SOCIOLOGY * What is it? - Decatur Public Schools

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SOCIOLOGY – WHAT IS IT?
BELL WORK/NOTES – EXAMINING SOCIAL LIFE – 1/21/14
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According to Allan Johnson, what does
sociological practice offer?
What does Johnson say we must do
before we can eliminate the unnecessary
suffering in the world?
This is your
header! You
should write it at
the top of the
page
WHAT DID YOU THINK?
THAT’S WHY:
Psychology
Anthropology
History
Sociology
Economics
Political
Science
NOTES – EXAMINING SOCIAL LIFE – 1/30/14
CAN YOU DEFINE….

Psychology?
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History?
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The study of productions, distribution & consumption of
goods and services
Anthropology?
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The study of past events in human societies
Economics?

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The study of behavior and mental processes
The comparative study of past and present culture
Sociology?

The study of human social behavior from a group
perspective
NOTES – EXAMINING SOCIAL LIFE – 1/30/14
HOW DO YOU THINK SOCIOLOGICALLY?

You have to ask the right questions, sociologists
are concerned with a variety of things, some
examples?
Race
 gender,
 Socioeconomic status (how much $$$ someone makes)
 Age
 Occupation
 Political Preference
 Etc…

WEEKEND ACTIVITY – DOING SOCIOLOGY –
Over the weekend, your task is to practice
some sociology.
 You are to go to a public place and simply
observe & take notes for at least an hour
 Take notes on the people you see
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Are they alone or with other people?
Describe their behavior/how they are
communicating with others
Take note on sources of mass media, clothing,
music etc..
BE SURE TO RECORD THE TIME OF
EACH OBSERVATION
WEEKEND ACTIVITY – DOING SOCIOLOGY –
SET UP YOUR NOTEBOOK
Location:______________
 Time Observations
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Summary of observations – 1 paragraph
THINGS TO TAKE NOTE OF WHILE
OBSERVING
Different groups of or individual people
 Clothing, the way people carry themselves in
public
 Sources of mass media, music
 Race, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status,
age, occupation
 Activities people are engaged in
 Topics of conversation

QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF FOLLOWING
YOUR OBSERVATIONS
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(1) What is the structure of this particular society as a whole? What are its
essential components, and how are they related to one another? How does
it differ from other varieties of social order? Within it, what is the meaning
of any particular feature for its continuance and for its change?
(2) Where does this society stand in human history? What are the
mechanics by which it is changing? What is its place within and its
meaning for the development of humanity as a whole? How does any
particular feature we are examining affect, and how is it affected by, the
historical period in which it moves? And this period - what are its essential
features? How does it differ from other periods? What are its characteristic
ways of history-making?
(3) What varieties of men and women now prevail in this society and in
this period? And what varieties are coming to prevail? In what ways are
they selected and formed, liberated and repressed, made sensitive and
blunted? What kinds of `human nature' are revealed in the conduct and
character we observe in this society in this period? And what is the
meaning for 'human nature' of each and every feature of the society we are
examining?
Once you’ve reflected on your observations, write at least a paragraph and
be prepared to share it with the class on Monday.
NOTES – THE DEVELOPMENT OF SOCIOLOGY – 1/31/14

Sociology as an academic discipline began in the 1800s
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What was going on in the 1800s that could have led to the
development of sociology?
Why sociology is a subject:
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1. The industrial revolution
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2. American & French Revolutions
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Rapid growth of urban populations leads to many social
problems
People could no longer question the effect of society on the
individual
3. The Enlightenment/Renaissance
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Rejection of religious explanations & adoption of the scientific
method
EARLY EUROPEAN SOCIOLOGISTS
 Auguste
Comte 1798-1857)
Sort of looks like Hannibal
Lecter
 Considered the father of
sociology
 Lived through the French
Revolution
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Focused on two areas
 Social order & Social change
Also coined the term
“Sociology”
 British
HARRIET MARTINEAU
1802-1876
author
 Wrote Society in America in
1837
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Looked at marriage. The
family, race relations,
education and religion
Basically established the focus
of sociological study
Argued that scholars should
advocate change for the
problems they studied
Spoke in favor of women’s
rights, religious tolerance &
abolition of slavery
HERBERT SPENCER
1820-1903
Thought of society as an
organism w/ a set of
interdependent parts that
worked to maintain the system
over time
 STRONGLY influenced by
Charles Darwin
 Came up with Social Darwinism
– coined the term “survival of
the fittest”
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KARL MARX 1818-1883
Father of Socialism
 Divided society into two
parts
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The bourgeoisie (boozh-wahZEE)
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They own the means of
production
& the Proletariat or workers
Believed that the majority
of social issues were an
outcome of the conflict
between these two groups
EMILE DURKHEIM 1858-1917
 Like
Comte, Durkheim was
concerned with social order
 Like Spencer, he saw society
as a set of interdependent
parts that served different
functions
 Particularly interested in
religion – he believed that
shared beliefs were the glue
that held society together
 Wrote one of the 1st true
sociological studies – Suicide
 Interested
MAX WEBER
1864-1920
in separate
groups within society
rather than society as a
whole
 Thought that sociologists
should go beyond
observable facts and work
to uncover peoples feelings
and thoughts by using the
principle of VERSTEHEN
(fer-SHTAY-en)
 Verstehen involves an
attempt to understand the
meanings individuals
attach to their actions
BELL WORK & NOTES MODERN PERSPECTIVES – 2/3/14


What is VERSTEHEN & how does it apply to
what you guys did over the weekend?
Once you’ve answered the question, go over your
observations & be prepared to share what you
saw with the class
Take 5 minutes to answer these questions in your notebook
 1. What do you see in this picture?
 2. How does this picture tell you about the society that
these individuals are a part of?
 3. What types of questions do you think sociologists would
ask upon seeing a picture like this?

What sociologists see:
An orderly world where all involved are fulfilling a role. The young people
are preforming their role- that of a student & the school is performing its
task of preparing students to be productive citizens in society
 Others would see a setting where there is competition for resources, they
would be curious about the power relationships involved in this picture
and how those relationships affected the distribution of resources
 Still others would see a setting made up of small groups. They would have
to know how relationships among these groups affect what foes on in
school
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NOTES MODERN PERSPECTIVES – 2/3/14

Major Theoretical Perspectives
Sociologists develop theories or explanations of
relationships among particular phenomena to better
understand the world
 There are 3 major Theoretical Perspectives, or
schools of thought in sociology
 Each one is a lens that presents a slightly different
image of society or focuses on different aspects
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FUNCTIONALIST
PERSPECTIVE
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Society is a set of interrelated parts that
work together to produce a social system.
Primarily focuses on the functions of things
like, family, religion, education and economy
To functionalists society is best compared to
the human body – a variety of systems work
together to ensure the bodies survival
FUNCTIONALIST PERSPECTIVE

Realizing that not everything
element of society is functional
functionalists are also
concerned with
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Dysfunction or the negative
consequence an element has for
the stability of society
Functions can be either positive
or negative, they can also either
be a
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Manifest function – the
intended and recognized
consequence of some element in
society
Or
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Latent function – unintended or
unrecognized consequence of an
element of society
BELL WORK & CONTINUED PERSPECTIVE
NOTES – 2/4/14
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Identify something in your life (other than school
or a car) that you interact with on a daily basis
and describe its manifest & latent functions
Identify and describe the two groups the conflict
perspective primarily concerned with
CONFLICT PERSPECTIVE
Focuses on the forces in society that
promote competition and change
 Particularly interested in the family,
racial groups, gender & the
relationship between the workers and
employers
 The basis of social conflict is the
competition over scarce resources
 When a group obtains those resources
they generally protect them through
laws, social programs or violence
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Examples?
HOW WOULD A CONFLICT THEORIST BREAK DOWN THIS
STORY?
SYMBOLIC INTERACTIONIST
PERSPECTIVE
Focus on small groups and how
individuals interact with one
another in society
 Interested in the ways individuals
respond to one another in
everyday situations
 Interested also in the symbols (a
symbol is anything that
represents anything else) that
play a part in our daily lives
 3 basic parts of symbolic
interactionism

Meaning
 Language
 Thought
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LEVELS OF ANALYSIS
Microsociology- small group settings and the
everyday face to face interactions
 Macrosociology – study of large scale systems or
society as a whole
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Globalization – the development of economic
political sand social relationships that stretch
world wide
PERSPECTIVES PRACTICE

Use your notes, your neighbor and a book if
necessary, to complete the sociological
perspectives worksheet.
NOTE BOOK CHECKS
THE FOLLOWING SHOULD BE IN YOUR
NOTEBOOK FOR TOMORROW
Bell Work/Notes – Examining Social Life –
1/30/14
 Weekend Activity – DOING Sociology –
 Notes – The development of Sociology – 1/31/14
 Bell Work & Notes MODERN PERSPECTIVES –
2/3/14
 Bell Work & continued Perspective notes – 2/4/14
 Homework – Research Methods

SOCIOLOGICAL
EXPERIMENTS
Objectives:
I can describe the process of Sociological research and
the scientific method
I can Apply the different types of Sociological research
BELL WORK
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Write down the steps of the scientific method!!
Ask a
Question
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Backgroun
d Research
Hypothesi
s
Test
Hypothesis
Analyze
Data
Draw
Conclusion
Can you think of a time when you have used the scientific
method in your life? Discuss with a partner on a possible
scenario where you have and report back to the class
- Debating what movie to see or where to eat
- Figuring out how to act on dates
“If I open the door for her and listen to her
stories, then the I will get another date”
- If your TV gets fuzzy or Xbox won’t work, you
experiment with
different knobs and buttons until it
does!
SINCE THE FIRST STEP TO RESEARCH IS TO ASK A
QUESTION….
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Brainstorm 4 questions you have about human
behavior/ social interaction!
For Example: Mr. K wonders why the same students seem to be
consistently late to class
NATURALISTIC OBSERVATION
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A study method that involves covertly or overtly
watching subjects' behaviors in their natural
environment, without intervention
CASE STUDIES
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Research method that
involves an intensive
investigation of one or
more participants
SURVEYS
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Research method in which information is
obtained by asking many individuals a fixed set
of questions
LONGITUDINAL STUDIES
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Method of
research where
data is collected
about a group of
participants over a
number of years to
asses how
characteristics
change or remain
the same during
development
CROSS-SECTIONAL STUDY

Method of research in which data is collected
from groups of participants of different ages and
compared so that conclusions can be drawn about
differences due to age
STATISTICAL ANALYSIS/ CORRELATIONAL STUDIES
How does time spent studying psychology
correlate to a students’ final grade?
Final Grade in Sociology
Final Grade in Sociology

The measure of a relationship between two
variables or sets of data
Final Grade in Sociology
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Time Spent Studying
Days Absent
Time Spent Brushing
Teeth
Correlation
DOES NOT
prove
Causation!!!
!
EXPERIMENTS
Allow the researcher to control the situation and
reduce the influence of outside influence
 Hypothesis-educated guess about the
relationship of 2 variables
 Variable- any factor capable of change
 Experimental group-the group to which an
independent variable is applied
 Control group- the group that is treated the same
way as the experimental group except that the
independent variable is not applied
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ACTIVITY
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With the person next to you try to match your 8
questions (4 each) about human behavior to the
method of study that would be most effective.
Once you’ve matched them, talk to Mr. K and
come to write your questions on the different
pieces of paper around the room
WHICH PERSPECTIVE DOES THE FOLLOWING
DESCRIPTION, TOPICS, INDIVIDUALS OR TERMS
APPLY TO?
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Weber
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When a group attains power over another group, they
will make laws and ruels to protect their position of
power
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Functionalism
Dating/marriage tradition, development of children,
group relationships
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Conflict
Family, automobiles, education, crime
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Interactionism
Interactionism
Interested in those who have power and those who do
not
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conflict
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This theorist was interested in groups and individuals
within society and how they interacted with one another
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This theorist was interested in how different parts of
society work together to create agreement
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Marx
He was also interested in the jobs different groups
performed and if the groups were functioning correctly
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Durkheim
This theorist believed society was created by competition
for power and control of resources
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Weber
Durkhiem
This theorist studied why thins in society stay the same
and or change
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Comte
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Marx stated that these people own nothing and
work for those who own businesses
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the main or intended function of something
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Proletariat
Manifest function
The unintended function of something
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Latent function
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How was Frankie's incident used by the Cuban
American group as a way to gain attention
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How did the different people in the government work
together to make the decision to send Frankie back to
Cuba
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Functionalism
How did the newspapers, television etc. use frankies
story to make more profit and communicate their
political views
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Interactionism
Interactionism
How does a family with divorced parents like
Frankie’s family influence society
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functionalism
BELL WORK – 2/12/14 – LUNCH TABLE
ANALYSIS
Take out your completed notes from when you
observed and analyzed your lunch table.
 Write a paragraph summary of what you
observed
 I’m going to be walking around to check in your
chapter 1 review, once you finish your paragraph
discuss with a neighbor what you noticed at your
lunch table
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