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1. One who has broad general knowledge and skills in several areas.
2. A species whose members are able to live in a wide variety of habitats or consume a wide variety of foods.

gen′er·al·ist adj.


(ˈdʒɛnərəlɪst; ˈdʒɛnrə-)
a. a person who is knowledgeable in many fields of study
b. (as modifier): a generalist profession.
2. (Biology) ecology an organism able to utilize many food sources and therefore able to flourish in many habitats. Compare specialist3


(ˈdʒɛn ər ə lɪst)

a person whose knowledge, aptitudes, and skills are applied to a field as a whole or to a variety of different fields (opposed to specialist).


a person who has knowledge, aptitude, or skill in a variety of areas, as contrasted with a specialist.
See also: Skill and Craft
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.generalist - a modern scholar who is in a position to acquire more than superficial knowledge about many different interests; "a statistician has to be something of a generalist"
bookman, scholar, scholarly person, student - a learned person (especially in the humanities); someone who by long study has gained mastery in one or more disciplines
specialiser, specialist, specializer - an expert who is devoted to one occupation or branch of learning


nGeneralist(in) m(f)
References in periodicals archive ?
VISITS TO PRIMARY CARE generalists, which made up two-thirds of the visits to physician offices in 1980, now represent less than half of all visits, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.
The majority of Scottish butterflies can be classed as specialists or generalists.
They usually engage with prospects and clients as either generalists or specialists.
11 of the rural generalists will be at Mackay while a further 10 will be at Cairns.
In proposing Q-List questions, I encourage individual generalists to add and subtract from my personal Q-List as they believe appropriate given the particular contexts of their practice environments and how they perceive the relational character of their work.
Top weed performers are typically generalists, capable of getting a roothold in disturbed environments, thriving under a diversity of conditions.
The Bureau of Human Resources compiled the 2013 Foreign Service Selection Board results by class for generalists and specialists, placing the data into tables that show promotion numbers, promotion rates, average time in class and average time in service for each competition group.
Generalists, working as part of a primary healthcare (PHC) approach, promote equity and better health status.
Specifically, we compare the likelihood of Odonata in Illinois to be lentic versus lotic or generalists versus specialists.
10) The question is never just whether specialists will outperform generalists in some abstract sense--it instead requires consideration of an array of factors, such as the nature of the field of specialization, the institutional context in which specialization is to be implemented, and so on.
When asked about specific music activities that they engaged in, generalists highlighted preparation of songs and other musical material for performances.
Other Western countries either have a 50:50 or 67:33 ratio of generalists to specialists.