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Measure up: meaning and explanation

The phrasal verb to measure up means to be good enough, or as good as expected or required.

If you say that something doesn’t measure up, then it is not at the required standard, it isn’t good enough.

We can use to measure up to something to specify what we’re comparing something to. If a new employee doesn’t measure up to their predecessor (the person who did their job before them), then they are not as good as them.

Here’s an example in a Scottish accent:

, .
three brothers, be hard .

Here’s another example (in an RP accent):

And another example, this time in a North American accent:

And one last example, also in a North American accent:

Extra practice

Here are some questions/links to help you learn the new vocabulary:

  • Have you ever experienced a situation where you or someone else didn’t measure up to expectations? How did you handle the disappointment or frustration that followed?
  • Do you measure up to your own expectations for yourself?
  • In what situations do you feel pressure to measure up to certain standards or expectations? How do you typically respond to this pressure?

Photo by William Warby on Unsplash

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