SOC103H1 Lecture Notes - Hidden Curriculum, Altruistic Suicide, Solidarity
Topic 1 – Introduction to Sociology – (Week 1 Lecture; SQ chp1-3; NS chp 1)
SQ chp 1-3:
Credentialism: a primary reliance on credentials for screening purpose of conferring jobs or social status;
Methodology for Canadian Sociology:
Quantitative: collect information using surveys and other techniques that allow sociologists to turn
people’s attitudes and actions into numbers that can be analyzed statistically;
Historical-Comparative: collect information from historical materials (archival records, diaries, newspapers,
secondary historical accounts, etc.), often comparing two or more places or periods to
identify key sociological differences.
Interpretive: observe people in natural social settings to gauge the meanings people attach to various
aspects of social life.
NS chp 1:
Sociology: the systematic study of human behavior in social context;
Social solidarity: a. the degree to which group members share beliefs and values;
b. the intensity and frequency of their interaction;
Altruistic suicide: occurs in settings that exhibit high levels of socials solidarity; results from norms very
tightly governing behavior.
Anomic suicide: occurs in settings that exhibit low levels of social solidarity; results from vaguely defined
norms governing behavior.
Social structure: relatively stable patterns of social relations;
Microstructure: relatively intimate social relations formed during face-to-face interaction (e.g.Families,
friendship circles, work associations.)
Macrostructure: overarching patterns of social relations that lie outside and above one’s circle of intimates
and acquaintances, e.g. classes, bureaucracies, and power systems such as patriarchy.
the traditional system of economic and political inequality between women and men;
Global structures: patterns of social relations that lie outside and above the national level:
(e.g. international organizations, patterns of worldwide travel and communication,
and the economic relations between and among countries.)
Sociological imagination: the quality of mind that enables a person to see the connection between
personal troubles and social structures.
Scientific revolution: it encouraged the view that sound conclusions about the workings of society must be
based on solid evidence, not just speculation.
Democratic revolution: it suggested that people are responsible for organizing society and that human
intervention can therefore solve social problems;
Industrial revolution: rapid economic transformation (1780s) that involved the large-scale application of
science and technology to industrial processes, the creation of factories, and the
formation of a working class.
Theory: a tentative explanation of some aspect of social life that states how and why certain facts are
Research: the process of carefully observing social reality to assess the validity of a theory;
Values: ideas about what is right and wrong, good and bad.
Functionalism: a theoretical tradition that focuses on social structures bringing equilibrium and stability;
Dysfunctional consequences: effects of social structures that create social instability;
Manifest functions: visible and intended effects of social structures
(e.g. school as in transmitting knowledge);
Latent functions: invisible and unintended effects of social structures;
(e.g. school as in developing a youth culture conflicting with parent’s value);
Conflict theory: a theoretical tradition that focuses on classes conflicts;
Protestant ethic: the Protestant belief originating in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries that religious
doubts can be reduced, and a state of grace ensured, if people work diligently and live
Symbolic interactionism: empathetically understanding people’s motives and the meanings they attach to
things to gain a clear sense of the significance of their actions;
Feminist Theory: a theoretical tradition saying that the inequalities of patriarchy can and should be
changed for the benefit of the entire society;
Postindustrial Revolution: the technology – driven shift from manufacturing to service industries and the
consequences of that shift for virtually all human activities.
Ethno methodology: the study of how people make sense of what others do and say in terms of norms that
exist independently of individual social actors;
Addition vocabs from Week 1 Lecture
Interaction: face to face communication among people who act and react with each other;
Interaction Order: a system of face to face relations organized by status;
Status: a recognized position in a social interaction; (e.g. students & Professors);
Emotion Management: the ability to modify and suppress one’s own emotions and expressions;
Emotion Labor: the emotion management that one does as part of one’s job and for which one is paid.
Status Shield: social status that protects its owner from the emotions or actions of another;
Topic 2- Socialization and Education (Week 2 Lecture; NS chp 12; SQ chp 4)
SQ chp 4:
Early adulthood: no longer adolescents, but not yet ready to assume the full responsibilities of an adult;
NS chp 12:
Selection: the process by which the structure of schooling feeds into broader patterns of social
Streaming: splitting students into curricular groupings, one typically bound for postsecondary schooling,
one headed for general training;
Sponsored mobility: a form of educational competition in which relatively few youths are selected early in
life to enter elite universities;
Contest mobility: a form of educational competition in which most youths are grouped into the same
school and exposed to the same curriculum, and in which relatively large numbers are
directed to higher education;
Universalism: treating everyone as equal, rights-bearing individuals;
Meritocracy: a system in which social rewards go to people with talent who exert effort in open
Hidden curriculum: comprises elements of school content, such as rules, procedures, structures and norms
that can shape students in convert ways.
Total institution: an all-controlling organization that remakes people’s entire identities, where people are
isolated from the larger society and are strictly controlled by a specialized staff.
(e.g. boarding schools);
Human capital theory: emphasized how schooling can enhance productive skills and thereby generate
wealth for both individuals and society;
Credential inflation: takes place when labor-market competition encourages individuals to acquire
schooling and employers raise required credential levels for reasons that are
connected to their needs for skilled employees;
Professionalization: the process by which an occupation attempts to raise its social standing, often
including the creation of formal educational credentials;
Progressive pedagogy: an educational movement that emphasizes student-directed learning, less
structured curricula, and an emphasis on inspiring student to be intrinsically
motivated in their studies;
Additional Vocabs from Week 2 Lecture
Socialization: the process of learning culture and becoming aware of yourself as you interact with others;
Education: a process of socialization whereby knowledge and cultural know-how is transmitted;
Sociobiology: The role of biology, or genes, not only count for physical capacities, also count for specific
social practices and behaviors. ( i.e., potential for crimes)
Habitus: a psychic structure composed of a set of unconscious dispositions that shaped patterns of thought,
outlook, behavior, and taste.