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Lecture 1

SOC355H5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Trait Theory, Professional Code Of Quebec, ParalegalPremium

2 pages86 viewsWinter 2016

Course Code
Ronit Dinovitzer

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Lecture 1
What is a profession?
Trait theory – there are particular traits and characteristics that make an
occupation a profession
Has to have expert knowledge
Mastery of knowledge
Tasks that are inherently valuable to society
Practitioners are motivated by service to the client’s welfare and to the
Technical autonomy – they own their knowledge (lawyers who define the
scope of what legal professions do – they own law schools) they own define
and replicate their expert knowledge
Government allows them to certify, run their professions
NO one can dictate now they run it or what they do
Self – regulation – members of professional groups are in charge of
Sense of community – in this together, defining what it means to be that kind
of professional
Code of ethics – members of profession have to abide by
Problem with trait theory – are some traits more important than other? Need
to have ALL of these to be professions? (eg. CEO and MBA don’t have a code
of ethics, a sense of serving the public – debate about whether they really are
Systems of professions and knowledge claims
Abbott – provided an alt approach to defining profession
Think about professionals as a system
One group is opposing and defining itself in opposition to another group
Lawyers vs. paralegal and doctors vs. acupunctures
They all provide services to people
Have to compete over clients
They are making competing claims to the same task
A profession will develop with a jurisdiction becomes vacant
How there was an opportunity for med doctors to claim that they can
successfully cure people
When does a jurisdiction become vacant? New diagnosis that pop up OR if a
group as left it
(eg. Dr didn’t want to do teeth = dentist come in)
Relatively prestigious professions rarely face or lose these challenges
(doctors and lawyers)
Professions is a folk concept
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