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Soc 101: Week 1- Reading and Lecture Notes

by: Mikayla Schultz

Soc 101: Week 1- Reading and Lecture Notes SOC 101

Marketplace > University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire > Sociology > SOC 101 > Soc 101 Week 1 Reading and Lecture Notes
Mikayla Schultz
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The reading notes are on Chapters 1 and 2 and cover each individual section's key terms and points. This document also contains the first day of lecture notes, covering Theory and Metatheory.
Intro to Sociology
Jeff Erger
Class Notes
Introduction to Sociology




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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Mikayla Schultz on Monday September 19, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SOC 101 at University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire taught by Jeff Erger in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 14 views. For similar materials see Intro to Sociology in Sociology at University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire.


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Date Created: 09/19/16
Week 1: Reading Notes  Chapter 1:   ​ 1.1 Explain how the sociological perspective differs from common sense.  Sociology:  ​ is the systematic study of human society  Sociological perspective:​ seeing the general patterns of society in the lives of particular people    They differ because common sense says that we do things because that’s what we want to do,  however sociological perspective states that we do things instead because we are influenced by  the society surrounding us.     ​ 1.2  State several reasons that a global perspective is important in today’s world.   Global perspective:​ the study of the larger world and society’s place in it  1. Logical extension of the sociological perspective; the position of our society in the larger  world system affects everyone in the US  2. High­income, middle­income, low­income  a. Where we live shapes the lives we lead   b. Societies throughout the world are increasingly interconnected (through  technology.) Rich countries have cultural impacts on poorer countries  c. What happens in the rest of the world affects life in the US; growing economies  around the world has negatively impacted ours   d. Many social problems that we face in the US are far more serious elsewhere  (poverty, gender inequality)   e. Thinking globally helps us learn more about ourselves    ​ 1.3  Identify the advantages of sociological thinking for developing public policy, for encouraging  personal growth, and for advancing in a career.    Public Policy:  Sociologists have helped create laws and regulations that guide how people in communities live  and work. ​Ex: Noticed women who get divorced experience dramatic loss of income, so the  states passed a law that increases women’s claims to marital property.    Personal Growth:  Likely to become more active and aware.  1. Helps assess the truth of common sense. ​Ex: If we think we decide our own fate, we  might be quick to praise the successful and look down upon the unsuccessful, even  though it’s not even their fault.   2. Helps to see the opportunities and constraints in our lives; helps pursue goals more  effectively.  3. Helps us live in a diverse world; encourages us to think critically about the relative  strengths and weaknesses of all ways of life, including our own.    Advancing in Career:  Success depends on understanding how various categories of people differ in beliefs, family  patterns, and other ways of life because almost every job involves working with other people.     ​ 1.4 Link the origins of sociology to historical social changes.  1. New industrial economy­ the change in system of production took people out of their  homes weakening the traditions that had guided community life for centuries.  2. Growth of cities­ urban migrants faced pollution, crime, homelessness, and moving  through the streets crowded by strangers which was a huge change from living on farms  3. Political change­ shift in focus from a moral obligation to God and King to the pursuit of  self interest (due to growth of cities.)  4. A new awareness of society­ huge factories, exploding cities, and new sprint of  individualism combined to make people more aware of their surroundings    ❖ Auguste Comte coined the term sociology in 1838  ❖ Comte’s Three Stages of Society: Theological Stage­ church, Metaphysical­  Enlightenment and ideas of Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau, and Scientific Stage­  modern physics, chemistry, and sociology  ❖ Positivism: Comte’s approach to knowledge based on positive facts as opposed to mere  speculation    ​ 1.5 Summarize sociology’s major theoretical approaches.  Theoretical approach:​ a basic image of society that guides thinking and research  1. Structural Functional Approach:  ​ a framework for building theory that sees society as a  complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and stability  a. Social structure: stable pattern of social behavior; gives our lives shape in  families, workplace, classroom, and the community  b. Social functions: consequences of pattern for the operation of society as a whole  i. Manifest functions­ recognized/intended  ii. Latent functions­ unrecognized/unintended  c. Social dysfunction­ pattern that disrupts the operation of society (the downfall)  2. Social Conflict Approach: a ​  framework for building theory that sees society as an area  of inequality that generates conflict and change  a. Gender conflict­ focuses on inequality and conflict between men and women  b. Race conflict­ focuses on inequality and conflict between people of different race  3. Symbolic Interaction Approach: f ​ ramework for building theory that sees society as the  product of the everyday interactions of individuals (micro­orientation)  The difference between structural­functional and social conflict is that a conflict analysis rejects  the idea that social structure promotes the operation of society as a whole, focusing instead on  how social patterns benefit some people while hurting others.     They are similar because they are both ​macro­level orientation:  structures that shape society as a whole, orientation:​ a close­up focus on social interaction in specific situations.    ​ 1.6 Apply sociology’s major theoretical approaches to the topic of sports.  Structural Functional:  1. Manifest functions: physical shape, let off steam  2. Latent functions: social relationships, jobs, sense of competition, pursuit of success  3. Dysfunctional functions: athletic ability trumps academic ability when recruiting college  students    Social Conflict:  1. Expensive sports vs inexpensive­ sports are a reflection of social standing  a. Feminist: men have dominated sports  b. Race: Whites are “thinkers” and Blacks are “speed and reactive ability”     Symbolic Interaction: sports are less of a system than an ongoing process  1. Each player plays for different reasons    Chapter 2:  ​ 2.1 Explain how scientific evidence often challenges common sense.  Science: ​logical system that bases knowledge on direct, systematic observation  Empirical evidence:​ science rests on this; information we can verify with our senses    ❖ Growing up we all heard many widely accepted “truths,” been bombarded by “expert”  advice in popular media, and felt pressure to accept the opinions of people around us.  ➢ Instead, we need to evaluate the real hardcore facts that sociology provides for  us.   ​ 2.2 Describe sociology’s three research orientations.  Positive psychology:​ study of society based on systematic observations of social behavior;  assumes that an objective reality exists “out there”   Operationalize a variable:​ specifying exactly what is to be measured before assigning a value to  a variable    ​ ​ Ex: concept­social class  ​ ​       variable­upper, middle, lower  ​       operationalize­income level, years of schooling, etc  Reliability:​ consistency in measurement   Validity:​ measuring exactly what you intend to measure  Spurious correlation:​ apparent but false relationship between two (or more) variables that is  caused by some other variable  ​ ​ ● Interview: tracking people down can be costly and take a lot of time; subjects can be  easily influenced by interviewer and wording, however it is open ended and they can  follow­up with follow­up questions  ● Participant Observation: investigates systematically observe people while joining them in  their routine activities; allows inside look at social life in a natural setting (case study)  ● Existing Sources: saves time and money   ● Inductive logical thought: reasoning that transform specific observations into general  theory  ○ Deductive logical thought: reasoning that transforms general theory into specific  hypothesis suitable for testing     ***See table on page 52***    Ten Steps in Sociological Investigation:  1. What is your topic?  2. What have others already learned?  3. What exactly are your questions?  4. What will you need to carry out the research?  5. Are there ethical concerns?  6. What method will you use?  7. How will you record the data?  8. What does the data tell you?  9. Conclusions?  10. Share what you’ve learned.      Week 1: Lecture Notes  Theory and Metatheory  Metatheory:​ assumptions about the world that cannot be proven true or false  ● Ex: Society is based on consensus and cooperation vs society is based on conflict,  power, and domination  Theory:​ a set of interrelated causal statements that can be proven false  Falsifiability: ​the criterion of demarcation of science, according to Karl Popper; null and  alternative hypothesis  ● Logical reason: theory that all crows are black, until you find one that isn’t  ● Psychological reason: We see what we look for; we like to be right, not wrong    Theories we want:  1. Simple rather than complex  2. Explain a lot rather than a little  3. Not tied to a specific time or place    ❖ Example of a good theory: Emile Durkheim’s study of suicide­ Protestants in Europe  around 1900 committed more suicide than Catholics.   ➢ Why? He found that h ​ igher social obligations (bonds) → lower suicide rates          


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