size up


1. look at or consider someone/something carefully before forming a judgement or making a decision






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size up the competition/situation

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When you 'size something up' it means to look at something carefully and all of the information available before making a decision. When you 'size up' something it can also mean to make an estimate or a judgement about someone or a situation. Similar in meaning to 'weigh up' and 'make an assessment'. This is an informal phrasal verb used in social and professional contexts.

Check Icon Professional Examples (Advance)

  1. The company has been sizing up the United States as a possible new market for their product. If it does prove to be viable, they will look to launch there early next year.
  2. I paid a visit to the newly opened coffee shop to size up the competition. I was very impressed with what I saw.
  3. On my first day of class, I sized up all my students - I could tell that Daniel was more advanced than the others.

Check Icon Social Examples (Advance)

  1. When the issue with the project cropped up, Harry sized up the situation very quickly and figured out a way of resolving it. 
  2. I sized the guy up and thought better about punching him.

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