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The Purpose of Primary and Secondary Groups

Updated on February 9, 2014
Cooperation | Source

Everyone of us is involved in primary and secondary groups even if we don't know it. You may be surprised of how many groups you're already in now or have been involved with in the past.

Classification of Groups

Once you have noted all of the groups you are involved in, the classification of groups according to their major purposes is easy. First, identify the following aspects:

  • The purpose of the group
  • How the group first formed
  • How and why the group is important
  • How satisfied are you with the group

Examples of Primary & Secondary Groups

I'll give examples of primary and secondary groups I am involved with to explain. The groups I am and have been involved with include my family, friends, peers, study groups, a problem solving group, and a decision-making group.

My family, friends, and an informal clique of my peers are my primary groups. My secondary groups are made up of my peers who I work with on projects these are my decision-making, problem-solving and study groups.

My primary groups serve to fulfill my basic needs to associate with others. My secondary groups help me to accomplish tasks and achieve goals.

Family | Source

Family as a Primary Group

For example, my family’s purpose as one of my primary groups is to bring companionship to one another. My family asserts influence on each of my family members and to bring satisfaction of being apart of a family.

The obvious way my family was formed was by my parents. My family is important to me because they are always there when I need them. I have a sense of safety and belonging in my family. They also influence my self esteem. I am happy to be apart of my family.

Peers | Source

Peers as a Secondary Group

One of my secondary groups is the decision-making study group I am in for one of my classes.This group’s purpose is to accomplish the task of putting together a research paper. This group first formed by the professor assigning each member to the group.

My group for the class is important to me because I along with the other members need this group to finish our research paper. I'm satisfied with a group because we're all working to accomplish our goal to do well in the class.

Friends | Source

Friends as a Primary Group

I think friends are important in primary groups but family is the most important. I also used the group I am in for a class as an example of one of my secondary groups. My group for the class will help me and the other members to accomplish our goal of getting a good grade in class.

I used my family as an example of one of my primary groups. I believe that family is an important part of most people's lives. As a primary group the family is companionship and safety for people. And family is more important for fulfilling the basic needs people have to associate with others.

I have not been apart of a quality circle yet. I think it is interesting how everyday or weekly events, like a staff meeting are actually a distinct type of a small group.


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