norm

noun
\ ˈnȯrm How to pronounce norm (audio) \

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

Review showed the slight lift of the foot - before replay, that never would have been questioned, with in-the-vicinity the norm - and there was no doubt Romine was safe. Susan Slusser, SFChronicle.com, "Profar, Seth Brown star again as A’s beat Yankees for fourth time," 30 Aug. 2019 At nine months, the program is longer than the norm and includes a section on basic computer science concepts. Gregory Barber, WIRED, "Lambda School's For-Profit Plan to Solve Student Debt," 26 Aug. 2019 Trump, with the complicit approval of the Republican Party, is systematically destroying democratic norms and our democracy in the process. Letters To The Editor, The Mercury News, "Letter: US at greater risk of becoming a fascist state than socialist," 20 Aug. 2019 Church leaders have occasionally issued similar clarifications based on changing social norms and eating and drinking habits, Mason said. Washington Post, "Java still a no-no for Mormons despite fancy coffee names," 16 Aug. 2019 In reality, self-driving cars are likely to overtake the market through a gradual shift in norms and features, a process that, Albert and Schwartz agree, has already begun. Nathan Heller, The New Yorker, "Was the Automotive Era a Terrible Mistake?," 22 July 2019 China and Russia have done so by invading countries, annexing foreign territory and building artificial islands to stake out huge territorial claims in direct violation of international norms and rulings. Ivo Daalder, Twin Cities, "Ivo Daalder: The real threat to liberalism is the U.S.’ unwillingness to defend it," 15 July 2019 Studies show that 80% of black women are likely to change their natural hair to conform to societal norms. Audrey Noble, Vogue, "New York State Follows California in Banning Hair Discrimination," 15 July 2019 In these circumstances, how will norms and rules for guiding and restraining strategy be established? The Atlantic, "The Metamorphosis," 11 July 2019

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

2 Sep 2019

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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

: standards of proper or acceptable behavior
: an average level of development or achievement
: something (such as a behavior or way of doing something) that is usual or expected

norm

noun
\ ˈnȯrm How to pronounce norm (audio) \

Kids Definition of norm

2 : a common practice

norm

noun
\ ˈnȯ(ə)rm How to pronounce norm (audio) \

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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