How can we help?

You can also find more resources in our Help Center.

299 terms

final sociology

A feeling of isolation and powerlessness that may affect workers in a bureaucracy.
A formal organization that is designed to accomplish goals and tasks through the efforts of a large number of people in the most efficient way possible.
Formal Organization
A complex and structured secondary group that was deliberately created to achieve specific goals in an efficient manner.
Glass Ceiling
A collection of attitudinal and organizational biases in the work place that prevent women from advancing to leadership positions.
A tendency of in- group members to conform without critically testing, analyzing, and evaluating ideas, that result in a narrow view of an issue.
Ideal Types
General traits that describe a social phenomenon rather than every case.
In- Groups
Sets of people who share a sense of identity and "we-ness" that typically excludes and devalues outsiders.
Iron Law of Oligarchy
The tendency of a bureaucracy to become increasingly dominated by a small group of people.
Out- Groups
People who are treated and viewed negatively because they are seen as having values, beliefs, and other characteristics different from those of an in- group.
Primary Group
A relatively small group of people who engage in intimate face- to- face interaction over an extended period of time.
Reference Group
A collection of people who shape our behavior, values, and attitudes.
Secondary Group
A large, usually formal, impersonal, and temporary collection of people who pursue a specific goal or activity.
Social Group
Two or more people who interact with one another and who share a common identity and a sense of belonging or "we-ness."
Social Institutions
An organized and established social system that meets one or more of societies basic needs.
Social Network
A web of social ties that links individuals to others.
Voluntary Association
A formal organization created by people who share a common set of interests and who are not paid for their participation.
The condition in which people are unsure of how to behave because of absent, conflicting, or confusing social norms.
Corporate Crimes
White- collar crimes committed by executives to benefit themselves and their companies. (AKA Organizational crimes)
A violation of societal norms and rules for which punishment is specified by public law.
Crime Control Model
An approach that holds that crime rates increase when offenders don't fear punishment.
Criminal Justice System
The government agencies- including police, courts, and prisons- that are charged with enforcing laws, passing judgement on offenders, and changing criminal behavior.
Researchers who use scientific methods to study the nature, extent, cause, and control of criminal behavior.
White- collar crimes that are conducted online.
Behavior that violates expected rules or norms.
Differential Association
People learning deviance through interaction, especially with significant others.
Labeling Theory
A perspective that holds that society's reaction to behavior is a major factor in defining oneself or others as deviant.
Occupational Crime
Crimes committed in the work place by individuals acting solely on their own personal interests.
Organized Crime
Activities of individuals and groups that supply illegal goods and services for profit.
Primary Deviance
The initial violation of a norm or law.
The social control approach that holds that appropriate treatment can change offenders into productive, law- abiding citizens.
Punishments or rewards for obeying or violating a norm.
Secondary Deviance
Rule breaking behavior that people adopt in response to the reaction of others.
Social Control
The techniques and strategies that regulate peoples behavior in society.
A negative label that devalues a person and changed his or her self concept and social identity.
Strain Theory
The idea that people may engage in deviant behavior when they experience a conflict between goals and the means available to obtain those goals.
Victim Survey
A method of gathering data that involves interviewing people about their experiences as crime victims.
Victimless Crimes
Acts that violate laws but involve individuals that don't consider themselves as victims.
White- Collar Crimes
Illegal activities committed by high status individuals in the course of their occupation.
Absolute Poverty
Not having enough money to afford the most basic necessities of life.
Those who own the means of production and can amass wealth and power.
Closed Stratification System
A system in which movement from one social position to another is limited by ascribed statuses such as one's sex, skin color, and family background.
Conspicuous Consumption
Lavish spending on goods and services to display one's social status and enhance one's prestige.
Corporate Welfare
An array of direct subsidies, tax breaks, and assistance that the government has created for businesses.
Davis- Moore Thesis
The functionalist view that social stratification has beneficial consequences for a society's operations.
Feminization of Poverty
The higher likelihood that female heads of households will be poor.
Horizontal Mobility
Moving from one position to another at the same class level.
Intergenerational Mobility
Moving up or down the class hierarchy relative to the position of one's parents.
Intragenerational Mobility
Moving up or down the class hierarchy over a lifetime.
Life Chances
The extent to which people have positive experiences and can secure the good things in life because they have economic resources.
A belief that individuals are rewarded for what they do and how well rather than on the basis of their ascribed status.
Open Stratification System
A system that is based on an individuals achievement and allows movement up or down.
Poverty Line
The minimal level of income that the federal government considers necessary for basic subsistence.
The ability of individuals or groups to achieve goals, control events, and maintain influence over others despite opposition.
Respect, recognition, and regard attached to social positions.
Workers who sell their labor for wages.
Relative Poverty
Not having enough money to maintain an average standard of living.
Social Class
A category of people who have a similar standing or rank in a society based on wealth, education, power, prestige, and other valued resources.
Social Mobility
A persons ability to move up or down the class hierarchy.
Social Stratification
The hierarchical ranking of people in a society who have different access to different resources, such as property, prestige, power, and status.
Socioeconomic Status
An overall ranking of a persons position in the class hierarchy based on income, education, and occupation.
People who are persistently poor and seldom employed, segregated residentially, and relatively isolated from the rest of the population.
Vertical Mobility
Moving up or down the class hierarchy.
The money and other economic assets that a person or family owns, including property and income.
Working Class
People who work at least 27 weeks a year but receive such low wages that they live in or near poverty.
The expulsion of an embryo or fetus from the uterus.
Those who lack any interest in or desire for sex.
Those who are sexually attracted to members of both sexes.
Learned attitudes and behaviors that characterize people of one sex or the other.
Gender Identity
A perception of oneself as either masculine or feminine.
Gender Pay Gap
The overall income difference between women and men in the work place. (AKA the wage gap)
Gender Roles
The characteristics, attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that society expects of females and males.
Gender Stereotype
Expectations about how people will look, act, think, and feel based on their sex.
Gender Stratification
People's unequal access to wealth, power, status, prestige, and other valued resources as a result of their sex.
The belief that heterosexuality is superior to and more natural than homosexuality or bisexuality.
Those who are sexually attracted to people of the opposite sex.
The fear and hatred of homosexuality.
Those who are sexually attracted to people of the same sex.
The graphic depiction of images that cause sexual arousal.
The biological characteristics with which we are born.
An attitude or behavior that discriminates against one sex, usually females based on the assumed superiority of the other sex.
Sexual Harassment
Any unwanted sexual advance, request for sexual favors, or other conduct of a sexual nature that makes a person uncomfortable and interferes with his or her work.
Sexual Orientation
A preference for sexual partners of the same sex, of the opposite sex, or of both sexes.
Sexual Script
Specifies the formal and informal norms for legitimate or unacceptable sexual activity, which individuals are eligible sexual partners, and the boundaries of sexual behavior.
Transgendered people
Those who are transexuals, intersexuals, or transvestites.
A formal system of racial segregation.
A process of conforming to the culture of the dominant group and intermarrying with that group.
Contact Hypothesis
The idea that the more people get to know members of a minority group personally, the less likely they are to be prejudice against that group.
Any act that treats a person unequally because of their group membership.
Dominant Group
Any physically or culturally distinctive group that has the most economic and political power, the greatest privileges and the highest social class.
Ethnic Group
A set of people who identify with a common national origin or cultural heritage that includes language, geographic routes, food, customs, traditions, and or religion.
The belief that one's own culture, society, or group is inherently superior to others.
Gendered Racism
The combined and cumulative effects of inequality due to racism or sexism.
The systematic effort to kill all members of a particular ethnic, religious, political, racial, or national group.
Individual Discrimination
Harmful action directed intentionally, on a one- to- one basis by a member of a dominant group against a minor of a minority group.
Institutional Discrimination
Unequal treatment and opportunities that members of a minority group experience as a result of the everyday operations of a society's law, rules, policies, practices, and customs.
Internal Colonialism
The unequal treatment and subordinate status of groups within a nation.
Minority Group
A group of people who may be subject to differential and unequal treatment because of their physical, cultural, or other characteristics, such as gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, or skin color.
Marriage or sexual relations between a man and a woman of different races.
Minority groups retain their culture but have equal social standing in a society.
An attitude, positive or negative, toward people because of their group membership.
A group of people who share physical characteristics, such as skin color and facial features, that are passed on through reproduction.
Racial- Ethnic Group
A group of people who have both distinctive physical and cultural characteristics.
A set of beliefs that one's own racial group is naturally superior to other groups.
Individuals or groups whom people blame for their own problems or short comings.
The physical and social separation of dominant and minority groups.
An exaggerated generalization about a category of people.
An economic system in which the ownership of the means of production is in private hands.
Conflict Theory
An approach that examines the ways in which groups disagree, struggle over power, and compete for scarce resources.
Division of Labor
An interdependence of different tasks and occupations, characteristic of industrialized societies, that produce social unity and facilitate change.
Social patterns that have a negative impact on a group or society.
Information that is based on observations, experiments, or experiences rather than on ideology, religion, or intuition.
Feminist Theories
Approaches that try to explain the social, economic, and political position of women in a society.
An approach that maintains that society is a complex system of interdependent parts that work together to ensure a societies survival.
Action in which people take each other into account in their own behavior.
Latent Functions
Functions that are unintended and unrecognized; they are present but not immediately obvious.
The study of large- scale patterns and processes that characterize society as a whole.
Manifest Functions
Functions that are intended and recognized; they are present and clearly evident.
The study of small scale patterns of individuals social interaction in specific settings.
Social Facts
Aspects of social life, external to the individual, that can be measured.
Social Solidarity
Social cohesiveness and harmony.
Sociological Imagination
The intersection between individual lives and larger social influences.
The systematic study of social interaction at a variety of levels.
Symbolic Interactionism
A micro- level perspective that looks at individuals everyday behavior through the communication of knowledge, ideas, beliefs, and attitudes.
A set of statements that explains why a phenomenon occurs.
Value Free
Separating one's personal values, opinions, ideology, and beliefs from scientific research.
Content Analysis
Data collection method that systematically examines examples of some form of communication.
Control Group
The group of subjects in an experiment who are not exposed to the independent variable.
Deductive Reasoning
Reasoning that begins with a theory, prediction, or general principle that is then tested through data collection.
Dependent Variable
The outcome, which may be affected by the independent variable.
Evaluation Research
Research that uses all of the standard data collection techniques to assess the effectiveness of social programs in both the public and private sectors.
A carefully controlled artificial situation that allows researchers to manipulate variables and measure the effects.
Exerimental Group
The group of subjects in an experiment who are exposed to the independent variable.
Field Research
Data collection by systematically observing people in their natural surroundings.
A statement of a relationship between two or more variables that researchers want to test.
Independent Variable
A characteristics that determines or has an effect on the dependent variable.
Inductive Reasoning
Reasoning that begins with a specific observation, followed by data collection and the development of a general conclusion or theory.
Nonprobability Sample
A sample for which little or no attempt is made to get a representative cross section of the population.
Any well- defined group of people or things about whom researchers want to know something.
Probability Sample
A sample for which each person has an equal chance of being selected because the selection is random.
Qualitative Research
Research that examines nonnumerical material and interprets it.
Quantitative Research
Research that focuses on a numerical analysis of peoples responses or specific characteristics.
The consistency with which the same measure produces similar results time after time.
A group of people or things that are representative of the population that researchers wish to study.
Scientific Method
The steps in the research process that include careful data collection, exact measurement, accurate recording and analysis of the findings, thoughtful interpretation of the results, and when appropriate, a generalization of the findings to a larger group.
Secondary Analysis
Examination of data that have been collected by someone else.
Social Research
Research that examines human behavior.
A systematic method for collecting data from respondents including questionnaires, face- to- face or telephone interviews, or a combination of these.
The degree to which a measure is accurate and really measures what it claims to measure.
A characteristic that can change in value or magnitude under different conditions.
A group or category of people who deliberately oppose and reject some of the basic beliefs, values, and norms of the dominant culture.
Cultural Imperialism
The influence or domination of the cultural values and products of one's society over those of another.
Cultural Integration
The consistency of various aspects of a society, which promotes order and stability.
Cultural Lag
The gap when nonmaterial culture changes more slowly than material culture.
Cultural Relativism
The recognition that no culture is better than another and that a culture should be judged by its own standards.
Cultural Universals
Customs and practices that are common to all societies.
The learned and shared behaviors, beliefs, attitudes, values, and material objects that characterize a particular group or society.
Culture Shock
A sense of confusion or uncertainty that accompanies exposure to an unfamiliar way of life or environment.
Norms that members of a society look upon as not being critical and may be broken without severe punishment.
Ideal Culture
The beliefs, values, and norms that people in a society say they hold or follow.
A system of shared symbols that enables people to communicate with one another.
Formal rules about behavior that are defined by a political authority that has the power to punish violators.
Mass Media
Forms of communication designed to reach large numbers of people.
Material Culture
The tangible objects that members of a society make, use, and share.
Norms that members of a society consider very important because they maintain moral and ethical behavior.
The coexistence of several cultures in the same geographic area, without any one culture dominating another.
Nonmaterial Culture
The shared set of meaning that people in a society use to interpret and understand the world.
A society's specific rules concerning right and wrong behavior.
Popular Culture
The beliefs, practices, activities, and products that are widely shared among a population in everyday life.
Real Culture
The actual everyday behavior of people in a society.
A group of people that has lived and worked together long enough to become an organized population and to think of themselves as a social unit.
A group or category of people whose distinctive ways of thinking, feeling, and acting differ somewhat from those of the larger society.
Anything that stands for something else and has a particular meaning for people who share a culture.
The standards by which members of a particular culture define what is good or bad, moral or immoral, beautiful or ugly.
Agents of Socialization
The individuals, groups, or institutions that teach us what we need to know to participate effectively in society.
Anticipatory Socialization
The process of learning how to perform a role one does not yet occupy.
Generalized Other
A term used by George Herbert Mead to refer to people who do not have close ties to a child but who influence a child's interalization of society's norms and values.
Impression Management
The process of providing information and cues to others to present oneself in a favorable light while downplaying or concealing one's less appealing qualities.
The process of learning cultural behaviors and expectations so deeply that we assume they are correct and accept them without question.
Looking- Glass Self
A self- image based on how we think others see us.
Peer Group
Any set of people who are similar in age, social status, and interests.
A process of unlearning old ways of doing things and adopting new attitudes, values, norms, and behavior.
Role Taking
Learning to take th perspective of others.
An awareness of one's social identity.
Significant Others
The people who are important in one's life, such as parents or other primary caregivers and siblings.
Social Learning Theories
Approaches whose central notion is that people learn new attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors through social interaction, especially during childhood.
The life long process of social interaction in which the individual acquires a social identity and ways of thinking, feeling, and acting that are essential for effective particpation in a society.
A theoretical approach that applies biological principles to explain the behavior of animals, including human beings.
Total Institutions
Places where people are isolated from the rest of society, stripped of their former identities, and required to conform to new rules and behavior.
Achieved Status
A social position that a person attains through personal effort or assumes voluntarily.
Ascribed Status
A social position that a person is born into.
Dramaturgical Analysis
A technique that examines social interaction as if occuring on a stage where people play different roles and act out scenes for the audiences with whom they interact.
The study of how people construct and learn to share definitions of reality that make everyday interactions possible.
Master Status
An ascribed or achieved status that determines a persons identity.
Nonverbal Communication
Messages that are sent without using words.
The behavior expected of a person who has a particular status.
Role Conflict
The frusterations and uncertainties a person experiences when confronted with the requirements of two or more statuses.
Role Performance
The actual behavior of a person who occupies a status.
Role Set
The different roles attached to a single status.
Role Strain
The stress arising from incompatible demands among roles within a single status.
Self- Fulfilling Prophecy
A situation where if we define something as real and act upon it, it can, in face, become real.
Social Exchange Theory
The perspective whose fundamental premise is that any social interactio between two people is based on each person trying to maximize rewards and minimize punishments.
Social Interaction
The process by which we act toward and react to people around us.
Social Structure
An organized pattern of behavior that governs peoples relationships.
A social position that a person occupies in a society.
Status Inconsistency
The conflict or tension that arises from occupying social positions that are ranked differently.
Status Set
A collection of social statuses that an individual occupies at a given time.
A political system in which the state controls the lives of citizens but generally permits some degree of individual freedom.
The legitimate use of power.
Charismatic Authority
Authority based on exceptional individual abilities and characteristics that inspire devotion, trust, and obedience.
A political system in which, ideally, citizens have control over the state and its actions.
A formal organization that has the authority to make and enforce laws.
A representative of a special- interest group who tries to influence political decisions on the groups behalf.
A political system in which power is allocated solely on the basis of heredity and passed from generation to generation.
Political Action Committee (PAC)
A special- interest group set up to raise money to elect a candidate to public office.
Political Party
An organization that tries to influence and control government by recruiting, nominating, and electing its members to public office.
A social process through which individuals and groups acquire an exercise power and authority.
Power Elite
A small group of influencing people who make a nations major political decisions.
Rational- Legal Authority
Authority based on the belief that laws and appointed or elected political leaders are legitimate.
Special- Interest Group
A voluntary and organized association of people that attempts to influence public policy and policy makers on a particular issue.
A policital system in which the government controls every aspect of peoples lives.
Traditional Authority
Authority based on customs that justify the position of the ruler.
A political and economic system in which all members of a society are equal.
A giant corporation that owns a collection of companies in different industries.
Contingent Workers
People who don't expect their jobs to last or who say that their jobs are temporary.
A social entity that has legal rights, privileges, and liabilities apart from those of its members.
A process of social and economic change due to the reduction of industrial activity, especially manufactoring.
Discouraged Workers
Unemployed people who want a job and have looked for work in the proceeding year but have not searched in the past 4 weeks because they have given up.
A euphemism for firing large numbers of employees at once.
A social insitution that determines how a society produces, distributes, and conosumes goods and services.
The growth and spread of investment, trade, production, communication, and new technology around the world.
Interlocking Directorate
A situation in which the same people serve on the boards of directors of several companies or corporations.
Domination of a particular market or industry by one person or company.
Sending work or jobs to another country to cut a company's costs at home.
A market dominated by a few large producers or suppliers.
An economic and political system based on the principle of the public ownership of the production of goods and services.
Transnational Conglomerate
A corporation that owns a collection of different companies in various industries in a number of countries.
Transnational Corporation
A large company that is based in one country but operates across international boundaries.
People who have part- time jobs but want full- time work or whose jobs are below their experience and education level.
Physical or mental activity that accomplished or produces something, either goods or services.
Activity Theory
Proposes that many older people remain engaged in numerous roles and activities, including work.
Discrimination against older people.
Boomerang Generation
Young adults who have moved back into their parents home after living independently for a while or who never leave it in the first place.
Child Maltreatment
A wide range of behaviors that place a child at serious risk, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, and emotional mistreatment.
An arrangement in which two unrelated people are not married but live together and have a sexual relationship.
Continuity Theory
Posits that older adults can substitute satisfying new roles for those they've lost.
The legal dissolution of a marriage.
Dual- Earner Couples
Both partners are employed outside the home.
Egalitarian Family System
Both partners share power and authority fairly equally.
Elder Abuse
Any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm to people aged 65 or older.
The practice of selecting mates from within one's group.
The practice of selecting mates from outside one's group.
Extended Family
A family consisting of parents and children as well as other kin, such as uncles and aunts, nieces and nephews, cousins, and grandparents.
An intimate group consisting of two or more people who: 1) live together in a committed relationship, 2) care for one another and any children, 3) share close emotional ties and functions.
Fictive Kin
Nonrelatives who are accepted as part of an African American family.
Scientists who study the biological, phychological, and social aspects of aging.
Incest Taboo
Cultural norms and laws that forbid sexual intercourse between close blood relatives, such as brothers and sisters, father and daughter, or uncle and niece.
Intimate Partner Violence (IPV)
Abuse that occurs between two people in a close relationship.
Life expectency
The average length of time people of the same age will live.
A socially approved mating relationship that people expect to be stable and enduring.
Marriage Market
A process in which prospective spouses compare the assets and liabilities of eligible partners and choose the best available mate.
Matriarchal Family System
The oldest females control culture, political, and economic resources and, consequently, have power over males.
Matrilocal Residence Pattern
Newly married couples live with the wifes family.
One person is married exclusively to another person.
Neolocal Residence Pattern
Each newly married couple sets up its own residence.
No- Fault Divorce
State laws the do not require either partner to establish guilt or wrongdoing on the part of the other to ge a divorce.
Nuclear Family
A form of family consisting of married parents and their biological or adopted children.
Patriarchal Family System
The oldest men control culture, political, and economic resources and, consequently, have power over females.
Patrialocal Residence Pattern
Newly married couples live with the husbands family.
A marriage in which a man or woman has two or more spouses.
Sandwich Generation
People in middle generations who care for their own children as well as their aging parents.
Serial Monogamy
Individuals marry several people, but one at a time.
Step Family
A household in which two adults are married or living together and at least one of them has a child.
Charter Schools
Self- governing public schools that have signed an agreement with their state government to improve students education.
An emphasis on certificates or degrees to show that people have certain skills, education attainment levels, or job qualifications.
A social institution that transmitts attitudes, knowledge, beliefs, values, norms, and skills to its members through formal, systematic training.
Hidden Curriculum
School practices that transmit nonacademic knowledge, values, attitudes, norms, and beliefs which legitimize economic inequality and fill unequal work roles.
Home Schooling
Teaching children in the home as an alternative to enrolling them in a public or private elementary, middle, or high school.
Intelligence Quotient (IQ)
An index of an individuals performance on a standardized test relative to the performance level of others of the same age.
Magnet School
A public school that is typically small and offers students a distinctive program and specialized curriculum in a particular area, such as business, science, the arts, or technology.
Formal training and instruction provided in a classroom setting.
Assigning students to specific educational programs and classes based on the basis of test scores, previous grades, or perceived ability.
Public funded payments that parents can apply toward tuition or fees at a public or private school of their choice.
Charismatic Leader
A religious leader whom followers see as having exeptional or superhuman powers and qualities.
A large established religious group that has strong ties to mainstream society.
Civil Religion
Practices in which citizenship takes on religious aspects.
A religious group that is devoted to beliefs and practices that are outside of those accepted in mainstream society.
A subgroup within a religion that shares its name and traditions and is generally on good terms with the main group.
False Consciousness
An acceptance of a system that prevents people from protesting oppression.
The belief in the literal meaning of a sacred text.
New Religious Movement (NRM)
Term used in instead of cult by most sociologists.
Anything that is not related to religion.
Protestant Ethic
A belief that hard work, diligence, self- denial, frugality, and economic success will lead to salvation in the afterlife.
A social institution that involves shared beliefs, values, and practices based on the supernatural and unites believes into a community.
The ways people demonstrate their religious beliefs.
A formal and repeated behavior in which the members of a group regularly engage.
Anything that people see as mysterious, awe- inspiring, extraordinary and powerful, holy, and not part of the natural world.
A religious group that has broken away from an established religion.
The term sociologists use instead of profane to charcterize worldly rather than spiritual things.
A process of removing institutions such as education and government from the dominance or influence of religion.