AskDefine | Define midterm

Dictionary Definition



1 the middle of the gestation period
2 middle of an academic term or a political term in office
3 an examination administered in the middle of an academic term [syn: midterm examination, midterm exam]

User Contributed Dictionary



(US) IPA: /ˈmɪdˌtərm/


  1. relating to something that happens halfway through a term
    • The administration is suffering from the usual midterm drop in approval ratings.

Derived terms


  1. a midterm exam
    • I only got a C on the midterm, so I really have to study for the final.

Extensive Definition

Midterm elections are elections in the United States in which members of Congress, state legislatures, and some state governors are elected, but not the president.
On the Tuesday following the first Monday in November of every even-numbered year, elections are held for all 435 members of the United States House of Representatives and 33 or 34 of the 100 members of the United States Senate. However, Presidential elections occur only every four years. Those elections for Congress that do not coincide with Presidential races are called midterm elections, because they occur about midway through a Presidential term. They occur in years that leave a remainder of two when divided by four.
Thirty-four of the 50 U.S. states elect their governors to four-year terms during midterm elections, while Vermont and New Hampshire elect governors to two-year terms in midterm and presidential elections. Thus, 36 governors are elected during midterm elections. States also elect officers to their state legislatures and county offices every two years, occurring with both mid-terms and presidential years.
The next midterm elections for the House, Senate, and governorships are scheduled for November 2, 2010.

Recent Midterm elections

Midterm elections usually don't turn out well for the party of the president; over the past 17 midterm elections, the president's party has lost an average 28 seats in the House, and an average 4 seats in the Senate.
midterm in German: Halbzeitwahlen in den Vereinigten Staaten
midterm in Persian: انتخابات میان‌دوره‌ای در ایالات متحده آمریکا
midterm in Indonesian: Pemilu paruh waktu
midterm in Italian: Elezioni di metà mandato negli Stati Uniti
midterm in Japanese: 中間選挙

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

audition, blue book, exam, examen, examination, final, final examination, great go, hearing, honors, midsemester, oral, oral examination, prelim, quiz, take-home examination, test, trial, tripos, viva, written, written examination
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