Sociology Unit 1

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  • Created by: Elle99
  • Created on: 02-05-16 10:06



  • draw on key concepts like personality and aggression.
  •  experiments for example monitoring brain activity and focusing on group behaviour, social structures and social processes that influence us 


  • use a systematic approach to investigate and explain the social world using a variety of different methods.
  • Sociologists analyse the social factors of class, gender and race.
  • Sociologists may use structured/unstructured interviews.
  • Collect data to compare to offical statistics to identify trends and patterens to come to a conclusion  
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  • Genetic inheritance and Heredity links
  • blood ties 
  • Genetics inherited from mother to child affect behaviour 
  • Quantative data
  • Findings case to case basis
  • Family tree differences


  • Systematic approach
  • Identify trends and patterns compare to secondary data
  • Social factors e.g. class, gender, race
  • Qualative data (obervation, unstructured interviews)
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journalists// sociologists


  • Less systematic and thorough due to deadlines
  • Evidence biased or one sided manner 
  • Purpose to be sold, entertain-exaggeration.


  • Systematic approach
  • evidence balanced, PERVERT
  • Subject to peer review, other sociologsts evaluate research
  • Social factors, class, gender, race 
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What are gender stereotypes?

  • Stereotype- Widley expected behavioural and physical doings 
  • Expectations of society has of particular genders
  • Girls, to like pink and play with dolls
  • Boys to like blue, like football 
  • Feminists- media influence, subtle repeted-gender socialization
  • Those who dont conform labelled 'sub normal'
  • Gender-social and cultural differences between sexes
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Explain what sociologists mean by sanctions ?


  • Rewards that are used to alter behaviour or encourage social conformity
  • For example, merits for good behaviour


  • Form of consequence for an act of wrong doing
  • Gone against someones wishes 
  • Form of punishment
  • For example, detention 


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Explain what sociologists mean by Family Diversity

  • Decline in the convential nuclear family
  • increase in other types of familt structures (Rapoport and Rapoport)
  • Diversity differs from different cultures and ethnic groups
  • Increasing divorce rate in working class lead to increase of reconsituted famillies 
  • Asian communities, extended famillies. Help look after elderly 
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importance of clear research aims

  • Provide a target for which the investigation will aim towards
  • If no target, investigation will be unclear 
  • Knows what research method to use for best results e.g. qualative/quantative
  • can generate a hypothesis 
  • provide information, how long investigation will take and what findings reflect
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Explain what sociologists mean by a pilot study

  • A study but on smaller scale 
  • Usally done before real experiment to ensure no problems and research method effective
  • getting enough valid results 
  • If problems do occur, they can be resolved in order for real experiment
  • For example, questions altered if not getting the answers to fit the criteria investigating 
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ethical issue


  • May be ashamed, embarassed
  • Scared, still a victim
  • Perpertrator find out, dangerous


  • Names not published, impact on privacy 
  • Not want general public to know, may be looked down upon
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Identify what sociology mean by official statistic

Offical Statistics

  • Type of secondary data that provides statistics to summarise one year
  • Used to identify trends and patterns to come to conclusions 


  • Quantative data, invalid, dont provide true autentic picture
  • 'just a statistic' 
  • provide a simplistic view of a overall summary 
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Quantative   (

  • Gathered from social survey e.g. questionnaires 
  • converted into data: statistics, percentages, tables and graphs 
  • trends and patterns, easy comparison 
  • Reliable, easily repeated
  • Offical stastics, repeated each year 
  • Replicate the natural sciences 
  • No explainations

Qualitative   (

  • Gathered from primary; observation, unstructured interviews
  • Gathered from secondary; Historical documents, mass media
  • True insight, depth, undertsanding, valid 
  • Rich in detail 
  • Unreliable 


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How to decide who's going to be asked??

Sampling Tecniques

Systematic                                                                                                                                               Every nth number is taken. Allows the researcher to gain a random represntative sample, typical of UK population. Large sample, allow researcher to make generalizations about resreach group and make it easier for researcher to obtain names of sample.  Quick 

Quota Sample                                                                                                                                   Here, you have quota controls e.g. age, gender, ethnicity and class, You find people who fit these criterias. For example, targeting a product at a particular age group or a study on interent use certain age groups. VALID

Snowball sample                                                                                                                                    Hard to obtain a sample frame, e.g. criminals. Ask individuals you do sample to give you a name of someone else they know, sample gets bigger and bigger. Ethical issue of names and confidentiality. Criminals, covert/overt

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unstructured interviews/structured interviews

Unstructured interviews

  • Qualitative data, true authentic picture. What details presented?
  • Allows interview to move onto topics that individual feels confortable with
  • Prevents issue of sensitivity (questions too personal, be offended)
  • Enabling to explore complex issues
  • Give in depth rich account 
  • Communicate in less formal way, feels more of a conversation than interview. Encourages participant to be more open and built up trust, less likley to lie. 
  • Overt, does not incorperate issue of ethics 
  • Time consuming, expensive 
  • Interviewer must have skills to keep conversation going and let participant open up
  • Interviewer effect, if interviwer biased, results invalid
  • Not standarzied, difficult to replicate to check if findings reliable 
  • Cant do large sample sizes, results cant be generalized 
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Structured interviews

  • You can explain what questions mean
  • standarized questions, all respondents answer same questions. can be used to compare and make identify trends and patters. Make generalizations
  • Can be replicated to check reliability 
  • Participant have few oppertunities to raise new issues
  • May result in yes/no answers, lead to invalid data
  • Participant may give socially acceptable answers, lie
  • Interviewers age, class, gender effect participants response. If interviewer biased, results invalid 
  • Imposition effect, researcher already decided what questions important 
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Why a longitudinal survey useful?

A longitudinal sudy is done over a long period of time. It can examine a group from birth and show how a person has been affected by socialization. 

  • Allow researchers to examine social changes over time including; daily lives, experineces, behaviour attitudes 
  • People may change their mind and decide to not want t participate in the study 
  • Timescale, expensive 
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Identify one secondary source of data to use and w

Research collected by other sociologists, e.g. Anne Oakley. Mass media, often biased, while sociologists is moderatley accurate and many sociologists studied same topic, evaluated reliability. Older reseach show views of the past and how its changed due to different factors e.g. social attitudes. Also, collected from all arounf UK, highly representative

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Covert/Overt observation


  • Participants unaware being observed
  • information and observations watches first hand
  • Reduces the Hawthorne effect. results more general and typical view
  • Hawthorne Effect- partcipants aware and alter their behaviour to come across more positivley
  • Researcher limited to asking too many questions, may blow cover
  • Good for illegal activities, and its acceptable if participants arent harmed 
  • Argue, its unethical and morally unacceptable. 
  • Partcipiants not given the choice which they are entiled to not be invloved 
  • With criminals if found out may become dangerous 


  • Lead to hawthorne effect
  • observer effect
  • Ethical 
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Very helpful, thank you :) 



really appreciate it, thanks AQA ;) x



This was very helpful for my assessment, thank you!



super helpful, best thing everrr



very helpful , cheers!







1/5 stars 

3.0 imdb




Bushra Patel


lol, sociologists as 'perverts'. i think you're looking for observational 



what was the pervert thing?

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