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noun scale pronunciation in American English /skeɪl/ 
Word Forms
  1. 1
    [singular/uncountable] the size of something, especially when it is big
    scale of:

    Is the Government aware of the full scale of the problem?

    on a large/small/grand/massive etc. scale:

    This is sculpture on a grand scale.

    1. a.
      the rate at which something is produced, developed, etc.
      scale of:

      The scale of production in the factory has increased this year.

    See also  economies of scale
  2. 2
    [countable] [usually singular] a set of people or things arranged in order from the highest level to the lowest or from the lowest level to the highest

    The rich are at the top of the social scale.

    At the other end of the scale are worms and the tiny sea creatures.

    1. a.
      a range of measurements in a particular system

      the Celsius scale of temperature

      on a scale of 1 to 10:

      Rate these movies on a scale of 1 to 10.

    2. b.
      a list showing the amount of money that someone should be paid for a particular job, according to their qualifications, experience, etc.

      Our scale of fees is shown on the next page.

      Expenses will be paid in accordance with the agreed scale.

      salary/pay/fee scale:

      The salary scale is $22,086 to $32,311.

      union scale (=the rate agreed by the employers and the workers' union for a job):

      We're required to pay union scale to everyone who works on-site.

  3. 3
    [countable/uncountable] the relationship between the actual distance or size of something and how it is shown on a map or in a drawing or model

    This map has a scale of 1:20,000.

    a scale of a half-inch to the mile

  4. 4
    [countable] [usually plural] a piece of equipment used for weighing people or things

    He weighed himself on the bathroom scale.

    a pair/set of scales

    See also  tip2


a paid holiday given to a new employee before they start their job

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