

■ phrases

▪ according to an estimate

According to some estimates, an acre of forest is cleared every minute.

▪ estimates range/vary from ... to ...

Estimates of the number of homeless people in the city range from 6,000 to 10,000.

II. es ‧ ti ‧ mate 2 S3 W2 AC /ˈestəmeɪt, ˈestɪmeɪt/ BrE AmE verb [transitive]

to try to judge the value, size, speed, cost etc of something, without calculating it exactly

be estimated to be/have/cost etc

The tree is estimated to be at least 700 years old.

estimate something at something

Organizers estimated the crowd at 50,000.

estimate that

Scientists estimate that smoking reduces life expectancy by around 12 years on average.

estimate how many/what etc

It is not easy to estimate how many people have the disease.

—estimated adjective :

heroin with an estimated street value of £50,000

—estimator noun [countable]

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▪ calculate formal to find out an amount, price, or value by adding numbers together:

The students calculated the cost of printing 5000 copies of their book.

▪ work out to calculate something. Work out is less formal than calculate , and is more common in everyday English:

You need to work out how much you will need to borrow.

▪ figure out ( also figure American English ) informal to calculate an amount:

We still haven't figured out how much it's all going to cost.


the method for figuring welfare payments

▪ count to find out the total number of things or people in a group by looking at each one and adding them all together:

The teacher counted the children as they got on the bus.

▪ total ( also total up ) to add a number of things together to get a final number:

Once the scores have been totaled, we will announce the winner.


Okay, now let's total up who had the most points.

▪ quantify formal to say how much something costs, how much of it there is, how serious or effective it is etc:

I think it's difficult to quantify the cost at the moment, for a variety of reasons.


How do you quantify the benefits of the treatment?


a reliable method for quantifying the amount of calcium in the blood

▪ assess formal to calculate what the value or cost of something is, or decide how good, bad etc something is:

The value of the paintings was assessed at $20 million.


They are still assessing the damage.


We need to have a better way of assessing students' progress.

▪ estimate to guess an amount, price, or number as exactly as you can, based on the knowledge you have:

The police department estimates that the number of violent crimes will decrease by 2%.

▪ put a figure on something to say what you think the exact total amount or value of something is, especially when it is a lot:

It's hard to put a figure on it, but the final cost is likely to be over £225 million.


The company has refused to put a figure on its losses.

▪ project to calculate what an amount will be in the future, using the information you have now:

The company projects sales of $4 million this year.

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In everyday English, people often say put something at an amount rather than estimate something at :

The damage was put at thousands of dollars.

[ Word Family: noun : ↑ estimate , ↑ estimation , ↑ estimator , ↑ overestimate ≠ ↑ underestimate ; verb : ↑ estimate , ↑ overestimate ≠ ↑ underestimate ; adjective : ↑ estimated ]

[ Date: 1500-1600 ; Language: Latin ; Origin: past participle of aestimare 'to think important' ]

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.