Theoretical Terminology

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  • Created by: Tiffany
  • Created on: 02-12-11 23:12

Theoretical Terminology


Ontology is a theory’s explanation of what makes up the essence of social reality or what exists.

Epistemology is a theory’s explanation of how it is possible to gain knowledge of social reality or how we should carry out our research.

Structural theories are macro (LARGE scale), top-down and deterministic theories that see society as a real thing existing over and above us, shaping our ideas and behaviour (ontology). Their epistemology is positivist.

Social Action Theories are micro-level, bottom-up approaches that focus on the actions and interactions of individuals. Society is shaped by our choices,


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