Difference Between Rules and Standards

Rules vs Standards

We are subject to rules and regulations in all environments and circumstances. Rules serve to guide our behavior at all times. There is another term that is referred to as standards and confuses many because of the connotations and a meaning that is similar to rules. Despite similarities, there are subtle differences between rules and standards that will be highlighted in this article.


Rules are statements that comes from the top or the authority and that are meant to guide the behavior and action of all those in a particular environment. Rules govern not just action and behavior but also arrangement and even procedures in institutions. In general, rules play the most important role of guiding our behavior and conduct in a particular situation. Rules are authoritative in nature, and people have to follow them in a particular situation. People know what to do and what not to do in a specific situation.


Standards are often published documents that lay down specifications and procedures. These standards ensure that quality of materials and products remain high and consistent. These standards provide a clear understanding of what is required from employees, students, and other people in an environment to maintain quality. Standards also help people in having a clear understanding of what is required of them.

What is the difference between Rules and Standards?

• Rules are guidelines that are meant to guide the actions, behaviors, and conducts of people working in a particular situation or environment.

• Standards are written documents that are meant to maintain high quality and consistency of materials and products though they are also applicable to learning and other abstract concepts.

• People set high standards for themselves, and they are disappointed when they are unable to maintain them.

• Rules are authoritative in nature and come from above. They are meant to be strictly followed to maintain a particular standard.

• If there is a rule in an institution that people should keep hair short, individual sporting long hairstyle is warned or penalized to make him follow the rule.


You may also be interested in reading:

1. Difference Between Rules and Policies

2. Difference Between Laws and Rules

3. Difference Between Standard and Framework