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Defining the Sociology Need of sociology Sociology and the Social Sciences The Development of Sociology

The term sociology was coined by Auguste Comte , a French philosopher ,in 1839.

Sociology is derived from the Latin word Societus meaning society and the Greek word logos meaning study or science The meaning of sociology is thus the the science of society

1. The study of human social behaviour, especially the study of the origins, organization, institutions, and development of human society. 2. Analysis of a social institution or societal segment as a selfcontained entity or in relation to society as a whole.

Sociology has been defined in a number of ways by different sociologists. No single definition has yet been accepted as completely satisfactory. For our purpose of study a few definitions may be cited here. Auguste Comete, the founding father of sociology, defines sociology as the science of social phenomena subject to natural and invariable laws, the discovery of which is the object of investigation". Kingsley Davis says that "Sociology is a general science of society". Harry M. Johnson opines that "sociology is the science that deals with social groups". Emile Durkheim: "Science of social institutions".

Park regards sociology as "the science of collective behaviour. Marshal Jones defines sociology as "the study of man-inrelationship-to-men". Alex Inkeles says, "Sociology is the study of systems of social action and of their inter-relations". Kimball Young and Raymond W. Mack say, "Sociology is the scientific study of social aspects of human life".

A careful examination of various definitions cited above, makes it evident that sociologists differ in their opinion about definition of sociology.

However, the common idea underlying all the definitions mentioned above is that sociology is concerned with man, his social relations and his society.

The study of people in groups

Groups in the process of selfself-formation through the actions of individuals

Through the actions and forces of the groups themselves

Sociology is the scientific study of human society and social interactions.

What makes sociology scientific?

The Scientific Method

Science is ...a body of systematically arranged knowledge that shows the operation of general laws. As a science, sociology employs the scientific method

Analyze Data

Gather Data

Choose research design

Formulate hypotheses

Review of literature

Sociology is the scientific study of social behaviour of humans. Sociology studies the social, economic, political, and religious activities of people. Sociology has its importance in analysing the various aspects of communities and families, and their behaviour in social change and mobility, bureaucracy, addictions, crime and law, and all that influences people behaviour. They can analyse stuff and it makes it better to know about this information because it can get you somewhere .

Sociology is the study of the social part of us, the pattern of interaction with other people which is necessary to our very existence. Sociology has been described as 'the scientific study of human group behaviour and 'the application of scientific methods of inquiry to the puzzles of social life. We all participate in any number of social groups, many of which overlap. Sociologists study how and why these groups interact with each other and how the interactions affect their members. Such analyses not only yield a clearer understanding of society and its components, but also allow sociologists to see both the causes and the possible remedies for our social problems.

Here are two main schools of thought regarding the scope of Sociology: (1) The Specialist or Formalistic school and (2) the Synthetic school. There is a good deal of controversy about the scope of Sociology between the two schools. The supporter of first school believe that Sociology is a specific science and the scope should be limited whereas others believe that it is a general science and its scope is very vast.

Areas of sociology
Social organization It is the study of the various institutions, social groups, social stratification, social mobility, bureaucracy, ethnic groups and relations, and other similar subjects like family, education, politics, religion, economy, and so on and so forth. The Sociological Perspective Social psychology It is the study of human nature as an outcome of group life, social attitudes, collective behaviour, and personality formation. It deals with group life and the individual's traits, attitudes, beliefs as influenced by group life, and it views man with reference to group life.

Social change and disorganization It is the study of the change in culture and social relations and the disruption that may occur in society, and it deals with the study of such current problems in society such as juvenile delinquency, criminality, drug addiction, family conflicts, divorce, population problems, and other similar subjects. Human ecology It deals with the nature and behaviour of a given population and its relationships to the group's present social institutions. For instance, studies of this kind have shown the prevalence of mental illness, criminality, delinquencies, prostitution, and drug addiction in urban centers and other highly developed places.

Population or demography It is the study of population number, composition, change, and quality as they influence the economic, political, and social system. Sociological theory and method It is concerned with the applicability and usefulness of the principles and theories of group life as bases for the regulation of man's environment, and includes theory building and testing as bases for the prediction and control of man's social environment. Applied sociology It utilizes the findings of pure sociological research in various fields such as criminology, social work, community development, education, industrial relations, marriage, ethnic relations, family counselling, and other aspects and problems of daily life.

Nature of sociology
Sociology can be described as all of the following: The study of society. Academic discipline body of knowledge given to - or received by - a disciple (student); a branch or sphere of knowledge, or field of study, that an individual has chosen to specialise in. Field of science widely-recognized category of specialized expertise within science, and typically embodies its own terminology and nomenclature. Such a field will usually be represented by one or more scientific journals, where peer reviewed research is published. There are many sociology-related scientific journals. Social science field of academic scholarship that explores aspects of human society.