Concept Synonym Guide — Definition, Antonyms & Examples

Synonyms are words that have similar meanings to another. They provide multiple perspectives or choices to convey a message without repeating the same word. A synonym for concept is the word ‘idea.’ Other synonyms are explored in detail in this article.

Definition of Concept

The word ‘concept’ is an English noun borrowed from Middle French concept and Latin conceptus (“a thought, purpose”). A concept is defined as a thought or idea, or a mental representation of reality.

The dictionary defines a concept as an understanding retained in the mind from experience, reasoning, and imagination. It is a generalization or abstraction of a particular set of instances or occurrences.

Sentence Examples

  • I’m not sure what the concept of global warming means.
  • The concept of dieting doesn’t sit well with me.
  • Climate change has a flawed concept.
  • The concept of being alone makes me sad and lonely.
  • The concept of a statistical outlier has been around for a while.
  • Chapter ten of the book presents the concept of what it means to be literate.
  • The concept of philosophy is not clear to me.
  • What’s your concept of bad parenting?
  • The concept of the word “science” is blurry to me.

Synonym for Concept — Exploring words with Similar Meanings

Words with similar meanings to the word ‘concept’ are idea, notion, abstraction, theory, conception, hypothesis, postulation, opinion, approach, and perception.


‘Idea’ comes from Greek ἰδέα idea “form, pattern,” from the root of ἰδεῖν idein, “to see.” An idea is a thought, opinion, view, or suggestion regarding a possible course of action. It is a notion that exists in mind due to mental activity, awareness, or understanding.

  • Wow, that’s a brilliant idea.
  • Nathan’s idea of becoming a medical doctor seems unrealistic.
  • I have a series of ideas about the project.
  • Jude had an idea of making a robot that would serve the healthcare industry.


‘Notion’ is from Latin nōtiō (“a conception, idea”), and from nōscere (“to know”). A notion is a mental apprehension of whatever may be known or imagined; idea, concept.

  • I don’t concur with this notion.
  • You have a most preposterous notion of what constitutes intelligence.
  • The notion that he believed me was laughable.
  • Political ideas have no absolute, self-evident notion behind them.


The word ‘abstraction’ is from Middle English’ abstraccyone’ and Latin abstrahō (“draw away”). Equivalent to abstract +‎ –ion. Abstraction is a notion or idea of an abstract or theoretical nature.

  • Daniel was fighting for mere abstractions.
  • Juliette’s abstraction is unrealistic.
  • With our current level of technology, the plan of colonizing Mars is merely an abstraction.


‘Conception’ is from Middle English concepcioun, borrowed from Old French conception andLatin conceptiō (“a comprehending, a collection, composition, an expression”). A conception is an image or notion formed in the mind; a plan, or design.

  • I don’t have the slightest conception of what you’re talking about.
  • Mary had a very loose conception of her rights.
  • You have a rather strict conception of who I was.
  • My conception of security has evolved over the years.


‘Perception’ originates from Middle English percepcioun, Middle French percepcion, Latin perceptiō (“a receiving or collecting, comprehension”), and perceptus (“perceived, observed”). Perception is how something is viewed, understood, or interpreted.

  • Perception is not just limited to the human brain.
  • Artificial sweeteners can confuse your sensory perception.
  • Our perception influences what we believe is possible.

Antonyms for Concept — Exploring Words with Opposite Meanings


Concrete is from Latin concrētus, past participle of concrescō (com- + crescō). The word describes actual, accurate, and tangible things, not abstract qualities.

  • You need concrete evidence to convince the judge that you’re not guilty.
  • There are concrete differences between sand and gravel.
  • Nathan’s story wasn’t concrete enough.


‘Proof’ originates from Middle English proof, Old French prove, Late Latin proba (“a proof”), and Latin probare (“to prove”). ‘Proof’ is an effort, process, or operation designed to establish or discover a fact or truth; an act of testing; a test; a trial.

  • With the proof we have, the criminal will be convicted.
  • The crime can only be verified with proof.
  • Do you have proof of these allegations?


‘Reality’ originates from French réalité (“quality of being real”), Middle French realité (“property, possession”), Medieval Latin reālitās, and Late Latin reālis (“real”), equivalent to real +‎ -ity. Reality is an actual entity or fact.

  • Reality dawned on Maxwell when he realized he had wasted so much time chasing frivolities rather than studying.
  • The reality is that we’re only managing to feel.
  • In reality, Jerry isn’t to blame for the mistake.
fountain pen and white spiral book on brown table
Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

To Wrap Up

‘Concept’ means “mental picture” of something. The term also describes a thought or abstract idea. A common synonym for concept is ‘idea.’ Other words with similar meanings are abstraction, conception, perception, and notion.

A synonym guide will help with your word choice and make your writing compelling and cohesive.

Pam is an expert grammarian with years of experience teaching English, writing and ESL Grammar courses at the university level. She is enamored with all things language and fascinated with how we use words to shape our world.

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