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103 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Sociology
the systematic study of social interaction at a variety of levels
sociological imagination
the intersection between individual lives and larger social influences
microsociology
the study of small-scale patterns of individuals' social interaction in specific settings
theory
the set of statements that explains why a phenomenon occurs
empirical
information that is based on observations, experiments, or experiences rather than on ideology, religion, or intuition
social facts
aspects of social life, external to the individual, that can be measured
social solidarity
social cohesiveness and harmony
division of labor
an interdependence of different tasks and occupations, characteristic of industrialized societies, that produce social unity and facilitate change
capitalism
an economic system in which the ownership of the means of production - like land, factories, large sums of money, and machines - is in private hands
alienation
the feeling of separation from one's group or society
value free
separating one's personal values, opinions, ideology, and beliefs from scientific research
functionalism (structural functionalism)
an approach that maintains that society is a complex system of interdependent parts that work together to ensure a society's survival
dysfunctional
social patterns that have a negative impact on a group or society
manifest functions
functions that are intended and recognized; they are present and clearly evident
latent functions
functions that are unintended and unrecognized; they are present but not immediately obvious
conflict theory
an approach that examines the ways in which groups disagree, struggle over power, and compete for scarce resources (such as property, wealth, and prestige)
feminist theories
approaches that try to explain the social, economic, and political positions of women in society with a view of freeing women from traditionally oppressive expectations, constraints, roles, and behavior
symbolic interactionism (interactionism)
a micro-level perspective that looks at individuals' everyday behavior through the communication of knowledge, ideas, beliefs, and attitudes
interaction
action in which people take each other into account in their own behavior
social research
research that examines human behavior
scientific method
the steps in the research process that include careful data collection, exact measurement, accurate recording and analysis of the findings, thoughtful interpretation of results, and, when appropriate, a generalization of the findings to a larger group
variable
a characteristic that can change in value or magnitude under different conditions
hypothesis
a statement of a relationship between two or more variables that researchers want to test
independent variable
a characteristic that determines or has an effect on the dependent variable
independent variable
the outcome, which may be affected by the independent variable
reliability
the consistency with which the same measure produces similar results time after time
validity
the degree to which a measure is accurate and really measures what it claims to measure
deductive reasoning
reasoning that begins with a theory, prediction, or general principle that is then tested through data collection
inductive reasoning
reasoning that begins with a specific observation, followed by data collection and the development of a general conclusion or theory
population
any well-defined group of people (or things) about whome researchers want to know something
sample
a group of people (or things) that are representative of the population researchers wish to study
probability sample
a sample for which each person (or things, such as an e-mail address) has an equal chance of being selected because the selection is random
nonprobability sample
a sample for which little or no attempt is made to get a representative cross section of the population
qualitative research
that examines nonnumerical material and interprets it
quantitative research
research that focuses on a numerical analysis of people's responses or specific characteristics
surveys
a systematic method for collecting data from respondents, including questionnaires, face-to-face or telephone interviews, or a combination of these
secondary analysis
examination of data that have been collected by someone else
field research
data collection by systematically observing people in their natural surroundings
content analysis
data collection method that systematically examines some form of communication
experiment
a carefully controlled artificial situation that allows researchers to manipulate variables and measure the effects
experimental group
the group of subjects in an experiment who are exposed to the independent variable
control group
the group of subjects in an experiment who are not exposed to the independent variable
evaluation research
research that relies on all of the standard data collection techniques to assess the effectiveness of social programs in both the public and the private sectors
culture
the learned and shared behaviors, beliefs, attitudes, values, and material objects that characterize a particular group or society
society
a group of people that has lived and worked together long enough to become an organized population and to think of themselves as a social unit
culture
the learned and shared beheaviors, beliefs, attitudes, values, and material objects that characterize a particular group or society
society
a group of people that has lived and worked together long enough to become an organized population and to think of themselves as a social unit
material culture
the tangible objects that members of a society make, use, and share
nonmaterial culture
the shared set of meanings that people in a society use to interpret and understand the world
symbol
anything that stands for something else and has a particular meaning for people who share a culture
language
a system of shared symbols that enables people to communicate with one another
norms
a society's specific rules concerning right and wrong behavior
folkways
norms that members of a society (or a group within a society) look upon as not being critical and that may be broken without severe punishment
mores
norms that members of a society consider very important because they maintain moral and ethical behavior
laws
formal rules about behavior that are defined by a political authority that has the power to punish violators
sanctions
rewards for good or appropriate behavior and/or penalties for bad or inappropriate behavior
ideal culture
the beliefs, values, and norms that people in a society say they hold or follow
real culture
the actual everyday behavior of people in a society
cultural universals
customs and practices that are common to all societies
culture shocks
a sense of confusion, uncertainty, disorientation, or anxiety that accompanies exposure to an unfamiliar way of life of environment
subculture
a group or category of people whose distinctive ways of thinking, feeling, and acting differ somewhat from those of the larger society
counterculture
a group or category of people who deliberately oppose and consciously reject some of the basic beliefs, values, and norms of the dominant culture
ethnocentrism
the belief that one's culture and way of life are superior to those of other groups
cultural relativism
the belief that no culture is better than another and that a culture should be judged by its own standards
multiculturalism(cultural pluralism)
the coexistence of several cultures in the same geographic area without any one culture dominating another
popular culture
the beliefs, practices, activities, and products that are widely shared among a population in everyday life
mass media
forms of communication designed to reach large numbers of people
cultural imperialism
the influence or domination of the cultural values and products of one society over those of another
cultural integration
the consistency of various aspects of society that promotes order and stability
cultural lag
the gap when nonmaterial culture changes more slowly than material culture
socialization
the lifelong process of social interaction in which the individual acquires a social identity and ways of thinking, feeling, and acting that are essential for effective participation in a society
internalization
the process of learning cultural behaviors and expectations so deeply taht we assume they are correct and accept them without question
sociobiology
a theoretical approach that applies biological principles to explain the behavior of animals, including human beings
social learning theories
approaches whose central notion is that people learn new attitudes, beliefs, and ehaviors through social interaction, especially during childhood
looking-glass self
a self-image based on how we think others see us
self
an awareness of one's social identity
role taking
learning to take the perspective of others
significant others
the people who are important in one's life, such as parents or other primary caregivers and siblings
anticipatory socialization
the process of learning how to perform a role one doesn't yet occupy
impression management
the process of providing information and cues to others to present oneself in a favorable light while downplaying or concealing one's less appealing qualities
reference groups
groups of people who shape an individual's self-image, behavior, values, and attitudes in different contexts
agents of socialization
the individuals, groups, or institutions that teach us what we need to know to participate effectively in society
peer group
any set of people who are similar in age, social status, and interests
resocialization
the process of unlearning old ways of doing things and adopting new attitudes, values, norms, and behavior
total institutions
places where people are isolated from the rest of society, stripped of their former identities, and required to conform to new rules and behavior
social interaction
the process by which we act toward and react to people around us
social structure
an organized pattern of behavior that governs people's relationships
status
a social position that a person occupies in a society
status set
a collection of social statuses that an individual occupies at a given time
ascribed status
a social position that a person is born into
achieved status
a social position that a person attains through personal effort or assumes voluntarily
master status
an ascribed or achieved status that determines a person's identity
status inconsistency
the conflict or tension that arises from occupying social positions that are ranked differently
role
the behavior expected of a person who has a particular status
role performance
the actual behavior of a person who occupies a status
role set
the different roles attached to a single status
role conflict
the frustrations and uncertainties a person experiences when confronted with the requirements of two or more statuses
role strain
the stress arising from incompatible demands among roles within a single status
self-fulfilling prophecy
a situation where if we define something as real and act upon it, it can, in fact, become real
ethnomethodology
the study of how people construct and learn to share definitions of reality that make everyday interactions possible
dramaturgical analysis
a technique that examines social interaction as if occurring on a stage where people play different roles and act out scenes for the audiences with whom they interact
social exchange theory
the perspective whose fundamental premise is the any social interaction between two people is based on each person's trying to maximize rewards (or benefits) and minimize punishments (or costs)
nonverbal communication
messages that are sent without using words