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					         Sociology
             &
The Sociological Perspective


              David L. Strickland
          Introduction to Sociology
            East Georgia College
   (Reading: Chapter 1 - Nature and Uses of Sociology)
     Objectives
     Upon completion of this lesson the student will be able to …
1.    Define sociology and identify several areas of
      investigation by sociologists.
2.    Identify the components of the sociological perspective.
3.    Define and distinguish the macro and micro levels of
      sociological analysis.
4.    Examine the relationship between sociology and
      popular wisdom (common sense).
5.    Define, compare, and contrast the natural sciences and
      the social sciences.

                                                                    2
     Objectives
     Upon completion of this lesson the student will be able to …
6.  Identify and distinguish among the various social
    sciences.
7. Explain the difference between applied and pure social
    science.
8. Be able to list several of the occupational and personal
    uses of sociology.
9. Explain how the knowledge of sociology can be
    advantageous to every social being.
10. Use the sociological imagination to explain a social
    trend with regard to the impact of larger social forces
    upon individual behavior.                                       3
Key Terms
   analytical studies         political science
   anthropology               psychology and social
   applied social research       psychology
   clinical sociology           pure and applied
   descriptive studies           sciences
   economics                    social engineering
   evaluative studies           social sciences
   geography                    social work
   history                      sociological imagination
   macrosociology               sociological perspective
   microsociology               sociology

                                                             4
What Sociology Is NOT

 Opinion
 Journalism
 A TV Talk Show
 Common Sense



                        5
Sociology is not just
common sense!
COMMON SENSE        SOCIOLOGY
 Vague              Specific
 Over-simplified    Qualify it’s
 Contradictory       statements
                     Prove it’s assertions



                                              6
Sociology IS ...
 Sociology is the scientific study of
 human society and social interactions.
 Sociology…
     uses the scientific method,
     focuses on groups, and
     looks for patterns in society.


                                          7
Sociology IS ...
 Sociology is Sociology is the study of
 social relationships, social institutions,
 and society.
 Basically, the term sociology means
 “words about human associations or
 society.”
     Socius - “companion” or “associate”
     Logus - “word.”
                                              8
Sociology IS ...
Sociologists investigate many areas, such as racial
and ethnic relationships; prejudice and
discrimination; power and politics; jobs and income;
families and family life; school systems and the
educational process; social control; organizations;
bureaucracies; groups and group dynamics; leisure;
health-care systems; military systems; women’s
movements; and labor movements. It is an extremely
broad field.
                                                       9
Sociology IS ...
 Sociology is a perspective.

  The sociological perspective involves a
  conscious effort to question the obvious, to
  remove ourselves from familiar experiences, and
  to examine them critically and objectively.
  This type of empirical investigation enables
  sociologists to determine whether generalizations
  made about society are accurate.
                                                      10
Macro vs Micro
The sociological perspective operates at two
   levels:
 MACROSOCIOLOGY deals with large-scale
   structures and processes, such as broad
   social categories, institutions, and social
   systems.
 MICROSOCIOLOGY is concerned with
   small-scale units, such as individuals in
   small-group interaction.
                                                 11
The Sociological Perspective

The sociological perspective is also called
  the sociological imagination.
The sociological imagination is the ability
  to see our private experiences and
  personal difficulties as entwined with the
  structural arrangements of society.



                                               12
The Sociological Imagination
The sociological imagination is the quality of
  mind that helps us understand…
 the distinction between personal troubles and
  public issues.
 the relationship between individual experiences
  and larger social forces that shape our
  actions.
 the intersection between history and
  biography.

                                                    13
14
Sociology is …
Sociology is one of several disciplines in the
social sciences.
Anthropology            Psychology
Economics               History
Political Science       Geography
Psychology              Social Work


                                                 15
   Using the Sociological Imagination
           to Examine Society
The sociological imagination allows us to penetrate our
  social world and identify the links between our personal
  biographies and larger social forces – to see that what is
  happening to us immediately is a minute point at which
  our personal lives and society intersect.

   1. How does the structure of society guide a person’s
      choices?
   2. How does a person’s relative level of power and wealth in
      society impact their personal experience?
   3. How do social arrangements and social rules influence
      the behavior of individuals and groups?
                                                                  16
Benefits of Sociology

The sociological perspective…
1. Helps us assess the truth of “common
   sense.”
2. Helps us assess both opportunities
   and constraints in our lives.
3. Empowers us to be active participants
   in our society.
4. Helps us live in a diverse world.
                                           17
Conclusion
Sociology is the scientific study of society
 and human interaction. The
 sociological perspective involves the
 ability to see the consequences of both
 personal actions and larger social
 forces and to understand the
 relationships between them. The study
 of sociology has many benefits for the
 student.
                                               18

				
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posted:11/2/2011
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