When it comes to the plural form of ‘criteria,’ there is often confusion about whether it should be ‘criteria’ or ‘criterias.’
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, ‘criteria’ is the plural form of ‘criterion.’
Although “criteria” is commonly used as a plural noun, evidence shows that it is frequently being used as a singular noun as well. This usage is similar to other words like “data” and “agenda,” which have both a singular and plural form.
Traditionally, ‘criteria’ is plural, and ‘criterion’ is singular. These reflect the Latin forms. Although most dictionaries and usage authorities still make this distinction, ‘criterion’ is likely to go the way of ‘datum’ and ‘agendum’ (which are only used by small groups of English speakers).
While ‘criteria’ can be considered as a singular or plural noun, treating it as singular might irk some of your readers. It is recommended to use ‘criterion’ for the singular form to avoid confusion.
Here are a few examples of how to use “criteria” and “criterion” correctly in sentences:
- The criteria for admission to the program are strict.
- The criterion for success in this field is attention to detail.
- The committee used a set of criteria to evaluate the proposals.
- The company has established a new criterion for measuring employee performance.
Is ‘Criterias’ a Correct English Word?
To give you the straight answer, no. “Criterias” is not a correct English word and should not be used in any context.
As we mentioned earlier, “criteria” is a plural noun, and its singular form is “criterion.” While some people mistakenly use “criterias” as the plural form, this is not grammatically correct and can be considered a mistake in English writing.
Confusion with Other Plural Forms
When it comes to the English language, it is not uncommon to find confusion with other plural forms such as data, datum, agenda, and agendum. These words are similar to criteria in that they have both plural and singular forms. However, their usage can be different depending on the context.
‘Data’ and ‘datum’ are often used interchangeably, but ‘data’ is the plural form, and ‘datum’ is the singular. In contrast, ‘criteria’ and ‘criterion’ are also similar, but ‘criterio’n is the singular form, and ‘criteria’ is the plural. Remember that while criteria is the plural form, it is frequently being used as a singular form as well.
‘Agenda’ and ‘agendum’ are also often used interchangeably, but ‘agenda’ is the plural form, and ‘agendum’ is the singular. Similarly, ‘bacteria’ and ‘bacterium’ are also similar, but ‘bacteria’ is the plural form, and ‘bacterium’ is the singular.
The confusion with these plural forms can be attributed to the fact that they have a common suffix ‘-a’ or ‘-um’. However, the suffix alone cannot determine the usage of the word. It is crucial to understand the context and usage of the word to determine whether it is a singular or plural form.
To help with the confusion, here are some tips:
- When referring to more than one point or standard, use criteria.
- When referring to a single point or standard, use criterion.
- When referring to more than one piece of information, use data.
- When referring to a single piece of information, use datum.
- When referring to more than one item on a list, use agenda.
- When referring to a single item on a list, use agendum.
Usage in Different Contexts
When it comes to using “criteria” in different contexts, there are a few things to keep in mind. Here are some examples of how “criteria” might be used in different situations:
- In testing: When creating a test, you might have certain criteria that students must meet in order to pass. For example, a math test might have criteria like “solve at least 75% of the problems correctly” or “show your work on all questions.”
- In judging: If you’re a judge in a competition, you might use certain criteria to evaluate participants. For example, a cooking competition might have criteria like “taste,” “presentation,” and “originality.”
- In business: When making decisions about which projects to pursue or which employees to hire, you might use certain criteria to help you make those decisions. For example, you might have criteria like “potential for growth” or “ability to work well in a team.”
- In writing: When writing an essay or report, you might have certain criteria that you need to meet in order to receive a good grade. For example, your teacher might have criteria like “use at least three sources” or “include a clear thesis statement.”
- In speech: When giving a speech, you might have certain criteria that you want to meet in order to be effective. For example, you might have criteria like “use clear and concise language” or “engage the audience with anecdotes.”
In all of these contexts, “criteria” is used to refer to a set of standards or requirements that must be met. Whether you’re testing, judging, making business decisions, writing, or speaking, having clear criteria can help you make better choices and achieve your goals.
Examples of Using ‘Criteria’ as a Plural Form
Here are more examples of how to use “criteria” correctly in a sentence:
- The hiring manager reviewed the candidates’ resumes and evaluated them based on several criteria, including their education, work experience, and relevant skills.
- To qualify for the scholarship, applicants must meet specific criteria, such as maintaining a high GPA and demonstrating leadership skills.
- The team developed a list of criteria for selecting the best vendor, including cost, quality, and customer service.
As you can see, “criteria” is used to refer to multiple standards or requirements that must be met. It is important to note that while “criteria” is technically a plural noun, it is often used as if it were singular.
Using “criteria” correctly in a sentence involves understanding its plural form and using it appropriately when referring to multiple standards or requirements.