Currently I am studying the period of oceanographic phenomena such as El Niño, and I have seen the next concepts: interannual, annual and intrannual and interseasonal, seasonal and intraseasonal. I can understand some of them, but I would like someone could help me to understand them very well in the context of Oceanography. Maybe if you provide me with some literature about those definitions it would be great? Thanks.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I changed the wording of the question to "what do they mean", because I think you are asking about the meaning, not mean values. If I was wrong, just change it back. $\endgroup$
    – user29219
    Oct 2, 2023 at 9:30
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "Intra" means inside, "Inter" means between or crossing $\endgroup$
    – John
    Oct 8, 2023 at 12:29

1 Answer 1


I doubt there is literature, apart from dictionaries, it's simple semantics:

  • interannual: from year to year
  • annual: yearly
  • intrannual: during the course of a year
  • interseasonal: from season to season, or between seasons
  • seasonal: during a season
  • intraseasonal: during a season

The seasonal stuff can depend on the context, as seasons fall differently over the surface of the earth. It also depends on context if someone is talking about a point in time, or a period, a punctual observation or a trend or development. These terms just help framing (that's a cool word) the subject at hand.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.