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 asa : a set standard of development or achievement usually derived from the average or median achievement of a large groupb : 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 classesc : 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 1vector 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 5a) or of the components of a vectorb : the greatest distance between two successive points of a set of points that partition an interval (see interval 2a) into smaller intervals
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.
Recent Examples of norm from the Web
May, which ended Wednesday, averaged 65.5 degrees overall, half a degree less than the norm for the month, according to National Weather Service figures.
Pop-up restaurants are the norm here, so don’t go looking for reservations in advance.
His velocity and pitch usage rates are right in line with career norms.
The fast rise and sustained voter support of Tea Party candidates has made fights between far-right and traditional Republicans a norm in Texas and the U.S. in recent years.
Nearby downtown Napa has meanwhile turned into a happening kind of place to be, which is not the norm for this usual sleepy town.
Another kind of road rager is someone who has a heightened sense that his or her personal rights are being violated, which ties into a cultural norm in the United States, Hakimi said.
Connections between town residents and drug traffickers were assumed to be the norm.
Imposing the kingdom’s religious norms goes beyond words:
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.
Origin and Etymology of norm
borrowed from Latin norma “carpenter's square, pattern,” probably borrowed from an Etruscan adaptation of Greek gnṓmōn “carpenter's square, indicator on a sundial” — more at gnomon
First Known Use: 1674
Synonym Discussion of norm
NORM Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of norm for English Language Learners
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 Defined for Kids
Medical Definition of norm
: an established standard or average: asa: a set standard of development or achievement usually derived from the average or median achievement of a large groupb: a pattern or trait taken to be typical in the behavior of a social group
Seen and Heard
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