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see abbreviationabbreviation,
in writing, arbitrary shortening of a word, usually by cutting off letters from the end, as in U.S. and Gen. (General). Contraction serves the same purpose but is understood strictly to be the shortening of a word by cutting out letters in the middle, the omission
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An identifier formed from some of the letters (often the initials) of a phrase and used as an abbreviation. This dictionary contains a great many acronyms; see the contents page for a list.

See also TLA.


A word typically made up of the first letters of two or more words; for example, BASIC stands for "Beginners All purpose Symbolic Instruction Code." Letters within a word are also used; for example, XML means "eXtensible Markup Language."

Technically, if only first letters are used, the term is an "initialism," but this distinction is not widely made. For an excellent acronym resource, visit See backronym.
References in periodicals archive ?
According to the participant observation and questions asked of Koreans, the acronym IMF was manifested in the following ways.
For instance, with the acronym 'IR', x might represent the word 'Information' and y the word 'Retrieval'.
I call my campaign GROAN - Get Rid Of Acronyms Now.
That is, avoid jargon and acronyms to keep communications clear.
The Acronyms, Initialisms and Abbreviations Dictionary (AIAD for short, of course) was first published in 1960 and is now in its 14th edition, which was published in 1990.
Acronyms, abbreviations and initials are starting to take over our life.
Many of the acronyms come from business, such as the well known ASAP for As Soon As Possible and EOD for End Of Discussion.
The extra attention lavished on studies tagged with acronyms could encourage doctors to apply the knowledge generated by those studies, researchers at the University of Toronto suggest in the July 6 New England Journal of Medicine.
an acronym for personal empowerment through type, is a teaching and learning style assessment and management tool based on the psychological type work of Carl Jung.
Its acronym, DNA, celebrates dance as the building block of life.
Rather, it began as an in-house acronym for Internet Media Review's Media Quote Daily.