Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Topic: MEASUREMENT

Date: 1200-1300
Language: Old French
Origin: degré, from Latin gradus 'step, grade'

degree

noun
     
de‧gree S3 W1
1 [countable] written abbreviation deg.TM a unit for measuring temperature. It can be shown as a symbol after a number. For example, 70º means 70 degrees:
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
20 degrees Celsius/70 degrees Fahrenheit/1 degree Centigrade etc
The temperature dropped to five degrees Centigrade.
2 [countable] written abbreviation deg. a unit for measuring the size of an angle. It can be shown as a symbol after a number. For example, 18º means 18 degrees:
Then the cylinder is rotated 180 degrees.
3 [uncountable and countable] the level or amount of something
degree of
1960s Britain was characterised by a greater degree of freedom than before.
Newspapers vary in the degree to which they emphasize propaganda rather than information.
4

to a degree

also to some degree/to a certain degree partly:
To a degree, it is possible to educate oneself.
We're all willing to support him to some degree.
5 [countable] a course of study at a university or college, or the qualification that is given to you when you have successfully completed the course
degree in
a degree in Economics
Applicants must have a degree in Engineering.
an Honours degree
6

by degrees

very slowly [= gradually]:
By degrees, Huy forced himself into a sitting position.
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