Studying Society Notes

These are notes on the studying society section if unit 1 for those studying GCSE sociology with AQA

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Studying Society
Society a group of people who have a common interest and a distinctive culture
Culture the whole way of life of a group of people passed from one generation to the
Law a set of written rules regulating what may and may not be done by members of
a society
Norm an informal rule that guides our behaviour in a situation
Role patterns of behaviour expected of people in different situations
Values the belief held by a person or a social group that help to build a set of norms.
Social Science the systematic study of society and humans within society.
Social Policy important decisions made by government that aim to improve the
quality of life for the people living in their society.
Theoretical perspective looking at a social issue through the eyes of one particular
type of theorist
Consensus a general state of agreement between two parties
Conflict a general state of disagreement between two parties
Feminist someone who believes that women should have the same status and
opportunities as men
Patriarchy the belief that men dominate society and its institutions.
Marxist someone who believes in the ideas of Karl Marx and sees the main divisions
of society as being based on social class operating in a capitalist system.
Capitalism industry and services are owned by private individuals who gain their
profits from the labour powers of workers.
Quantitative data information that is presented as numbers which can be analysed
using statistical methods.
Qualitative data information in the form of text or images, that is rich in detail and
Social Stratification the way different groups in society are placed at different levels
Social class people having social status measured on things such as occupations
and assets.
Ethnicity the classification of people into groups that share the same culture, history
and identity.
Gender the social and cultural differences between the sexes.
Strata bonds or layers showing particular characteristics which are different from
those above and below.
Status the honour or prestige attached to a person's position in society
Income the money receives by an individual in a period of time (wages)
Constraint not being able to do what you want being restricted
Socialisation the lifelong process of learning a skills, customs, norms, attitudes and
values of your culture.
Conformity doing what is expected and behaving in a way that is in agreement of the
norms or your society.
Family a group of two or more persons associated by marriage, birth or adoption.
Canalisation being channelled in a certain direction.

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Formal curriculum what students learn in their timetabled lessons?
Hidden curriculum what students learn at school that is not formally taught in lesson
Sanction agreed award for positive behaviour or penalty for negative behaviour
Legislature the section of government that makes laws.
Judiciary the section of government that applies the law.
Poverty being poor
Welfare state the government taking responsibility for the health and financial
wellbeing of its population.…read more

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Triangulation checking the accuracy of the data collected through one method by
comparing it with data collected by another method
Ethnography looking at the whole way of life of a group.
Sampling techniques
Random Sample a small group has been chosen from the sampling from, where
they all have an equal chance, at random
Stratified Sample mirroring the particular distributions of a particular groups as in you
larger population
Systematic Sampling Using a sample frame and pick every 10th or 15th person.…read more

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Be careful not to put yourself in danger or ask too personal questions. You should promise
anonymity and confidentiality. You should also check that you have informed consent
especially with young people, children, and other vulnerable groups.
Qualitative Data
Qualitative data is in the form of text or images that is rich in description and detail. This gives
more detail than quantitative data.…read more


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