An institution is any structure or mechanism of social order and cooperation governing the behavior of a set of individuals within a given human community. Institutions are identified with a social purpose and permanence, transcending individual human lives and intentions, and with the making and enforcing of rules governing cooperative human behavior. The term "institution" is commonly applied to customs and behavior patterns important to a society, as well as to particular formal organizations of government and public service. As structures and mechanisms of social order among humans, institutions are one of the principal objects of study in the social sciences, such as political science, anthropology, economics, and sociology (the latter being described by Durkheim as the "science of institutions, their genesis and their functioning"). Institutions are also a central concern for law, the formal mechanism for political rule-making and enforcement.

Types of institution
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Marriage and Family Religion Education Scientific institutions Hospitals Legal systems Military Mass media and News media Factories and Corporations Organizations Art and Culture Language

Aspects of institutions
Although individual, formal organizations, commonly identified as "institutions," may be deliberately and intentionally created by people,

historical backgrounds. developments and universal themes. as it is perhaps the most simple institution to which one may apply many fundamental sociological approaches. particularly with regard to the relationship between the nuclear family and industrial capitalism. that is.  Marriage and Family The Sociology of the family examines the family. Berger has described as inherent "methodological atheism". Whereas the sociology of religion broadly differs from theology in assuming indifference to the supernatural.the development and functioning of institutions in society in general may be regarded as an instance of emergence. which goes beyond the conscious intentions of the individual humans involved. It is most concerned with the public schooling systems of modern industrial .  Religion The sociology of religion concerns the role of religion in society: practices. develop and function in a pattern of social self-organization.  Scientific institutions The sociology of education is the study of how public institutions and individual experiences affect education and its outcomes. The sociology of the family is a common component on introductory and pre-university academic curricula. through various sociological perspectives. The sociology of religion is distinguished from the philosophy of religion in that it does not set out to assess the validity of religious beliefs. and the distinct gender roles and concepts of childhood which arose with it. institutions arise. as an institution and a unit of socialisation. There is particular emphasis on the recurring role of religion in all societies and throughout recorded history. theorists tend to acknowledge socio-cultural reification of religious practice. though the process of comparing multiple conflicting dogmas may require what Peter L.

 Hospitals The Sociology of Health and Illness examines the interaction between society and health. a sociological perspective on an illness would provide insight on what external factors caused the demographics who contracted the disease to become ill. Education is perceived as a place where children can develop according to their unique needs and potential. and school. Many would say that the purpose of education should be to develop every individual to their full potential and give them a chance to achieve as much in life as their natural abilities allow (meritocracy). It is understood by many to be a means of overcoming handicaps. Few would argue that any education system accomplishes this goal perfectly. ethnic traditions or beliefs. and vice versa. or lack of health. Education has always been seen as a fundamentally optimistic human Endeavour characterized by aspirations for progress and betterment. The sociology of medicine limits its concern to the patient-practitioner relationship and the role of health professionals in society.societies. further. It is also perceived as one of the best means of achieving greater social equality. and other cultural factors. Sociologists have demonstrated that the spread of diseases is heavily influenced by the socioeconomic status of individuals. Health. was once merely attributed to biological or natural conditions. employment. adult. arguing that the education system is designed with the intention of causing the social reproduction of inequality. . Some take a particularly negative view. The objective of this topic is to see how social life has an impact on morbidity and mortality rate. The sociology of health and illness covers sociological pathology (causes of disease and illness). This aspect of sociology differs from medical sociology in that this branch of sociology discusses health and illness in relation to social institutions such as family. achieving greater equality and acquiring wealth and social status. including the expansion of higher. and continuing education. and patient compliance or noncompliance with medical regimes. reasons for seeking particular types of medical aid. Where medical research might gather statistics on a disease.

others see it as a field of research caught up in the disciplinary tensions and competitions between the two established disciplines of law and sociology. For example. Yet. present it as a field of research on its own right within a broader social science tradition. it remains intellectually dependent mainly on mainstream sociology. social policy. It is a highly specialized subfield which examines issues related to service personnel as a distinct group with coerced collective action based on shared interests linked to survival in vocation and combat. legal institutions and legal behavior. criminology and psychology. Roger Cottrell describes the sociology of law without reference to mainstream sociology as "the systematic. Irrespective of whether the sociology of law is defined as a sub-discipline of sociology. empirical study of law as a set of social practices or as an aspect or field of social experience". instead. others regard it neither as a sub-discipline of sociology nor as a branch of legal studies and. . i. While some socio-legal scholars see the sociology of law as "necessarily" belonging to the discipline of sociology. or a field of research in its own right.e. political science. theoretically grounded.  Military Military sociology aims toward the systematic study of the military as a social group rather than as an organization. and to lesser extent on other social sciences such as social anthropology. Legal systems The sociology of law (or legal sociology) is often described as a subdiscipline of sociology or an interdisciplinary approach within legal studies. Military sociology also concerns civilian-military relations and interactions between other groups or governmental agencies. with purposes and values that are more defined and narrow than within civil society. an approach within legal studies. it draws on social theories and employs social scientific methods to study law.

and information theory. but may be broadly divided into three interrelated areas: the critique of artistic styles and aesthetic forms (genre. Researchers develop and employ theories and methods from disciplines including cultural studies. and sociological analysis (of ideological effects. art history and criticism. psychology. history and effects of various media. resist and make their own contributions to the patterning of work and shaping of work institutions.). and overlap in interests with related disciplines like mass communication. in particular." . and so on). examines "the direction and implications of trends in technological change. economics. globalization. labor markets. Mass media and News media Media studies is an academic discipline and field of study that deals with the content. political economy. reception and consumption. work organization.g. film theory. technologies and markets). until recently a crucial research area within the field of sociology of work. rhetoric. literary theory. sociology.  Factories and Corporations Industrial sociology. the 'mass media'. etc. communication. Media studies draw on traditions from both the social sciences and the humanities. philosophy. the study of the production process (e. social theory. anthropology. feminist theory. narrative. The subject varies greatly in theoretical and methodological focus. political science. managerial practices and employment relations to the extent to which these trends are intimately related to changing patterns of inequality in modern societies and to the changing experiences of individuals and families the ways in which workers challenge. communication sciences and communication studies.

"  Language Sociology of language focuses on the language's effect on the society. with whom and under what conditions. It is closely related to the field of sociolinguistics.Naqvi . It would have to do with who is 'authorized' to use what language. Members of a virtual community are self-subscribing. Organizations Interest Group: A group of persons working on behalf of or strongly supporting a particular cause.H. Virtual Communities: A group of individuals who share a common interest via e-mail. instant messages. Compelled By S. or a special segment of society.  Art and Culture The sociology of culture concerns culture³usually understood as sets of cognitive meanings³as it is manifested in society. blogs. For Georg Simmel. which focuses on the effect of the society on the language. such as an item of legislation. culture referred to "the cultivation of individuals through the agency of external forms which have been objectified in the course of history. an industry. It would have to do with how an individual or group identity is established by the language that they have available for them to use. Contrast with virtual workgroup. one's (libidinal) investment in the linguistic tools that one has access to in order to bring oneself to other people. A sociology of language would seek to understand the way that social dynamics are affected by individual and group language use. chat rooms or newsgroups. It would seek to understand individual expression.