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Related to uptake: slow on the uptake

be (a little) slow on the uptake

To struggle to understand something. This phrase is often used as a euphemism for stupidity. Joe's a nice kid, but tutoring him is a challenge because he's a little slow on the uptake, you know? That group is slow on the uptake, so I don't know if they'll ever understand how to use this fancy new printer.
See also: on, slow, uptake

slow on the uptake

Stupid or dimwitted; slow or unable to understand something. Jim's a little slow on the uptake, so you might want to check that he's following your instructions. I was always a bit slow on the uptake as a kid, so school was never my favorite place to be.
See also: on, slow, uptake

quick on the uptake

quick to understand or learn something. Just because I'm not quick on the uptake, it doesn't mean I'm stupid. Mary understands jokes before anyone else because she's so quick on the uptake.
See also: on, quick, uptake

on the uptake

In understanding or comprehension. This term is most often put as quick on the uptake, for readily understanding something, and slow on the uptake, for being slow to comprehend. For example, Shirley will have no trouble learning that new computer program-she's very quick on the uptake . It alludes to absorbing ("taking up") information. [Early 1800s]
See also: on, uptake

slow on the uptake

If someone is slow on the uptake, they take a long time to understand or realise things. It's not like you to be slow on the uptake, Grace. He is quite anxious sometimes, and a bit slow on the uptake. Note: You can say that someone is quick on the uptake to mean that they understand or realise things very quickly. He is quick on the uptake and knows exactly which points to pick up.
See also: on, slow, uptake

be quick (or slow) on the uptake

be quick (or slow) to understand something. informal
See also: on, quick, uptake

be ˌquick/ˌslow on the ˈuptake

(informal) understand things quickly/understand even simple things with difficulty: He’s a very good worker but he’s a bit slow on the uptake sometimes. You have to explain everything twice.
See also: on, quick, slow, uptake
References in periodicals archive ?
Commenting on the success of the Department s Benefit Uptake Programme, the Chief Executive Officer of the Commissioner for Older People for Northern Ireland, Evelyn Hoy said: I am delighted by the success of the Department for Social Development s 2014/15 Benefit Uptake Programme.
The color change of the Populus was the main observation indicator, and dye uptake was the reference indicator.
In the coming months, Caterpillar will collaborate with Uptake and the Cat dealer network to roll out the latest predictive analytics and insights through web-based and mobile tools for customers.
Values of 2-NBDG uptake in the absence of insulin were subtracted from those obtained with insulin l00nM to establish 100% of specific 2-NBDG incorporation.
Uptake was stopped by washing the cells three times with ice-cold buffer and the cells were solubilised in 1 ml of 200 mM NaOH overnight (4[degrees]C).
FDG uptake in spironolactone-induced gynecomastia is also reported by Fukuchi, et al.
The uptake of oVOCs, the scientists concluded, appeared to be part of a larger metabolic cycle.
The CDC's HlNl vaccination data, which cover the period through the end of January 2010, also showed sharp variations in vaccine uptake based on people's age and whether they fell into one of the initial target groups for the vaccine, the agency reported (MMWR 2010;59:363-8).
7% in the previous year, the uptake rate is the highest in the country outside of London.
To our knowledge, little research has been conducted to determine whether phytoplankton assemblages vary in their uptake of nutrients across a temperature gradient within a reservoir.
HPV vaccination in the UK: acceptable uptake is possible in schools, but important practical barriers exist.
DENBIGHSHIRE had the highest uptake of the winter flu vaccination in Wales in 2007 to 2008.
Two studies of parents' attitudes to the vaccine have suggested that uptake would be between 70% and 80%, but no studies have been carried out of generalised acceptability.
He explains variation in uptake levels in terms of electoral vulnerability and in terms of institutional differences between the Senate and the House of Representatives, and also discusses variation in uptake over time.