Meaning of PROCESS in English

I. pro ‧ cess 1 S1 W1 AC /ˈprəʊses $ ˈprɑː-/ BrE AmE noun [countable]

[ Word Family: noun : ↑ process , processing, ↑ procession , ↑ processor ; adjective : ↑ processed , ↑ processional ; verb : process]

[ Date: 1300-1400 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: proces , from Latin processus , from procedere ; ⇨ ↑ proceed ]

1 . a series of actions that are done in order to achieve a particular result:

the Israeli–Egyptian peace process

Repetition can help the learning process.

process of

the process of economic change

slow/lengthy/laborious etc process

Getting fit again has been a long slow process.

the mental processes involved in decision-making

2 . a series of things that happen naturally and result in gradual change

process of

the natural process of evolution

Coal forms by a slow process of chemical change.

the digestive process

3 . be in the process of (doing) something to have started doing something and not yet be finished:

The company is in the process of moving to new offices.

4 . be in process if something is in process, it is happening now:

There was an armed revolt in process.

5 . in the process while you are doing something or something is happening:

I spilt the coffee, burning myself in the process.

6 . process of elimination a way of finding the right answer, the truth etc by gradually deciding that none of the other answers etc are possible

by (a) process of elimination

I solved the problem by a process of elimination.

7 . a method of making or producing goods:

the car production process

Recycling is an industrial process.

⇨ ↑ due process

• • •

COLLOCATIONS (for Meanings 1 & 2)


▪ slow

Collecting the data is a slow process.

▪ long/lengthy

Try to be patient through the long process of healing.

▪ laborious (=taking a lot of time and effort)

The copying of manuscripts was a laborious process.

▪ complex

Getting a visa can be a complex process.

▪ a natural process

Birth is a natural process.

▪ a formal process

A decision will only be taken after a formal consultation process.

▪ a mental process

Cats have different mental processes from dogs.

▪ the learning process

The student is actively involved in the learning process.

▪ the peace process

They are frustrated with the lack of progress in the peace process.

▪ the decision-making process

Not all staff can participate in the decision-making process.

▪ a selection process

An interview normally forms part of the selection process.

■ verbs

▪ go through a process ( also undergo a process formal ) (=experience a process)

A lot of companies are going through a process of change.


The system underwent a process of simplification.

▪ take part in a process ( also participate in a process )

We encourage our clients to participate in the process at every stage.

• • •


▪ system an organized set of ideas, methods, actions etc that you use to do something:

the airport security system


the system for dealing with refugees

▪ process a series of actions that are done in order to achieve a particular result:

the process of teaching children to read


Repeat the same process, until all the sugar has dissolved.

▪ procedure the official or usually agreed way of doing something:

You must follow the normal complaints procedure.


Large companies have a standard procedure for informing new employees about conditions of work.

▪ formula a method or set of principles that you use to solve a problem or make sure that something is successful:

The team are hoping to use the same winning formula that they used last season.


There is no magic formula for success (=a method that is certain to succeed) .

II. process 2 AC BrE AmE verb [transitive]

1 . to make food, materials, or goods ready to be used or sold, for example by preserving or improving them in some way:

Goats’ cheese may be processed in many ways.

Two million workers are employed processing goods for electronic firms.

2 . to deal with an official document, request etc in the usual way

process an application/claim/transaction etc

All university applications are processed through this system.

3 . to deal with information using a computer:

The new network will enable data to be processed more speedily.

4 . to print a picture from a photographic film

⇨ ↑ data processing , ↑ word processor

• • •


▪ deal with something to take the necessary action, especially in order to solve a problem:

We need to deal with problems like pollution and climate change.


I spend most of my day dealing with customer enquiries.

▪ handle to deal with a problem or difficult situation by making particular decisions. Used especially when talking about how well or badly someone does this:

He handled the situation very well.


Most customers were happy with the way their complaints had been handled.

▪ tackle to start to deal with a problem, especially one that is complicated:

We need to tackle the issue of drugs in schools.


The government is introducing new measures to tackle online crime.

▪ see to/attend to somebody/something to deal with all the practical details of something that needs to be done or organized. Attend to is more formal than see to :

My son saw to all the funeral arrangements.


I have some business to attend to.

▪ take care of something to do the work or make the arrangements that are necessary for something to happen. Used especially when you do this for someone else so that they do not have to worry about it:

My secretary takes care of all the paperwork.

▪ process if a company or organization processes a letter, form etc, they do the things that are usually done as part of their official system, in order to deal with it:

It will take a minimum of 14 days to process your passport application.


I called their office, and they said that my request was still being processed.

III. pro ‧ cess 3 /prəˈses/ BrE AmE verb [intransitive always + adverb/preposition]

formal to walk or move along in a very slow and serious way, especially as part of a group

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