In social psychology, a group can be defined as two or more humans who interact with one another, accept expectations and obligations as members of the group, and share a common identity. By this definition, society can be viewed as a large group, though most social groups are considerably smaller.
A true group exhibits some degree of social cohesion and is more than a simple collection or aggregate of individuals, such as people waiting at a bus stop. Characteristics shared by members of a group may include interests, values, ethnic or social background, and/or kinship ties. According to Hare, the defining characteristic of a group is social interaction.
- Hare, A. P. (1962). Handbook of small group research. New York: Macmillan.