Sociology 004 Readings Study Guide Quiz 1
Sociology 004 Readings Study Guide Quiz 1 SOC 004
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This 10 page Study Guide was uploaded by Neelam Aziz on Wednesday May 4, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to SOC 004 at University of California Riverside taught by Schmitt C in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 49 views. For similar materials see METHODS OF SOCIOLOGICL INQUIRY in Sociology at University of California Riverside.
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Sociology 004 Quiz 1 Readings Study Guide Chapter 1 1.1 How Do We Know What We Know? Many of us know things simply because we have experienced them directly Direct experience may or may not get us accurate information The problem with informal observation is that sometime it is right and sometimes it is wrong Selective Observation: noticing only the pattern that is found the first time Authority: (mother, government, teacher…) Research Methods: a systematic process of inquiry for gaining knowledge Ways Of Knowing o Informal Observation: occurs when we make observations without any systematic process for observing or assessing accuracy of what we observed o Selective Observation: Occurs when we see only those patterns that we want to see or when we assume that only the pattern we have experienced directly exist o Overgeneralization: Occurs when we assume that broad patterns exist even when out observations have been limited o Authority: A socially defined source of knowledge that might shape our beliefs about what is true and what is not true o Research Method: An organized, logical way of learning and knowing about our social world. Much more reliable source of knowledge than most other ways of knowing Ontology may shape the sort of research questions he or she asks and how those questions are posed. Refers to one’s analytical philosophy of the nature of reality. Epistemology has to do with knowledge. Deals with how we know what is. How do we know the things we know? 1.2 Science, Social Science, and Sociology Conducting science is a deliberate process Scientists gather information about facts in a way that is organized and intentional and usually follows a set of predetermined steps. Sociology uses organized and intentional procedures to uncover facts of truths about society Sociologists study how individuals shape, are shaped by, and create ad maintain their social groups Main Point!!!! Sociologists study human beings in relation to one another Applied Research: refers to sociology that is conducted for some purpose beyond or in addition to a researcher’s interest in a topic Public Sociology: refers the application of sociological theories and research to matters of public interest Qualitative Methods: ways of collecting data using words or pictures Quantitative Methods: ways of collecting data using numbers While qualitative methods aim to gain and indepth understanding of a relatively small number of cases, quantitative methods offer less depth but more breadth because they typically focus on a much larger number of cases Social science is concerned with patterns in society While individuals make up patterns, every individual does not need to be a part of a pattern in order for it to exist 1.3 Why Should We Care Understanding social scientific research methods can help s become more accurate and more responsible consumers of information Knowledge about social scientific methods is useful for a verity of jobs or careers 1.4 Design and Goals Of This Text ……. Chapter 2 2.1 Micro, Meso, and Macro Approaches Micro Level: Scientists examine the smallest level of interaction. Might include oneonone interactions between couples or friends Meso Level: Sociologists investigate groups. Tend to study the experience of groups and the interactions between groups Macro Level: Sociologists examine social structures and institutions. Examines largescale patterns. Study interactions at the broadest level such as interactions between nations or comparisons across nations. Some topics lend themselves to one particular analytical level while others coul be studied from any, or all, of the three levels of analysis 2.2 Paradigms, Theories, and How They Shape a Researcher’s Approach Paradigms: An analytical lens, a way of viewing the world and a framework from which to understand the human experience. Way of framing what we know, what we can know, and how we can know it Positivism: emphasis on objectivity, knowability, and deductive logic. Assumption is society can and should be studied empirically and scientifically Social Constructionism: emphasis on truth as varying, socially constructed, and everchanging. Assumption is reality is created collectively and that social context and interaction frame our realities Critical Paradigm: emphasis on power, inequality, and social change. Assumption is social science can never be truly valuefree and should be conducted with the express goal of social change in mind Postmodernism: emphasis on inherent problems with pervious paradigms. Assumption is truth in any form may or may not be knowledge Structural Functionalnism: focuses on interrelations between parts of society; how parts work together. Might examine positive, negative, intended and unintended consequences of professional sports leagues. Conflict Theory: Who wins and who loses based on the way that society is organized. Might examine issues of power in sport such as differences in access to and participation in sport Symbolic Interactionism: Focuses on how meaning is created and negotiated through interactions. Might examine how the rules of sport of are constructed, taught, and learned Paradigms shape our everyday view of the world Sociologists use theory to help frame their research questions and to help them make sense of the answers to those questions Some sociological theories are rather sweeping in their coverage and attempt to explain, broadly, how and why societies are organized in particular ways Other sociological theories aim to explain more specific events or interactions 2.3 Inductive or Deductive? Two Different Approaches Inductive Approach: beginning with a set of empirical observations, seeking patterns in those observations, and then theorizing about those patterns SIMPLE TERMS: they move from data to theory, or from the specific to the general. Deductive Approach start with a social theory that they find compelling and then form a hypothesis from that theory, and then collecting and analyzing data to test those hypotheses. They move from a more general level to a more specific one While inductive and deductive approaches to research seem different they can be complementary. Researchers may not always set out to employ both approaches in their work but sometimes find that their use of one approach leads them to the other 2.4 Revisiting an Earlier Question The theory being invoked and the paradigm from which a researcher frames his or her work, can shape not only the questions asked but also the answers discovered Different levels of analysis lead to different point of focus on any given topic Whether a researcher takes an inductive or deductive approach will determine the process by which he or she attempts to answer his or her research question Chapter 3 3.1 Research on Humans US Department of Health and Human Services defines a human as: “a living individual about whom an investigator conducting research obtains (1) data through intervention or interaction with the individual, or (2) identifiable private information” Nonhuman research subjects are objects or entities that investigations manipulate or analyze in the process of conducting research IRB = Institutional Review Boards IRB’s ensure that the rights and welfare of human research subjects will be protected at all institutions that receive federal support for research Research on human subjects has not always been regulated to the extent that it is today All institutions receiving federal support for research must have an IRB. Organizations that do not receive federal support but where research is conducted also often includes IRBs as part of their organizational structure 3.2 Specific Ethical Issues to Consider We cannot force anyone to participate in research without that person’s knowledge or consent Informed Consent: a subject’s voluntary agreement to participate in research based on a full understanding of the research and of the possible risks and benefits involved 1 requirement subjects may neither waive nor even appear to waive any of their legal rights. Subjects also cannot release a researcher, his or her sponsor, or institution from any legal liability should something go wrong during the course of their participation in the research Most IRB’s require researchers to share some details about the purpose of the research, possible benefits of participation, and, most importantly, possible risks associated with participating in that research with their subjects Researcher must obtain the informed consent of the people who participate in their research If researchers promise anonymity, he or she cannot link the individual participants with their data If a researcher promises confidentiality, he or she promises not to reveal the identities of research participants, even though the researcher can link individual participants with their data The ASA has developed a Code of Ethics to which American sociologists are expected to adhere. The 5 general principles are: o Professional Competence: states that research should recognize their own limitations and only conduct research for which they have been properly trained. Also states that researchers should engage in ongoing education for themselves in order to remain competent. o Integrity: Directs that sociologists be “honest, fair, and respectful” in all their professional activities including, their research activity o Profession and Scientific Responsibility: Guides sociologists to be respectful in their relationships with one another at the same time that it warns against collegiality if it impedes one’s ability to behave ethically o Respect for People’s Rights, Dignity, and Diversity: Addresses the need to reduce bias in all professional activities o Social Responsibility: States that sociologists should “strive to advance the science of sociology and serve the public good” 3.3 Ethics at Micro, Meso, and Macro Levels Micro: researchers must consider their own conduct and the rights of individual research. o Focus: Individual o Does my research impinge on the individual’s rights to privacy? o Could my research offend subjects in any way? o Could my research cause emotional distress to any of my subjects? Meso: researchers should think about the expectations of their give profession (in this case sociology) o Focus: Group o Does my research follow the ethical guidelines of my profession and discipline? o Have I met my duty to those who funded my research? Macro: researchers should consider her or his duty to, and the expectations of, society. o Focus: Society o Does my research meet the societal expectations of social research? 3.4 The Practice of Science Vs. the Uses of Science Conducting research ethically requires that researchers be ethical not only in their data collection procedures but also in reporting their methods and findings The ethical use of research requires an effort to understand, an awareness of one’s own limitations in terms of knowledge and understanding, and the honest application of research findings What qualifies as ethical research is determined collectively by a number of individuals, organizations, and institutions and may change over time As researchers, it is our ethical responsibility to fully disclose our research procedures As consumers of research, it is our ethical responsibility to pay attention to such details By sharing research helps ensure he or she has conducted legitimate research Chapter 4 4.1 Starting Where You Already Are Find a topic of interest o How do you feel about where you already are? o What do you know about where you already are? How do you feel about your topic? o Do you believe your perspective is the only valid one? o Do you believe it is the wisest one? o The most practical one? o How do you feel about other perspectives on this topic? o If you feel so strongly to the point where certain finding would upset you or you would set up your research to get the answer you want then you need to pick a different topic Many researchers choose topics by considering their own personal experiences, knowledge, and interests Researchers should be aware of and forthcoming about any strong feelings they might have about their research topics There are benefits and drawbacks associated with studying a topic about which you already have some prior knowledge or experience Researchers should be aware of and consider both 4.2 Is It Empirical? Empirical Questions: those that can be answered by real experience in the real world Ethical Questions: questions about which people have moral opinions and that may not be answerable in reference to the real world Our job is to gather social facts about those phenomena, not to judge or determine morality There are usually a number of ethical questions that could be asked about any single topic While sociologists may study topics which people have moral opinions, their job is to gather empirical data about the social world 4.3 Is It Sociological? Sociology is the scientific study of humans in groups st 1 sociologists recognize that who a person is and what he or she thinks and does is affected by the groups of which that person is a member Sociologists pay attention to how people’s experiences may differ depending on aspects of their identities Sociologists study what such identities and characteristics mean, how and by whom they given meaning, how they work together with other meanings, and what the consequences and their place in society Sociologists also accept that social interaction is patterns We are trained to look for consistencies in social patterns across time and space Sociology is unique in its focus of social context, patterns, and social change Though similar to several other disciplines, there are distinct features that separate sociology from each discipline with which it shares some similarities 4.4 Is It a Question? A good research question has the following 1. Written as a question 2. Clearly focused 3. Is not a yes/no question 4. Has more than one plausible answer 5. Considers relationships among multiple people Most strong sociological research questions have 5 key features A poorly focused question can lead to the demise of an otherwise wellexecuted study 4.5 Steps When thinking about feasibility of their research questions, researchers should consider their own identities and characteristics along with any potential constraints related to time and money Becoming familiar with your library and the resources it has to offer is an excellent way to prepare yourself for successfully conducting research Perusing the abstracts of published scholarly work in your area of interest is an excellent way to familiarize yourself with the sorts of questions sociologists have asked about your topic Chapter 13 13.1 Deciding What to Share and With Whom to Share It Sociology refers to the application of sociological theories and research to matters of public interest It is crucial that we share all aspects of our research: the good, the bad, and the ugly When preparing to share your work with others, and in order to meet your ethical obligations, you should ask yourself the following: 1. Why did I conduct this research? (Understanding why you conducted your research will help you be honest with, yourself and your readers, about your personal interests, investments, or biases with respect to the work.) 2. How did I conduct this research? (Being able to clearly communicate how you conducted you research is also important. This means being honest about your data collection method, sample and sampling strategy, and analytical strategy) 3. For whom did I conduct this research? (Designed to help you articulate who the major stakeholders are in your research.) 4. When conclusions can I reasonably draw from this research? (Help you think about the major strengths of your work.) 5. Knowing what I know now, what would I do differently? (Designed to make you think about potential weaknesses in your work and how future research might build rom or improve upon your work.) 6. How could this research be improved? (Designed to make you think about potential weaknesses in your work and how future research might build rom or improve upon your work.) Understanding who your audience is will help you frame your research in a way that is most meaningful to that audience As they prepare to share their research, researchers must keep in mind their ethical obligations to their peers, their research participants, and the public Audience peculiarities will shape how much and in what ways details about one’s research are reported 13.2 Presenting Your Research Formal Talks o 1520 min o must discuss the studies that have come before yours o use what precious time you have to highlight your work o include your research question, methodological approach, major findings, and a few final takeaways Roundtable Presentations o Aim to help stimulate a conversation about a topic o Useful when your research is in the earlier stages of development o Good place to get some suggestions and also get a preview of the objections reviewers may raise with respect to your conclusions or your approach to the work o Good place to network and meet other scholars who share a common interest with you o Emphasizes discussion among participants Poster Presentation o Visually represent work o Tell a story with graphs, charts, tables, and other images o Helpful in earlier stages of a research project because they are designed to encourage the audience to engage you in conversation about your research o Point is to share highlights and then converse with your audience to get their feedback, hear their questions, and provide additional details about your research 13.3 Writing Up Research Results Most scholarly reports of research include o An abstract o An introduction o A literature review o A discussion of research methodology o A presentation of findings o Some concluding remarks o Discussion about implications of the work Plagiarism: presenting someone else’s work as your own 13.4 Disseminating Findings Dissemination refers to “a planned process that involves consideration of target audiences and the settings in which research findings are to be received and, where appropriate, communicating and interacting with wider policy and… service audience in ways that will facilitate research uptake in decisionmaking process and practice” People involved in your research will more than likely be interested to see your findings Disseminating your findings to the public more generally could take any number of forms: a letter to the editor of the local newspaper, a blog, or even a post or two on Facebook wall Disseminating findings involves 3 steps: 1. Determine who your audience is 2. Identify where your audience is 3. Discover how best to reach them Disseminating findings takes planning and careful consideration of one’s audience The disseminating process includes determining the who, where, and how of reaching one’s audience
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