What Are Group Norms?

Group norms are the patterns and expectations within a group of people, including family, co-workers or neighborhoods. These group norms can determine how people interact and how they view people of other races and sexes as well. The amount of influence a group has on a person can vary depending on the group and the individual involved.

These influences are not immediately good or bad; this is ultimately dependent on the person being influenced. If the person is not easily influenced or accepting of the group dynamic, then the group may not be able to change that person’s views. Group norms can apply to small groups, like groups of friends, and extend all the way to whole races or countries. A prime example of a group norm is how people function and react to their given religion and what is seen as good and bad within it.