General English


  • noun the self-control needed to do a job
  • verb to punish an employee for misconduct

Information & Library Science

  • noun a field of academic study


  • noun control which an army has over its soldiers’ actions and behaviour
  • noun rules and regulations which maintain control


  • noun the ability to behave in a controlled and calm way even in a difficult or stressful situation
  • noun mental self-control used in directing or changing behaviour, learning something or training for something
  • noun a particular field of activity within a wider context, e.g. the discipline of javelin within athletics or of the parallel bars within gymnastics

Origin & History of “discipline”

The Latin word for ‘learner’ was discipulus, a derivative of the verb discere ‘learn’ (which was related to docēre ‘teach’, source of English doctor, doctrine, and document). English acquired the word in Anglo-Saxon times, as discipul, and it was subsequently reformulated as disciple on the model of Old French deciple. Derived from discipulus was the noun disciplīna ‘instruction, knowledge’. Its meaning developed gradually into ‘maintenance of order (necessary for giving instruction)’, the sense in which the word first entered English (via Old French discipline).