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UND / Sociology / SOC 110 / What is sociology and what is the “sociological imagination”?

What is sociology and what is the “sociological imagination”?

What is sociology and what is the “sociological imagination”?


School: University of North Dakota
Department: Sociology
Course: Introduction to Sociology
Professor: Ashley leschyshyn
Term: Spring 2016
Cost: 50
Name: Sociology Exam 1 Study Guide
Description: These notes cover what will all be on the exam this Monday.
Uploaded: 09/30/2016
6 Pages 28 Views 1 Unlocks

anacletoaj15 (Rating: )

Soc 110: Intro to Sociology  

What is sociology and what is the “sociological imagination”?

Fall 2016, Dr. Liz Legerski

Exam 1 Study Guide

Be familiar with the following terms and topics: 

What is sociology and what is the “sociological imagination”?  

∙ Sociology- study of groups & group interactions, societies, and social interactions,  from small and personal groups to very large groups.

∙ Sociological imagination- an awareness of the relationship between a person’s  behavior and experience and the wider culture that shaped the person’s choices  and perceptions.

What is a paradigm? How does is shape research?

∙ Paradigm- philosophical and theoretical frameworks used within a discipline to  formulate theories, generalizations, and the experiments performed in support of  them

What is a paradigm? how does is shape research?

If you want to learn more check out How should these goods be distributed?
If you want to learn more check out What is universal instantiation?

o Structural functionalism, conflict theory, and symbolic interactionism  What do we mean when we talk about “macro-level” analysis and “micro-level” analysis? ∙ Macro level analysis- look at trends between large groups and societies ∙ Micro level- study small groups and individual interactions If you want to learn more check out Who killed her family for jason?

o Georg Simmel- analyzed dynamics of two people and three person groups Know the basic ideas of Marx, Durkheim, and Weber and their contributions to social  theory. For example, what did they have to say about things like Capitalism and  positivism? Who described society as an organism? Who was concerned about  alienation? Who was concerned about anomie? Who was interested in how societies  developed a collective conscience? 

What do we mean when we talk about “macro-level” analysis and “micro-level” analysis?

Don't forget about the age old question of What are the 5 mains types of phobias?

∙ Communism- an economic system under which there is no private or corporate  ownership

∙ Marx, class struggle was foundation of capitalism

∙ Capitalism  exploitation  communism

∙ Communism is a more equitable system than capitalism  ∙ Rejected positivism

∙ Believed that societies grew and changed as a result of the  struggles of different social classes over the means of production ∙ Argued that class was the most important thing in social life  ∙ Not successful, they saw that it didn’t work.

∙ Minorities (low class) fighting for minimum wage ..  

∙ Conflict between owners and the low class

∙ Commercial for Orange juice… the capitalists don’t show the minorities working and picking the oranges

∙ Weber

∙ Antipositivist, rationality & value-free science

∙ Protestantism & the origins of Capitalism (book)- religious ideas.. if  worked hard enough, God would choose you.

∙ Strive to understand things in a deep way, and the way people view  things. (do not make grand generalizations) If you want to learn more check out Which is the better sentence when writing for the mass media?

∙ Not just class, status.

∙ Defines sociology as striving to interpret the meaning of social action  and gives a casual explanation of the way in which action precedes and  the effects it produces

∙ Emile Durkheim

∙ Studied suicide (social aspect)

∙ Saw patterns, concluded social integration/ regulation was the  key

∙ Age- young and old people

∙ Marital status- single people were more likely to commit society ∙ More men than women  If you want to learn more check out Academic dishonesty is described as?

∙ Unemployment- more likely to commit suicide

∙ Religion- Catholics had lower rates of suicide then Protestant’s  ∙ Social origins of problems, types of solidarity (unity or agreement of  feeling or action, especially among individuals with a common interest;  mutual support within a group)

∙ People can rise to their proper levels in society based on merit ∙ Introduced sociology into academic

∙ Structural Functionalism

How do Symbolic Interactionism, Structural Functionalism, and Conflict Theory differ? For  example, which theory explains the struggle between the social classes? Which  explains society as made up of interrelated parts? Which theory explored concepts  like impression management? Which are considered macro-level and which are  considered more micro-level?

1. Symbolic Interactionism- interaction & self, identity construction a. Micro level

b. People actively construct it  

c. Use symbols, language, etc to create identity  

d. Codes of Gender video (watch if interested)

e. Critics: too narrow, difficult to be objective.

2. Structural Functionalism 

a. Society Order & deviance, latent (unintended consequences) &  manifest functions  

b. Macro Theory

c. Critics: can’t explain change, circular  

d. Develop in 1950s

e. Sees society as a social system of interconnected social institutions,  have separate functions to help society as a whole survive over time 3. Conflict Theories

a. Inequality, power, & completion over resources, conflict … allow  differences in power

b. Develop in 1960s  

c. Unequal distribution that leads to social disorder

d. Critics: ignores stability  

e. Macro Theory

Know the characteristics of the primary research methods. For example, be able to identify a quantitative research method, secondary data analysis, field research, participant  observation, and ethnographies.

∙ Field research- gathering primary data from a natural environment without doing  a lab experiment or a survey

o Interpretive framework

o The sociologists are the ones out of their element, rather than the subjects o Ex: coffee shop, tribal village, homeless shelter, etc.

o Purpose: observe specific behaviors. Does not answer why people behave  that way.  

∙ Secondary data analysis- already completed work from other researchers  o Saves time and money, but can also add depth to a study

o Advantages-  

∙ Nonreactive research- does not include direct contact with subjects o Disadvantages-  

∙ Not always easy to access public records  

∙ Quantitative Research Method- represent research collected in numerical form  that can be counted

∙ Participant Observation- when a research immerses herself in a group or social  setting in order to make observations from an insider perspective

∙ Ethnographies- observing a complete social setting and all that it entails o Benefits: Great detail, see how people behave (provides real voices and  meanings of things)

o Time consuming, hard to generalize due to small samples

What are independent and dependent variables? Be able to identify them. ∙ Dependent variables- a variable changed by other variables

∙ Independent variables- variables that cause changes in dependent variables ∙ EX: how is social class (dependent variable) affected by level of education  (independent variable)

What is the Hawthorne Effect? How might it influence the findings of a study? Hawthorne effect- when study subjects behave in a certain manner due to their  awareness of being observed by a researcher

What is a hypothesis? Be able to identify examples of hypotheses.

Hypothesis- a testable educated guess about predicted outcomes between two or more  variables

a. EX: how is social class (dependent variable) affected by level of education  (independent variable)

Why is sampling important for doing good survey research? What is a truly “random”  sample?

Random sample- a study’s participants being randomly selected to serve as a  representation of a larger population

What are the processes of conceptualization and operationalization? Why are they so  important? 


What does it mean to maintain value neutrality when doing research? Value neutrality- a practice of remaining impartial, without bias or judgment during the  course of a study and in publishing results  

Why is reliability important in research? What does it mean for research findings or  measures to have reliability?

∙ Reliability- a measure of a study’s consistency that considers how likely results are to be replicated if a study is reproduced

∙ Reliability- close to uniform when tested on more than one person

Be able to identify examples of ethnocentrism, cultural imperialism, cultural relativism,  and culture shock.  

∙ Ethnocentrism- evaluating and judging another culture based on how it compares to one's own cultural norms

o Belief or attitude that one's own culture is better than all others  ∙ Cultural universalism- patterns or traits that are globally common to all societies  o Ex: family unit, customs like funeral rites, weddings, and celebrations of birth ∙ Cultural relativisms- the practice of assessing a culture by its own standards  rather than viewing it through the lens of one’s own culture.

o Requires an open mind and a willingness to consider, and even adapt to new  values and norms

∙ Cultural Shock- an experience of personal disorientation when confronted with an  unfamiliar way of life  

o EX: Traveler from Chicago might find the nightly silence of rural Montana not  peaceful.  

What are norms? What’s the difference between a formal and informal norm? What’s the  difference between folkways and mores?

∙ Norms- define how to behave in accordance with what a society has defined as  good, right, and important, and most members of society adhere to them.  ∙ Formal Norms- established written rules

∙ Informal Norms- casual behaviors that are generally and widely conformed to  ∙ Folkways- norms without any moral underpinnings

∙ Direct appropriate behavior in the day to day practices and expressions of a  culture

∙ Mores- norms that embody the moral views and principles of a group ∙ Do not want to violate because they have serious consequences  

∙ Ex: murder.

What is culture? What are values? How do norms and values shape culture? What are  cultural universals?  

∙ Culture- shared beliefs, values, and practices

∙ Values- culture's standard for discerning what is good and just in a society o Help shape a society by suggesting what is good and bad

o Suggest how people should behave

o Portray an ideal culture  

o When people observe norms of society, they receive approval.

∙ Norms- define how to behave in accordance with what a society has defined as  good, right, and important, and most members of society adhere to them.  ∙ Cultural universalism- patterns or traits that are globally common to all societies  o Ex: family unit, customs like funeral rites, weddings, and celebrations of birth

What is the difference between high culture and popular culture? How do pop culture and  high culture influence each other and change?  

∙ High Culture- describes the pattern of cultural experiences and attitudes that exist in the highest class segments of a society  

o Intellectualism, political power, and prestige

o Associated with wealth.  

∙ Pop Culture- pattern of cultural experiences and attitudes that exist in mainstream society.  

o Parade, a baseball game, or the season finale of a television show.  

Know some examples of subcultures.

∙ Subculture- a similar cultural group within a large culture

o Part of the large culture but also share a specific identity within a smaller  group

o Ethnic and racial groups share the language, food and customs of their  heritage

How do things like cultural diffusion and culture lag work?

∙ Cultural lag- time that elapses between the introduction of a new item of material  culture and its acceptance as part of nonmaterial culture

o Cause tangible problems  

∙ Cultural diffusion- the spread of material and nonmaterial culture. What was important about the Agricultural Revolution and the development of agricultural  societies?

-many societies based their economies around mechanized labor, leading to greater  profits and a trend toward greater social mobility.  

What was important about Industrialization?  

∙ Industrial societies- societies characterized by a reliance on mechanized labor to  create material goods

∙ This postindustrial, or information, society is built on digital technology and  nonmaterial goods.

What is the difference between status and roles? How does status shape one’s roles?  ∙ Status- the responsibilities and benefits that a person experiences according to his  or her rank and role in society.

∙ Roles- patterns of a behavior that are representative of a person’s social status What is a role performance? What is role strain?

∙ Role performance- how a person expresses his or her role

∙ Role strain- stress that occurs when too much is requires of a single role  What is the difference between ascribed and achieved status? How do they affect each  other?

∙ Ascribed- the status outside of an individual’s control, such as sex or race ∙ Achieved- the status a person chooses, such as a level of education or income What is Charles Cooley’s concept of the looking-glass self?

∙ self-understanding is constructed by their perception of how others view them. What is socialization? What is resocialization?  

∙ Socialization- the process wherein people come to understand societal norms and  expectations, to accept society’s beliefs, and to be aware of societal values ∙ Resocialization- the process by which old behaviors are removed and new  behaviors are learned in their place

What are the primary agents of socialization? How do agents like the education system or  peer groups operate to shape socialization?

∙ Families- first agent of socialization

o Teach child what he or she needs to know  

∙ Peer Groups- made up of people who are similar in age and social status and who  share interests.

o Provide adolescents first major socialization experience outside the realm of  their families.  

How do statuses such class and gender shape a person’s socialization? For example, when does gender socialization begin? How do the parenting practices of middle-class and working-class families differ?

∙ School- makes kid function into practicing behaviors such as teamwork, following a  schedule, and using textbooks.  

o Teach kids about citizenship and national pride.. Saying the Pledge of  allegiance.  

∙ Workplace- adults must become socialized to, and socialized by a variety of work  environments

∙ Government- age norms established by the government.  

o Adult= 18 years old

o 65 years old- People become eligible for senior benefits

Be familiar with Kohlberg’s theory of moral development.

∙ Moral development- way people learn what society considered to be good and  bad.  

o Prevents people from acting on unchecked urges.  

Three Levels:

1. Preconvention

a. Young children who lack a higher level of cognitive ability, experience the  world around them only through their senses.  

2. Conventional

a. Teen years, take feelings into consideration

3. Post conventional -

a. People begin to think of morality in abstract terms.  

Know about Mead’s stages of socialization. What is the generalized other? What is the “nature vs. nurture” debate?  

∙ Nurture- the relationships and caring that surround us

∙ Nature- temperaments, interests, and talents are set before birth  

What did they find in the contemporary Milgram experiment conducted by Primetime  News, film 1?

∙ People will have a tendency to do things that people tell them to do. Even when  they know it may be wrong.

What are some of the cultural messages advertisers send about women and girls as  described in film 1, Killing Us Softly?

∙ Women are supposed to look and be portrayed as an image rather than a person.

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