[n] in the theories of Jean Piaget: the application of a general schema to a particular instance
[n] the process of assimilating new ideas into an existing cognitive structure
[n] a linguistic process by which a sound becomes similar to an adjacent sound
[n] the process of absorbing nutrients into the body after digestion
[n] the social process of absorbing one cultural group into harmony with another
[n] the state of being assimilated; people of different backgrounds come to see themselves as part of a larger national family
\As*sim`i*la"tion\, n. [L. assimilatio: cf. F. assimilation.]
1. The act or process of assimilating or bringing to a resemblance, likeness, or identity; also, the state of being so assimilated; as, the assimilation of one sound to another. To aspire to an assimilation with God. --Dr. H. More. The assimilation of gases and vapors. --Sir J. Herschel.
2. (Physiol.) The conversion of nutriment into the fluid or solid substance of the body, by the processes of digestion and absorption, whether in plants or animals. Not conversing the body, not repairing it by assimilation, but preserving it by ventilation. --Sir T. Browne. Note: The term assimilation has been limited by some to the final process by which the nutritive matter of the blood is converted into the substance of the tissues and organs.