SOCIOL 1A06 Study Guide - Quiz Guide: Laud Humphreys, Cultural Capital, Consumerism
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Sociology Quiz 1 Notes
The Sociological Imagination / Sociological Theories
Ch.1 – New Society
*See Table 1.1 pg 18
Groups with a higher level of social solidarity tend to have lower suicide rates than
groups with lower social solidarity.
The likelihood of committing suicide decreases with the degree to which that person is
anchored to society.
Sociological Imagination (Origins)
First Pillar; using evidence to make a case for a particular point of view. (Scientific
Second Pillar; the realization that people control society and can change it. (Democratic
Third Pillar; people can intervene to improve society resulting in the creation of the
sociological imagination. (Industrial Revolution)
Order Theories – Support status-quo
Change theories – making social change / revolution
Macro-sociology – society shapes us (external / social structures)
Micro-Sociology – we shape society
Order Theory (Macro Level)
Stress that human behaviour is governed by the stable patterns of social relations or
How social structures maintain their stability.
Emphasize that social structures are based mainly on shared values.
Maintaining balance solves the problems.
Conflict Theory – it is our economic conditions of life that shape how we life
Change Theory (Macro Level)
Karl Marx (predicted capitalism would be replaced by socialism)
Focuses on relations among classes
Shows how patterns of inequality in society produce social stability and social change.
Stresses how members of privileged groups try to maintain their advantages.
Argues that eliminating privilege will lower the level of conflict and increase the sum
total of human welfare.
Symbolic Interactionism – Society is created through our everyday interaction.
Change Theory (Micro Level)
Interested in understanding subjectivity and how our interactions create a sense of
Focuses on face-to-face communication
People create their social circumstances
Change Theory (Micro & Macro)
Gender relations and in inequalities
Holds that male domination and female subordination are determined not by biological
necessity but by structures of power and social convention
Women’s social reality
Concepts to Know
Ch.1 & 7 – SIQ – Durkheim and Suicide
Egoistical Suicide – results from the lack of integration of the member of a community into
Ch. 3 – SIQ – Sociology in Canada
Lecture – Music Videos
Research Methods and Ethics
Ch. 20 – New Society
Social Research – systematic, purposeful study
o Solely evidence relevant to theoretical ideas.
o HEART – methods of observation and questioning.
Science needs subjectivity (essential to changes of innovation)
o Personal values / expectations
o Filters reality
o Influence, to an extent what we see doesn’t 100% determine.
Reality doesn’t exist as a neutral scientific judge.
Observer bias: making unconscious mistakes in classifying /selecting observations.
o Prevented through use of scrutiny, skeptical reasoning, doubt, research, and
o Fraud/deceit are part of science.
Objectivity – observations free from personal values/expectations.
Scientific vs. Non-Scientific Thinking
Scientific – Problem of induction
No matter how many observations you make, you can’t infer your next
Method of collecting facts…useless if you can’t interpret them.
Skeptical thinking and public scrutiny testability and uncertainty.
Set of practices for testing knowledge claims.
Doesn’t start by collecting facts, instead with a question, hunch, or well-conceived
conjecture. Natural vs. Social Science
Both guard against distortion / bias / values.
Difference; bacteria don’t blush.
Natural: - no social norms
- Can’t consciously control surroundings / reactions like humans.
Social: - humans act / reason / decide
- Study meaningful actions…able to ask questions however data interpretation is hard.
Methods of Social Research
- Shows association or correlation
- Correlation doesn’t prove causation
o Spurious: coincidental (incorrect connection)
- Involves cause and effect.
Meaningfulness of explanations to human activity
“how to proceed with the activity”
o Participation / role play / interaction / observation
Quantitative vs. Qualitative Research
Quantitative – availability of numerical data.
Social phenomena captured nicely by stats.
Qualitative: focus on process (how, why); giving voice to “participants”
Which type is superior?
Ex. Children of divorced parents – questions that require qualitative research to answer.
Cross-Sectional vs. Longitudinal
Cross-Sectional: data taken at one point in time.
Longitudinal: study done at more than one point in time.
Example: study of adolescent mothers – longitudinal
Techniques of Social Research
1. Experiments – enable researchers to isolate causes and measure their effects.
Researcher shouldn’t be interested in building rapport.
Variable control, randomization.
Groups with a higher level of social solidarity tend to have lower suicide rates than groups with lower social solidarity. The likelihood of committing suicide decreases with the degree to which that person is anchored to society. First pillar; using evidence to make a case for a particular point of view. (scientific. Second pillar; the realization that people control society and can change it. (democratic. Third pillar; people can intervene to improve society resulting in the creation of the sociological imagination. (industrial revolution) Change theories making social change / revolution. Macro-sociology society shapes us (external / social structures) Stress that human behaviour is governed by the stable patterns of social relations or structures. Emphasize that social structures are based mainly on shared values. Conflict theory it is our economic conditions of life that shape how we life. Karl marx (predicted capitalism would be replaced by socialism) Shows how patterns of inequality in society produce social stability and social change.