The Meaning of Tenure: What It Is and How To Use It

Have you ever heard the word tenure used in reference to land or an academic career? This article will tell you all about the meaning of tenure.

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You might have heard someone who works in an academic field celebrate getting tenure, but what does this word mean? This article will explain the meaning of the word tenure in various contexts, the origin of the word tenure, examples of sentences containing tenure, translations, synonyms, and antonyms. Phew! That’s a lot to learn.

Keep reading to find out more about this interesting word!

What Does the Word Tenure Mean?

According to Vocabulary, the word tenure has a few meanings. First, it can be used as a noun to refer to the term during which someone holds a certain position or job. Tenure can also be used as a noun to reference a person’s right to hold a position permanently. This usage of tenure is most commonly found in academia.

Often, teachers and professors covet a permanent academic position at an academic institution such as a high school, college, or university. Academic positions, especially in higher education, can be very hard to come by, so having academic tenure and guaranteeing permanent work is highly valued. Other faculty members at a college include an adjunct professor, lecturer, or associate professor.

Tenure can also be used as a verb to refer to the giving of said guaranteed employment. Finally, land tenure refers to a right to hold property or real estate. This terminology comes from the ancient hierarchical system of landholding. Tenure is two syllables: ten-ure.

What Is the Etymology of the Word Tenure?

According to Dictionary, the word tenure has been used since Middle English in 1250 to 1300. This term comes from the Anglo-French and Old French teneure

These French terms have their roots in the Vulgar Latin tenitura, Medieval Latin tenitūra, and Latin tentus, which is the past participle of the Latin tenēre.

How Can We Use Tenure in a Sentence?

The word tenure can be used in several contexts, varying from academic positions to land ownership. Study the below example sentences containing the word tenure to understand the various uses of this word better.

The scholars weighed the advantages and disadvantages of job tenure while studying for their PhDs. The peers had seen the benefits of being a full professor and the lack of academic freedom in the long run.

The woman was ecstatic when her current employment position offered her tenure. She had not been working for the school for a very long time, but they saw her value. 

His work exchange program in England felt like a medieval form of land tenure, in which he works for hours a day in exchange for a measly dorm room. 

She could not get the legal right of tenure in the United States because of her Canadian visa. She was deported and devastated when she could not find a permanent teaching position.

What Are Translations of Tenure?

If you are trying to get a permanent job in another country or if you are discussing the concept of tenure with a person who does not speak English, you can study these translations of tenure from Nice Translator.

  • Lithuanian: Vartojimas
  • Malay: Tempoh
  • German: Amtszeit
  • Vietnamese: nhiệm kỳ
  • Slovak: držba
  • Marathi: कालावधी
  • Polish: tenuta
  • Catalan: titular
  • Arabic: فترة
  • Chinese (PRC): 保单
  • Serbian: мандат
  • Portuguese (Portugal): posse
  • Gujarati: જમીન હક
  • Bengali: মেয়াদ
  • Turkish: görev süresi
  • Finnish: toimeksianto
  • Basque: agintza
  • Spanish: tenencia
  • Kannada: ಅಧಿಕಾರಾವಧಿ
  • Latvian: īpašums
  • Korean: 보유
  • Estonian: ametiaeg
  • Ukrainian: перебування на посаду
  • Indonesian: masa jabatan
  • Welsh: ddeiliadaeth
  • Malayalam: കാലാവധി
  • Bulgarian: Тенктура
  • Hungarian: birtoklás
  • Swedish: uppdrag
  • Danish: fastgørelse
  • Hebrew: קְבִיעוּת
  • Russian: пребывание
  • Croatian: mandat
  • Chinese (Taiwan): 保單
  • Norwegian: tenure
  • Tamil: பதவி காலம்
  • Swahili: Umiliki
  • Dutch: dienstverband
  • Telugu: పదవీకాలం
  • Czech: držba
  • Urdu: دور
  • French: mandat
  • Japanese: ten
  • Italian: possesso
  • Portuguese (Brazil): posse
  • Hindi: कार्यकाल
  • Greek: κατοχή
  • Romanian: posesiune
  • Amharic: ተከራይ
  • Thai: การครอบครอง

What Are Synonyms of the Word Tenure?

Tenure is often associated with the academic world. If you need a similar word to tenure without the academic connotations, try using one of the below synonyms of tenure from Power Thesaurus.

  • administration
  • appointment
  • authority
  • barony
  • charter
  • claim
  • clamp
  • clasp
  • clench
  • clinch
  • clutch
  • control
  • custody
  • employment
  • freehold
  • governorship
  • grasp
  • grip
  • gripe
  • habitation
  • hold
  • holding
  • immovables
  • incumbency
  • inhabitancy
  • inhabitation
  • land tenure
  • lease
  • leasehold
  • mandate
  • maturity date
  • occupancy
  • occupation
  • office
  • ownership
  • period
  • period in office
  • period of office
  • permanence
  • permanency
  • position
  • possessing
  • possession
  • possessions
  • post
  • premiership
  • property
  • property law
  • proprietary rights
  • proprietorship
  • regime
  • reign
  • rental
  • residence
  • residency
  • security
  • stint
  • tenancy
  • tenantry
  • term
  • term of office
  • time
  • time constraints
  • time in office
  • title
  • warrant

What Are Antonyms of Tenure?

Power Thesaurus also provides antonyms of the word tenure, which refer to non-permanent employment.

  • casual labor
  • casual work
  • freelance job
  • interim employment
  • interim job
  • interim work
  • intermittent work
  • non-permanent employment
  • non-permanent job
  • non-permanent work
  • occasional employment
  • occasional work
  • part-time employment
  • part-time job
  • part-time work
  • partial employment
  • provisional job
  • short term employment
  • short-gap job
  • short-term employment
  • short-term job
  • short-term work
  • short-time working
  • temp job
  • temp work
  • temporary employment
  • temporary labor
  • temporary work
  • temporary working


The word tenure has a few different meanings. First, it can refer to a specified period of employment. Second, it can refer to permanent employment or the improved security status of a person concerning their permanent post. This use is mostly seen in academics.

Finally, tenure can refer to the part of an ancient hierarchical system in which a lord of the manor granted a parcel of land or piece of land to a peasant for their services. 


  1. Tenure synonyms – 453 Words and Phrases for Tenure | Power Thesaurus 
  2. Tenure Definition & Meaning | 
  3. Tenure – Definition, Meaning & Synonyms | 
  4. Temporary Job synonyms – 74 Words and Phrases for Temporary Job | Power Thesaurus 
  5. Tenure | Nice Translator