norm

noun
\ ˈnȯrm \

Definition of norm 

1 : an authoritative standard : model
2 : a principle of right action binding upon the members of a group and serving to guide, control, or regulate proper and acceptable behavior No society lacks norms governing conduct.— Robert K. Merton
3 : average: such as
a : a set standard of development or achievement usually derived from the average or median achievement of a large group
b : a pattern or trait taken to be typical in the behavior of a social group studies aimed at establishing the norms of sexual behavior among the middle classes
c : a widespread or usual practice, procedure, or custom standing ovations became the norm Bilingualism is the norm in many countries.
4a : a real-valued nonnegative function defined on a vector space with value analogous to length and satisfying the conditions that the function is zero if and only if the vector (see vector entry 1 sense 1a) is zero, the function of the product of a scalar and a vector is equal to the product of the absolute value of the scalar and the function of the vector, and the function of the sum of two vectors is less than or equal to the sum of the functions of the two vectors specifically : the square root of the sum of the squares of the absolute values of the elements of a matrix (see matrix sense 5a) or of the components of a vector
b : the greatest distance between two successive points of a set of points that partition an interval (see interval sense 2a) into smaller intervals

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Synonyms for norm

Synonyms

average, normal, par, standard

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Choose the Right Synonym for norm

average, mean, median, norm mean something that represents a middle point. average is the quotient obtained by dividing the sum total of a set of figures by the number of figures. scored an average of 85 on tests mean may be the simple average or it may represent value midway between two extremes. a high of 70° and a low of 50° give a mean of 60° median applies to the value that represents the point at which there are as many instances above as there are below. average of a group of persons earning 3, 4, 5, 8, and 10 dollars an hour is 6 dollars, whereas the median is 5 dollars norm means the average of performance of a significantly large group, class, or grade. scores about the norm for fifth grade arithmetic

Examples of norm in a Sentence

She scored well above the norm in math. Smaller families have become the norm. Women used to stay at home to take care of the children, but that's no longer the norm.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Trump does not seem to care very much for abiding by these two norms — nor, especially, does the modern Republican Party. Zack Beauchamp, Vox, "The 9 thinkers who made sense of 2018’s chaos," 27 Dec. 2018 That’s about the norm for late December at Yankee Stadium. Dan Gelston, The Seattle Times, "Miami, Wisconsin set to battle cold in frigid Pinstripe Bowl," 26 Dec. 2018 Emerging fashion brands, such as Palomo Spain and Gypsy Sport, have been instrumental in loosening up gender norms. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "2018 Was the Year of the Male Red Carpet Peacock," 15 Dec. 2018 Those outcomes, however, are the exception, not the norm. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "Snap’s former No. 2 exec Imran Khan is building an online shopping startup," 12 Nov. 2018 Bohemian design is generally inspired by those who lead a free-spirited, norm-defying life, like travelers, writers, artists, etc. Sienna Fantozzi, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need To Know About Bohemian Design," 19 Oct. 2018 Thinking outside of the norm, as the Novogratz typically do, the couple opted for white as a way to be subtle while still stunning, and to not dominate the space. Danielle Tullo, House Beautiful, "The Hidden Details In This Hotel Will Make You Never Want To Leave," 5 Nov. 2018 Spending the holidays with the in-laws isn't out of the norm, but the Royals are far from typical. Araceli Cruz, Teen Vogue, "Meghan Markle’s Mom Doria Ragland Reportedly Invited to Christmas at Sandringham," 5 Nov. 2018 The researchers say their work shows something that has been seen in studies of racial prejudice, for example—the impression of cultural norms is a major driver of behavior. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "You think your neighbors can drive energy conservation," 18 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'norm.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of norm

1674, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for norm

borrowed from Latin norma "carpenterʼs square, pattern," probably borrowed from an Etruscan adaptation of Greek gnṓmōn "carpenterʼs square, indicator on a sundial" — more at gnomon

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Dictionary Entries near norm

norito

norland

norlander

norm

norma

Norma

normal

Statistics for norm

Last Updated

7 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for norm

The first known use of norm was in 1674

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More Definitions for norm

norm

noun

English Language Learners Definition of norm

norms : standards of proper or acceptable behavior

the norm : an average level of development or achievement

the norm : something (such as a behavior or way of doing something) that is usual or expected

norm

noun
\ ˈnȯrm \

Kids Definition of norm

2 : a common practice

norm

noun
\ ˈnȯ(ə)rm \

Medical Definition of norm 

: an established standard or average: as
a : a set standard of development or achievement usually derived from the average or median achievement of a large group
b : a pattern or trait taken to be typical in the behavior of a social group

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More from Merriam-Webster on norm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with norm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for norm

Spanish Central: Translation of norm

Nglish: Translation of norm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of norm for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about norm

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