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tendency S3 W3 /ˈtendənsi/ noun (plural tendencies) [COUNTABLE]
[date : 1600-1700; Language : Medieval Latin; Origin : tendentia, from Latin tendere; ⇨ tend]
1. if someone or something has a tendency to do or become a particular thing, they are likely to do or become it
a tendency to do something
  ▪ Greg’s tendency to be critical made him unpopular with his co-workers.
  ▪ The drug is effective but has a tendency to cause headaches.
tendency to/towards
  ▪ Some people may inherit a tendency to alcoholism.
tendency for
  ▪ Researchers believe that the tendency for diabetes is present at birth.

2. a general change or development in a particular direction
there is a tendency (for somebody) to do something
  ▪ There is an increasing tendency for women to have children later in life.
tendency to/towards
  ▪ a general tendency towards conservation and recycling
tendency among
  ▪ a tendency among Americans to get married at a later age

3. aggressive/suicidal/criminal/artistic etc tendencies
a part of someone’s character that makes them likely to behave in a certain way or become an artist, criminal etc:
  ▪ children with aggressive or anti-social tendencies

a group within a larger political group that supports ideas that are usually more extreme than those of the main group:
  ▪ the growing fascist tendency
• • •
COLLOCATIONS (for Meanings 1 & 3)
a natural tendency (=one you are born with)
  ▪ His recent experiences had reinforced a strong natural tendency towards caution.
an inherent/innate tendency (=one that you are born with, which will not change)
  ▪ When attacked, some people have an inherent tendency to fight back.
a strong tendency
  ▪ There is a strong tendency to give dying patients far more drugs than are necessary.
a marked tendency (=noticeable)
  ▪ There is a marked tendency for Hollywood marriages to end in divorce.
aggressive/violent tendencies
  ▪ Some breeds of dog have aggressive tendencies.
suicidal tendencies
  ▪ They failed to inform the prison authorities of the man's suicidal tendencies.
criminal tendencies
  ▪ How should we deal with young people who have criminal tendencies?
artistic tendencies
  ▪ As he grew up, he displayed artistic tendencies.

suicidal tendencies (=behaviour that showed she wanted to kill herself)
For many years before treatment, Clare had suicidal tendencies .
More than half of those worst affected had aggressive and anti-social tendencies.
In Phoenix any aggressive tendencies were dampened by the location of these agencies within a government structure that frowned on federal aid.
The Asiaticus does not appear to have any aggressive tendencies and appears to be equally active during the day and night.
Learning theories have been much more important in positivist theorising about the acquisition of criminal tendencies.
Some highly general tendencies, which will necessarily be subject to subsequent refinement and caution, can serve to represent the scene.
The general tendency among long-time employees, said the study, is not to think of leaving.
The reorganisation of local government in 1974 was another event which undoubtedly accentuated the general tendency for local expenditure to grow.
Less obvious is Bourdieu s evidence that education fosters a general tendency towards the use of high culture.
First, like all others, it represents general tendencies rather than exact categories.
A general tendency towards making artillery lighter and more mobile can also be seen in the later decades of the century.
These moves have had little effect on psychology's general tendency to represent sexuality simply as heterosexuality.
But they were much more readily negotiable through association, which was already a basic general tendency in most other social activities.
Cemeteries show a greater tendency towards large collective tombs.
Low motor tone involves greater flexor tendencies.
In 1980 it showed the greatest tendency to revitalise and performed averagely on a decline in deprivation index.
The more volatile component is the one whose molecules have a greater tendency to escape into the vapour phase.
They also have a greater tendency to rate themselves as ambitious, highly sexed, strong-willed and well endowed.
Women from the higher classes have a greater tendency to stay single.
Overall, they found a greater tendency to underpricing.
Some people have a greater inherited tendency to depression than others.
There is a growing tendency for councils to give committees complete power to act on behalf of the council.
Nowadays, there is a growing tendency to include the physical states of the reactants and products in equations.
It was this growing tendency after 1983 which almost brought the government to its knees.
It so happens that another growing tendency in contemporary thinking has been undermining the whole approach which leads to it.
There was also a growing tendency to retain a certain amount of booty for personal use.
By the way, I notice an increasing tendency for her critics to psychoanalyse Mrs Thatcher.
In general, therefore, it constrains the increasing tendency for usefulness to mean more and more information.
In business organizations the increasing tendency has been to use the basic financial statements as a measure of performance.
Hence the increasing tendency for landlords to develop share-cropping tenancies to replace the crops they themselves found it more difficult to produce.
Three arguments are often raised to counter the increasing tendency towards in-depth work.
Fungicides have still got to be used, but there is an increasing tendency to use organic fertilisers.
This concentration of the market also came about because of the increasing tendency of the rate of profit to decline.
The natural tendency is to try harder with the project that has gone some distance.
Each one exaggerates her natural tendency under stress.
I have already mentioned that right-handed pilots seem to have a natural tendency to turn left.
Your goal is to understand these natural tendencies and use your understanding to help her find better ways to cope.
Mary's natural tendency to fly into a temper probably did not increase their chances very much.
The goal with the Louisas of the world is to help them learn how to go against their natural tendency.
Younger people have a natural tendency to believe that the science they practise has been extant for the whole of time.
There is a natural physical tendency to avoid activities that our nervous system tells us are difficult.
Smokey, warm and strong with a tendency to linger.
Sodium has a strong tendency to lose an electron and become the positively charged ion Na.
There's a strong suicidal tendency.
They thus exhibit a strong tendency to drag their feet as doomsday draws nearer.
There is a very strong tendency to take literally what needs imaginative interpretation.
Literate societies have a strong tendency to take writing as the norm of language.
Yet throughout her period of office there has been a strong authoritarian tendency.
Its sedative effects were valued, but sometimes progressed to pathological depression with suicidal tendencies, so its use was limited.
The rumbling row with the unions over ending the block vote is a classic example of its suicidal tendencies.
There's a strong suicidal tendency.
But what about the apparently bizarre link with an increased suicidal tendency?
Through a series of flashbacks, Judith's past is gradually explored, and you begin to take her suicidal tendencies seriously.
On the other hand the very same development increases their tendency to close their eyes to the future.
Law students tend to become more concerned with matters of proper procedure and exhibit an increased tendency to reason by analogy.
There is an increasing tendency to give more and more tests.
Cemeteries show a greater tendency towards large collective tombs.
The record shows a tendency to make a couple of kinds of particularly costly mistakes.
What research has shown is that these tendencies to behave in certain ways are deeply embedded in past experiences.
Our awareness of the euphemism is shown by our tendency to laugh at what we regard as false pretension.
In 1980 it showed the greatest tendency to revitalise and performed averagely on a decline in deprivation index.
The following case reports show the tendency to doubt the diagnosis and over investigate such patients.
The parliamentarians hit back by accusing Mr Obasanjo of overstepping his powers and showing dictatorial tendencies.
When it comes to dressing, she shows chameleon-like tendencies.
Can you discern an editorial leaning or tendency in the work they accept?
Class Status derives from the tendency of people to accord positive and negative values to human attributes and to distribute respect accordingly.
Her speech is badly slurred, and the tendency is to dismiss her as a drunk or a druggie.
It's then that you realise he keeps his psychotic tendencies hidden, only to be let out onstage.
Second, there is the tendency to hasten all those final writing chores, and this is a mistake.
The arrow represents a plausible evolutionary tendency of adaptability.
There is a tendency for illnesses to become more prolonged, less intense and for the recovery to be slower.

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