Sociology: Unit 1 Studying Society

Studying society, AQA GCSE Sociology Unit 1


The Sociological Approach

Defining Sociology

  • Sociology explores the social factors that shape human behaviour and the way that society influences our daily lives.
  • Sociology is often defined as the study of society. A 'society' can be defined as a group of people who share a culture or way of life.

What Sociologists Study

In studying society, sociologists ask questions about its social structures and social processes and they explore the social issues facing people in society.

Social Structures: The different groups and institutions that make up society.

Social Processes: The means by which something takes place in society.

Social Issues: Issues and problems that affect individuals, groups and communities in there daily lives.

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The Sociological Approach continued...

Sociology and other approaches

Contrasting sociology and psychology;

  • Psychologists focus on inividual behaviour. They study tops like mental illness. 
  • Sociologists study the social influences on human life. They focus on group behaviour rather than individual behaviour.

Contrasting Sociology and Biology.

  • Biologists look for biological causes or characteristics when studying human behaviour.
  • Sociologists view behaviour as social or cultural rather than biological.

Contrasting Sociology and Journalism

  • Journalism: Research is less thourough and can be biased/ one sided.
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