Meaning of SCAN in English


/ skæn; NAmE / verb , noun

■ verb ( -nn- )


[ vn ] scan sth (for sth) to look at every part of sth carefully, especially because you are looking for a particular thing or person

SYN scrutinize :

He scanned the horizon for any sign of land.

She scanned his face anxiously.


scan (through) sth (for sth) to look quickly but not very carefully at a document, etc. :

[ vn ]

I scanned the list quickly for my name.

[ v ]

She scanned through the newspaper over breakfast.


[ vn ] to get an image of an object, a part of sb's body, etc. on a computer by passing X-rays , ultrasound waves or electromagnetic waves over it in a special machine :

Their brains are scanned so that researchers can monitor the progress of the disease.


[ vn ] ( of a light, radar , etc. ) to pass across an area :

Concealed video cameras scan every part of the compound.


[ v , vn ] ( computing ) ( of a program ) to examine a computer program or document in order to look for a virus :

This software is designed to scan all new files for viruses.


[ vn ] ( computing ) to pass light over a picture or document using a scanner in order to copy it and put it in the memory of a computer :

How do I scan a photo and attach it to an email?


[ v ] ( of poetry ) to have a regular rhythm according to fixed rules :

This line doesn't scan.


- scan sth into sth | scan sth in

■ noun


[ C ] a medical test in which a machine produces a picture of the inside of a person's body on a computer screen after taking X-rays :

to have a brain scan


[ C ] a medical test for pregnant women in which a machine uses ultrasound to produce a picture of a baby inside its mother's body :

to have a scan


[ sing. ] the act of looking quickly through sth written or printed, usually in order to find sth



late Middle English (as a verb in sense 5): from Latin scandere climb (in late Latin scan (verses)), by analogy with the raising and lowering of one's foot when marking rhythm. From analyse (metre) arose the senses estimate the correctness of and examine minutely , which led to look at searchingly (late 18th cent.).

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.