- (figuratively) A series of stages by which one progresses to a better position.
- In the game of go, a sequence of moves following a zigzag pattern and ultimately leading to the capture of the attacked stones.
- A frame, usually portable, of wood, metal, or rope, used for ascent and descent, consisting of two side pieces to which are fastened rungs: cross strips or rounds acting as steps.
- (chiefly Britain) A length of unravelled fabric in a knitted garment, especially in nylon stockings; a run.
- The hierarchy or ranking system within an organization, e.g. the corporate ladder.
- (of a knitted garment) To develop a ladder as a result of a broken thread.
- (firefighting) To ascend a building or wall using a ladder.