Sociology and science



Believes sociology can be a science

it is an example of macro sociology 

it likes to test hypotheses with scientific methods like experiments and questionnaires

it uses deductivism to prove or disprove the hypothesis

it likes quantitative data 

it values objectivity in theories 

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Believes sociology is not yet a science 

Popper uses the deductive approach and falsification

  • sociologists use a null hypothesis to rule out causes of behaviour 
    • the famous example used is to test whether all swans are white 
      • this can be disproven by seeing a singular black swan 

Goldthorpe and Lockwood's Affluent worker study 

  • studied whether income made a person middle class 
  • by proving that 'affluent workers' in a WC area kept WC values this provided evidence against money making an individual middle class 
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Believes sociology is not a science and says it is a social construct 

It instead seek to find meanings in behaviour and seek verstehen (true understanding)

it likes to use methods such as unstructured interviews and participant observations and gains qualitative data

they value validity and subjectivity in research 

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Believes that science is not an open system because it only accepts scrutiny from their own kind

When someone outside science criticises the system they are ridiculed and idea rejected

Science is the dominant paradigm in society since the enlightenment period

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