Skip main navigation

What is repetition?

Repetition is the act of performing an action (or actions) multiple times, such as when you do repeated exercises at the gym, known as reps.

Repetition is the act of performing an action (or actions) multiple times. For instance, people often do repeated exercises at the gym, known as reps.

Repetition in action

To illustrate this, if you were instructing someone to do ten press-ups, you could say:

“do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up
do a press-up”

Push-Up Robot

But what if you wanted to instruct them to do 40 press-ups? Or 100? A better (more efficient) way would be to say:

“Do 40 press-ups”

In this case, you’re simply asking them to repeat the task of performing a press-up, 40 times.

Less immediate repetition

In another example of repetition, you might regularly attend a meeting, or sit down to watch your favourite TV programme. This event might be repeated each week, month or term. If you were to add this event to a calendar, you’d be given options for describing the repetition.

Calendar Repetition

In the calendar above, you can to specify the frequency of the repetition (weekly, monthly, every four weeks, etc.) as well as how many times to repeat the event. You can repeat the event forever, a set number of times, or until a specified date in the future.

Meeting a condition

Repeating until a condition is met is seen in a game of football, which is played until the referee blows the final whistle.

Calendar Repetition

Now you’ve seen some examples of repetition in everyday life, look our for some of your own.

This article is from the free online

Teaching Programming in Primary Schools

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education