Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A majority is a subset of a group that is more than half of the entire group. This should not be confused with a plurality, which is a subset having the largest number of parts. A plurality is not necessarily a majority, as the largest subset may be less than half of the entire group.
For example, in a hypothetical group of 40 athletes there are:
In this group, a majority would consist of more than half the total number of athletes, or 21 athletes. The group of all ball sport players together (15 football players + 6 table tennis players = 21) comprise a majority. However, football players, 15 in number, comprise a plurality, not a majority.
In parliamentary procedure (the "rules of order" concerning the conduct of business in a deliberative body), the term 'majority' refers to "more than half." As it relates to a vote, a majority is more than half of the votes cast (noting that an abstention is simply the refusal to vote).
These concepts are not to be confused with the concept of a majority as understood in parliamentary procedure, which is a common error. While they do have counterparts in parliamentary procedure, in it they are undefined as termed, and their discussion is beyond the scope of this article.
Other kinds of majority include:
- the age of majority;
- a sociological majority;
- the condition of being a military officer called a major.
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