You are on page 1of 32

Chapter 1

CHAPTER 1 THE SOCIOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE AND RESEARCH


PROCESS

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Knowledge: 1. Identify Auguste Comte, Harriet Martineau, and Herbert Spencer, and explain their
Remembering previously unique contributions to early sociology.
learned material
2. Identify Robert Park, George H. Mead, and W.E. B. Du Bois and their contributions
to American sociology.
3. Know the six steps in the conventional research process, which focuses on
deduction and quantitative research.
Comprehension: 4. Understand the sociological imagination and explain its significance in interpreting
The ability to grasp the people's actions.
meaning of the material
5. Understand the emerging ideas embedded within postmodernism.
6. Know the ethical concerns in sociological research.
Application: 7. Discuss what C. Wright Mills meant by the sociological imagination and know the
The ability to use reasons why using it will help you to better understand the social world.
material in new and
8. Understand problem formulation in conducting qualitative research.
concrete situations
Analysis: The ability to 9. Compare and contrast the field of sociology with other social sciences.
break down material into
10. Explain industrialization and urbanization as events that contributed to the
its component parts so
development of sociological thinking.
that its organizational
structure may be 11. Compare Max Webers and Karl Marx's perspectives on society and social conflict.
understood
12. Know the major assumptions of functionalism, conflict theory, and symbolic
interactionism and identify the major contributors to each perspective.
13. Know the difference between quantitative and qualitative research and give
examples of each.
Evaluation: The ability 14. Explain the major types of research methods and indicate their strengths and
to judge the value of weaknesses.
material for a given
purpose

1
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

MULTIPLE CHOICE SECTION


1. Sociology is defined as the __________.

a. systematic study of human society and social interaction


b. methodological analysis of groups and individuals
c. scientific analysis of premodern people
d. academic discipline that examines individual human behavior

Answer: a Page: 4 LO: 4

2. A __________ is a large social grouping that shares the same geographical territory and
is subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations.

a. culture
b. society
c. nation
d. country

Answer: b Page: 4 LO: 4

3. __________ defines a relationship in which the lives of all people are intertwined closely
and any one nation's problems are part of a larger global problem.

a. Societal cohesiveness
b. Universal cooperation
c. Global interdependence
d. International interlock

Answer: c Page: 4 LO: 10

4. Environmental problems are an example of __________. People throughout the world


share the same biosphere. When environmental degradation, such as removing natural
resources or polluting the air and water, takes place in one region, it may have an
adverse effect on people elsewhere.

a. international interlock
b. universal cooperation
c. societal cohesiveness
d. global interdependence

Answer: d Page: 4 LO: 10


5. __________are problems that affect large numbers of people and often require
solutions at the societal level.

a. Non-personal troubles
b. Non-private difficulties
c. Public issues
d. Societal woes

Answer: c Page: 5 LO: 7

2
Chapter 1

6. Which statement concerning suicide is false?

a. White Americans have a higher rate of suicide than African Americans.


b. One of the warning signs of suicide is if the person talks about it.
c. People who commit suicide often fail to see the bright side of life.
d. Children can learn how to harm themselves from the mass media.

Answer: a Page: 6 LO: 4

7. Which statement concerning suicide is true?

a. The rate of suicide is higher for older men than older women.
b. Most people who attempt suicide remain suicidal throughout life.
c. Older women have a lower rate of attempted suicide as compared with
older males.
d. There is no evidence that children under the age of 10 have taken their
own lives.

Answer: c Page: 6 LO: 4

8. On average, a suicide occurs in the U.S. approximately every ___ minutes.

a. 5
b. 10
c. 16
d. 23

Answer: c Page: 6 LO: 4

9. What is the leading cause of death for teenagers and young adults?

a. AIDS
b. pneumonia
c. heart disease
d. suicide

Answer: d Page: 6 LO: 4

10. Which group below has the highest rate of suicide?

a. white males
b. white females
c. black males
d. black females

Answer: b Page: 6 LO: 4

11. In 2004, the average suicide rate in the U.S. was ____ per 100,000 population.

a. 3
b. 11
c. 18
d. 25

Answer: b Page: 6 LO: 4

3
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

12. According to sociologist C. Wright Mills, the ability to see the relationship between
individual experiences and the larger society is referred to as the __________.

a. conflict perception
b. sociological imagination
c. reality perception
d. symbolic interaction approach

Answer: b Page: 5 LO: 7

13. Becky is taking a course at a university in Bombay, India as a part of a student


exchange program. She is having difficulty accepting many of the local customs including
the status of cows, the caste system, and the apparent lack of respect women receive.
Becky is making a sincere effort, however, to understand the Indian customs and to
place this behavior within a broader social context. In view of this, Becky is engaging the
__________.

a. self-fulfilling prophecy
b. bystander paradigm
c. sociological imagination
d. reality principle

Answer: c Page: 5 LO: 7

14. __________ are private problems that affect individuals and the networks of people with
which they associate regularly; these problems must be solved by individuals within their
immediate social setting.

a. Personal troubles
b. Public issues
c. Non-public issues
d. Psychological difficulties

Answer: a Page: 5 LO: 7

15. One person being unemployed may be an example of __________, whereas widespread
unemployment as a result of economic changes such as plant closings is an example of
__________.

a. non-public issues; psychological difficulties


b. personal troubles; public issues
c. psychological difficulties; non-public issues
d. public issues; personal troubles

Answer: b Page: 5 LO: 7

16. The worlds __________ countries are nations with highly industrialized economies;
technologically advanced industrial, administrative, and service occupations; and
relatively high levels of national and personal income.

a. high-income
b. middle-income
c. low-income
d. superior-income

Answer: a Page: 8 LO: 10

4
Chapter 1

17. Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan are classified as __________.

a. middle-income countries
b. superior-income countries
c. high-income countries
d. low-income countries

Answer: c Page: 8 LO: 10

18. The worlds __________ countries are nations with industrializing economies, particularly
in urban areas, and reasonable levels of national and personal income.

a. high-income
b. middle-income
c. low-income
d. subordinate-income

Answer: b Page: 8 LO: 10

19. The worlds __________ countries are primarily agrarian nations with little
industrialization and impoverished levels of national and personal income.

a. high-income
b. middle-income
c. subordinate-income
d. low-income

Answer: d Page: 8 LO: 10

20. __________ is a term used by many people to specify groups of people distinguished by
physical characteristics such as skin color.

a. Ethnicity
b. Creed
c. Race
d. Color line

Answer: c Page: 9 LO: 7

21. __________ refers to the cultural heritage or identity of a group and is based on factors
such as language or country of origin.

a. Ethnicity
b. Creed
c. Race
d. Genealogy

Answer: a Page: 9 LO: 7

5
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

22. __________ is the relative location of a person or group within the larger society, based
on wealth, power, prestige, or other valued resources.

a. Caste
b. Class
c. Economic position
d. Social location

Answer: b Page: 9 LO: 7

23. __________ refers to the biological and anatomical differences between females
and males.

a. Sex
b. Biology
c. Gender
d. Sociobiology

Answer: a Page: 9 LO: 7

24. __________ refers to the meanings, beliefs, and practices associated with sex
differences, referred to as femininity and masculinity.

a. Sex
b. Biology
c. Gender
d. Sociobiology

Answer: c Page: 9 LO: 7

25. Barbara is a female, which refers to her __________, and she acts very feminine, which
is her __________.

a. gender; sex
b. biology; sociobiology
c. sex; gender
d. sociobiology; biology

Answer: c Page: 9 LO: 7

26. __________ is the process by which societies are transformed from dependence
on agriculture and handmade products to an emphasis on manufacturing and
related industries.

a. Ruralization
b. Urbanization
c. Suburbanization
d. Industrialization

Answer: d Page: 9 LO: 10

6
Chapter 1

27. During the __________, massive economic, technological, and social changes occurred
as machine technology and the factory system shifted the economic base of nations from
agriculture to manufacturing.

a. Ruralization Revolution
b. Industrial Revolution
c. Suburbanization Revolution
d. Urbanization Revolution

Answer: b Page: 9 LO: 10

28. __________ is the process by which an increasing proportion of a population lives in


cities rather than in rural areas.

a. Urbanization
b. Suburbanization
c. Industrialization
d. Ruralization

Answer: a Page: 9 LO: 10

29. French philosopher Auguste Comtes philosophy became known as __________, a belief
that the world can best be understood through scientific inquiry.

a. absolutism
b. positivism
c. functionalism
d. specific methodology

Answer: b Page: 11 LO: 1

30. British sociologist __________ translated and condensed Comtes work and was noted
for her study of social customs in Great Britain and the United States.

a. Harriet Nelson
b. Jane Addams
c. Harriet Martineau
d. Sarah Spencer

Answer: c Page: 11 LO: 1

31. Based on British social theorist Herbert Spencers theory, __________ is the belief that
those species of animals, including human beings, best adapted to their environment
survive and prosper, whereas those poorly adapted die out.

a. social Darwinism
b. social eugenics
c. social statics
d. social facts

Answer: a Page: 12 LO: 1

7
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

32. According to French sociologist Emile Durkheim, __________ are patterned ways of
acting, thinking, and feeling that exist outside any one individual but that exert social
control over each person.

a. group behaviors
b. social facts
c. essential characteristics
d. sociological generalizations

Answer: b Page: 12 LO: 1

33. French sociologist Emile Durkheim observed that rapid social change and a more
specialized division of labor produce strain in society; these strains lead to a
breakdown in traditional organization, values, and authority and to a dramatic increase
in __________.

a. anomie
b. social disorganization
c. social solidarity
d. cultural conflict

Answer: a Page: 13 LO: 1

34. French sociologist Emile Durkheim referred to __________ as a condition in which social
control becomes ineffective as a result of the loss of shared values and a sense of
purpose in society.

a. social disorganization
b. social dysfunctionalism
c. cultural breakdown
d. anomie

Answer: d Page: 13 LO: 1

35. In the Marxian framework, the __________ comprises those who own and control the
means of production.

a. bourgeoisie class
b. upper-tier class
c. proletariat class
d. laissez-faire class

Answer: a Page: 14 LO: 11

36. The __________ are the tools, land, factories, and money for investment that form the
economic basis of a society.

a. means of production
b. instruments of capitalism
c. trappings of the bourgeoisie
d. factory system

Answer: a Page: 14 LO: 11

8
Chapter 1

37. From the Marxian viewpoint, the __________ is composed of those who must sell their
labor because they have no other means to earn a livelihood.

a. bourgeoisie class
b. lower-tier class
c. proletariat class
d. laissez-faire class

Answer: c Page: 14 LO: 11

38. Tom works on the assembly line at the local Ford automobile factory. Based on the
Marxian framework, Tom would be considered a member of the __________ because he
does not own the means of production.

a. laissez-faire class
b. lower-tier class
c. bourgeoisie class
d. proletariat class

Answer: d Page: 14 LO: 11

39. According to German economist and philosopher Karl Marx, __________ is a feeling of
powerlessness and estrangement from other people and from oneself.

a. class conflict
b. alienation
c. anomie
d. the bourgeoisie syndrome

Answer: b Page: 14 LO: 11

40. Unlike many early analysts, who believed that values could not be separated from the
research process, German social scientist __________ emphasized that sociology
should be value freeresearch should be conducted in a scientific manner and should
exclude the researchers personal values and economic interests.

a. Emile Durkheim
b. Max Weber
c. Karl Marx
d. Herbert Spencer

Answer: b Page: 15 LO: 11

41. German social scientist Max Weber stressed that sociologists should employ
__________ (understanding or insight) to gain the ability to see the world as others
see it.

a. verstehen
b. positivism
c. social facts
d. social dynamics

Answer: a Page: 15 LO: 11

9
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

42. German sociologist Georg Simmel analyzed how social interactions vary depending on
the __________. He concluded that interaction patterns differed between a dyad and a
triad.

a. sex of the social group


b. size of the social group
c. social class of the social group
d. race of the social group

Answer: b Page: 16 LO: 11

43. Sociologist W.E.B. Du Bois observed that a dual heritage creates conflict for people of
color: an identity conflict of being black and American. Du Bois referred to this duality
as __________.

a. double-consciousness
b. the dual-labor market
c. the double bind
d. functional conflict

Answer: a Page: 17 LO: 2

44. A __________ is defined as a set of logically interrelated statements that attempts to


describe, explain, and (occasionally) predict social events.

a. hypothesis
b. law
c. theory
d. generalization

Answer: c Page: 17 LO: 12

45. __________ perspectives are based on the assumption that society is a stable,
orderly system.

a. Functionalist
b. Conflict
c. Interactionist
d. Developmental

Answer: a Page: 18 LO: 12

46. Based on the __________ perspective, a society is composed of interrelated parts, each
of which (ideally) contributes to the overall stability of the society.

a. conflict
b. postmodern
c. functionalist
d. symbolic interactionist

Answer: c Page: 18 LO: 12

10
Chapter 1

47. The __________ states that societies develop social structures, or institutions that persist
because they play a part in helping society survive. These institutions include the family,
education, government, religion, and the economy.

a. postmodern theorist
b. symbolic interactionist
c. conflict theorist
d. functionalist

Answer: d Page: 18 LO: 12

48. From a functionalist perspective, the husband/father performs the __________ tasks,
which involve leadership and decision-making responsibilities in the home and
employment outside the home to support the family.

a. expressive
b. instrumental
c. contradictory
d. interdependent

Answer: b Page: 18 LO: 12

49. From a functionalist perspective, the wife/mother is responsible for the __________
tasks, including housework, caring for the children, and providing emotional support for
the entire family.

a. expressive
b. instrumental
c. compatible
d. independent

Answer: a Page: 18 LO: 12

50. According to sociologist Robert K. Merton, __________ are intended and/or overtly
recognized by the participants in a social unit.

a. dysfunctions
b. latent functions
c. prerequisite functions
d. manifest functions

Answer: d Page: 19 LO: 12

51. According to sociologist Robert K. Merton, __________ are unintended functions that are
hidden and remain unacknowledged by participants.

a. dysfunctions
b. latent functions
c. prerequisite functions
d. manifest functions

Answer: b Page: 19 LO: 12

11
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

52. According to sociologist Robert K. Merton, __________ are the undesirable


consequences of any element of a society.

a. dysfunctions
b. latent functions
c. prerequisite functions
d. manifest functions

Answer: a Page: 19 LO: 12

53. When students go away to college they often make lifelong friends and may even find
their spouse. According to Robert Merton, this is a _____ function of education.
a. manifest
b. latent
c. dysfunction
d. prerequisite

Answer: a Page: 19 LO: 12

54. Jill attends college in order to study accounting so that she can work as a CPA. In
Mertons terminology, college is serving a _____ function.

a. manifest
b. latent
c. dysfunction
d. prerequisite

Answer: a Page: 19 LO: 12

55. A __________ of education in the United States is the perpetuation of gender, racial, and
class inequalities, which may threaten the capacity of a society to adapt and survive.

a. manifest function
b. dysfunction
c. latent function
d. prerequisite function

Answer: b Page: 19 LO: 12

56. According to the __________ perspective, groups in society are engaged in a continuous
power struggle for control of scarce resources.

a. functionalist
b. interactionist
c. conflict
d. developmental

Answer: c Page: 20 LO: 12

12
Chapter 1

57. When analyzing the tobacco industry, which theoretical perspective would most likely look
at tobacco interests versus health care interests?

a. functionalist
b. interactionist
c. conflict
d. developmental

Answer: c Page: 20 LO: 12

58. C. Wright Mills used the term "__________" in referring to a small clique composed of the
top corporate, political, and military officials.

a. top of the heap


b. bureaucracy
c. niche
d. power elite

Answer: d Page: 20 LO: 12

59. According to feminist theorists, we live in a(n) __________, a system in which men
dominate women and in which things that are considered to be male or masculine are
more highly valued than those considered to be female or feminine.

a. patriarchy
b. autarchy
c. matriarchy
d. monarchy

Answer: a Page: 20 LO: 12

60. A __________ analysis examines whole societies, large-scale social structures, and
social systems.

a. macrolevel
b. metalevel
c. microlevel
d. mesolevel

Answer: a Page: 21 LO: 12

61. A __________ analysis focuses on small groups rather than large-scale social structures.

a. macrolevel
b. mesolevel
c. microlevel
d. metalevel

Answer: c Page: 22 LO: 12

13
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

62. According to the __________ perspective, society is the sum of the interactions of
individuals and groups.

a. functionalist
b. conflict
c. symbolic interactionist
d. postmodern

Answer: c Page: 22 LO: 12

63. A __________ is anything that meaningfully represents something else and includes
signs, gestures, written language, and shared values.

a. symbol
b. sociological construct
c. norm
d. status

Answer: a Page: 22 LO: 12

64. A physician wears a white lab coat and a stethoscope. The patient sees these as
representing knowledge and authority. The coat and stethoscope are

a. signals that defines the relationships between individuals.


b. symbols used to define a relationship between individuals.
c. symbols of power inequality among the individuals.
d. signs that this is a public interaction among individuals.

Answer: b Page: 22 LO: 12

65. From the symbolic interactionist perspective, each person's interpretation or definition of
a given situation becomes a(n) __________ from that person's viewpoint.

a. objective phenomenon
b. subjective reality
c. imagination
d. fictitious thought

Answer: b Page: 22 LO: 12

66. According to the __________ perspective, existing theories have been unsuccessful in
explaining social life in contemporary societies that are characterized by
postindustrialization, consumerism, and global communications.

a. functionalist
b. conflict
c. symbolic interactionist
d. postmodern

Answer: d Page: 23 LO: 12

14
Chapter 1

67. In relation to the study of education in America, __________ would look at the role the
schools play in maintaining the social system as a whole; how education provides the
young with skills they need later in life; and how it transmits cultural values from one
generation to the next.

a. symbolic interactionists
b. postmodern theorists
c. functionalists
d. conflict theorists

Answer: c Page: 22 LO: 12

68. In relation to the study of education in America, __________ would emphasize the daily
activities within the schools and the various forms of communication between teachers
and students. They would also examine the influence of peer groups and look at the
reaction when school rules are broken or followed.

a. conflict theorists
b. symbolic interactionists
c. postmodern theorists
d. functionalists

Answer: b Page: 22 LO: 12

69. In relation to the study of homelessness in American society, __________ would look at
changing relationships in the family and economic conditions which causes homelessness
among people who are unable to find jobs and do not have a family support system to fall
back on.

a. symbolic interactionists
b. conflict theorists
c. postmodern theorists
d. functionalists

Answer: d Page: 22 LO: 12

70. In relation to the study of homelessness in American society, __________ would place
emphasis on the struggle between social classes, especially how the policies of the
wealthy push certain groups into unemployment and homelessness, and would examine
welfare program reform.

a. conflict theorists
b. functionalists
c. symbolic interactionists
d. postmodern theorists

Answer: a Page: 22 LO: 12

15
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

71. In relation to the study of homelessness in American society, __________ would focus on
homeless peoples communications (both verbal and non-verbal) and analyze what
homeless people do when they are in shelters and on the streets

a. functionalists
b. conflict theorists
c. symbolic interactionists
d. postmodern theorists

Answer: c Page: 23 LO: 12

72. In relation to the sociology of sports in the United States, __________ would begin by
pointing out that sports are closely linked to social inequality. For example, some sports
(including tennis, swimming, golf, sailing, and skiing) are expensive, so participation is
largely limited to the wealthy. Also throughout history, sports have been oriented primarily
toward males.

a. symbolic interactionists
b. functionalists
c. conflict theorists
d. postmodern theorists

Answer: c Page: 20 LO: 12

73. In relation to the sociology of sports in the United States, __________ would describe a
sporting event as a complex drama of face-to-face activities. Play is guided by the players
assigned positions and rules of the game. Also, players are spontaneous and
unpredictable.

a. conflict theorists
b. symbolic interactionists
c. postmodern theorists
d. functionalists

Answer: b Page: 21 LO: 12

74. Sociologists obtain their knowledge of human behavior through __________, which is the
process of systematically collecting information for the purpose of testing an existing
theory or generating a new one.

a. common sense ideas


b. research
c. myths
d. scientific laws

Answer: b Page: 24 LO: 3

75. With __________ research, the goal is scientific objectivity, and the focus is on data that
can be measured numerically.

a. qualitative
b. observational
c. quantitative
d. explanatory

Answer: c Page: 24 LO: 13

16
Chapter 1

76. Researchers in one study examined the effects of church membership, divorce, and
migration on suicide rates in the United States and concluded that suicide rates are
typically higher where divorce and migration rates are higher and church membership is
lower. This is an example of __________.

a. observational research
b. quantitative research
c. explanatory research
d. qualitative research

Answer: b Page: 24 LO: 12

77. With __________ research, interpretative description (words) rather than statistics
(numbers) are used to analyze underlying meanings and patterns of social relationships.

a. qualitative
b. observational
c. quantitative
d. explanatory

Answer: a Page: 25 LO: 13

78. Researchers in one study systematically analyzed the contents of the notes of suicide
victims to determine recurring themes, such as feeling of despair or failure. They hoped
to determine if any patterns could be found that would help in understanding why people
might kill themselves. This is an example of __________.

a. explanatory research
b. qualitative research
c. observational research
d. quantitative research

Answer: b Page: 25 LO: 13

79. Sociologists conducting research may formulate a(n) __________, which is a statement
of the relationship between two or more variables.

a. theory
b. hypothesis
c. variable
d. operational definition

Answer: b Page: 28 LO: 3

80. Age is a factor that can change and varies from person to person. Age represents a

a. variable
b. theory
c. hypothesis
d. principle

Answer: a Page: 28 LO: 3

17
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

81. In a hypothesis, the researcher considers the __________ to be the cause of the
relationship.

a. independent variable
b. dependent variable
c. universal variable
d. control variable

Answer: a Page: 28 LO: 3

82. In a hypothesis, the researcher presumes the __________ to be caused by another


variable.

a. independent variable
b. dependent variable
c. universal variable
d. control variable

Answer: b Page: 28 LO: 3

83. David has developed the hypothesis that the stress felt by unemployed men increases
the probability of spousal abuse. Stress would be considered the __________ variable
and spousal abuse would be considered the __________ variable.

a. dependent; independent
b. universal; control
c. independent; dependent
d. control; universal

Answer: c Page: 28 LO: 3

84. __________ is the extent to which a study or research instrument accurately measures
what it is supposed to measure.

a. Validity
b. Reliability
c. Predictability
d. Variability

Answer: a Page: 29 LO: 3

85. __________ is the extent to which a study or research instrument yields consistent
results when applied to different individuals at one time or to the same individuals over
time.

a. Validity
b. Reliability
c. Predictability
d. Variability

Answer: b Page: 29 LO: 3

18
Chapter 1

86. John develops a scale to assess job satisfaction among industrial workers. He is
especially concerned that the workers in his study will interpret the scale items on
his questionnaire in an inconsistent fashion. Johns concern reflects the issue
of __________.

a. the representativeness of his sample


b. the accuracy of his hypothesis
c. the validity of his operational definition
d. the reliability of his measure

Answer: d Page: 29 LO: 3

87. __________ are specific strategies or techniques for systematically conducting research.

a. Investigative methods
b. Research methods
c. Theoretical methods
d. Experimental methods

Answer: b Page: 32 LO: 3

88. A(n) __________ is a poll in which the researcher gathers facts or attempts to determine
the relationships among facts.

a. survey
b. experiment
c. case study
d. content analysis

Answer: a Page: 32 LO: 8

89. __________ are people who provide data for analysis through interviews or
questionnaires.

a. Observers
b. Respondents
c. Polls
d. Control groups

Answer: b Page: 33 LO: 8

90. A(n) __________ is a printed research instrument containing a series of items to which
subjects respond.
a. questionnaire
b. interview
c. telephone survey
d. computer-assisted interview

Answer: a Page: 34 LO: 14

19
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

91. In __________, researchers use existing material and analyze data that were originally
collected by others.

a. primary analysis
b. tertiary analysis
c. secondary analysis
d. manifest analysis

Answer: c Page: 34 LO: 14

92. Joyce wants to do a study of domestic abuse but lacks the time and money to
gather her own data. Consequently, she analyzes data previously gathered by the
National Opinion Research Center that is related to this topic. In this case, Joyce is
conducting __________.

a. content analysis
b. secondary analysis
c. survey
d. participant observation

Answer: b Page: 34 LO: 14

93. __________ is the systematic examination of cultural artifacts or various forms of


communication to extract thematic data and draw conclusions about social life.

a. Content analysis
b. Content standardization
c. Content validity
d. Content reliability

Answer: a Page: 34 LO: 14

94. __________is the study of social life in its natural setting: observing and interviewing
people where they live, work, and play.

a. The survey
b. Secondary analysis
c. Field research
d. The experiment

Answer: c Page: 34 LO: 14

95. __________ refers to the process of collecting data while being part of the activities of
the group that the researcher is studying.
a. The experiment
b. Survey research
c. Participant observation
d. Secondary analysis

Answer: c Page: 35 LO: 14

20
Chapter 1

96. Lucy has volunteered at the local crisis center. While she is performing as a volunteer,
she is given permission to gather data on the number of women who report being
abused, and the number of women who later participate in counseling. Lucy is using
__________ as a method of gathering data.

a. representative sampling
b. secondary analysis
c. content analysis
d. participant observation

Answer: d Page: 35 LO: 14

97. A(n) __________ is a detailed study of the life and activities of a group of people by
researchers who may live with that group over a period of years.

a. correlational study
b. ethnography
c. experiment
d. content analysis

Answer: b Page: 35 LO: 14

98. A(n) __________ is a carefully designed situation in which the researcher studies the
impact of certain variables on subjects attitudes or behavior.

a. case study
b. correlational study
c. experiment
d. participant observation

Answer: c Page: 36 LO: 14

99. In an experiment, the __________ contains the subjects who are exposed to an
independent variable to study its effect on them.

a. experimental group
b. dependent group
c. control group
d. independent group

Answer: a Page: 36 LO: 14

100. In an experiment, the __________ contains the subjects who are not exposed to the
independent variable.

a. experimental group
b. independent group
c. dependent group
d. control group

Answer: d Page: 36 LO: 14

21
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

TRUE-FALSE SECTION
1. Sociology is a systematic study because sociologists apply both theoretical perspectives
and research methods to examinations of social behavior.

Answer: True Page: 4 LO: 4

2. Among the young, suicide accounts for more deaths than cancer, heart disease, and
AIDS combined.

Answer: True Page: 6 LO: 4

3. One of the great myths about suicide is that people who commit suicide will talk about
doing so.

Answer: False Page: 6 LO: 4

Rejoinder: It is not a myth. It is the case that people will often talk about taking their
lives.

4. Among males, white Americans have a higher suicide rate than blacks. For females, the
rate of suicide is higher for black females than white females.

Answer: False Page: 6 LO: 4

Rejoinder: Black females actually have the lowest rate when looking at race and gender.

5. The sociological imagination helps us place personal troubles, such as losing ones job or
attempting suicide, into a larger social context, where we can distinguish whether and
how personal troubles may be related to public issues.

Answer: True Page: 5 LO: 4

6. Middle-income countries are nations with highly industrialized economies, technologically


advanced industrial, administrative, and service occupations; and relatively high levels of
national and personal income.

Answer: False Page: 6 LO: 10

Rejoinder: This describes high-income countries. Middle-income countries are nations


with industrializing economies, particularly in urban areas, and moderate levels of
national and personal income.

7. Urbanization is the process by which societies are transformed from dependence on


agriculture and handmade products to an emphasis on manufacturing and related
industries.

Answer: False Page: 9 LO: 10

Rejoinder: This is the definition of Industrialization; Urbanization is the process by which


an increasing proportion of a population lives in cities rather than in rural areas.

8. French philosopher Auguste Comte coined the term sociology to describe a new science
that would engage in the study of society.

Answer: True Page: 10 LO: 1

22
Chapter 1

9. Sociologist Max Weber believed that societies developed through a process of struggle
(for existence) and fitness (for survival), which he referred to as the survival of the
fittest.

Answer: False Page: 12 LO: 1

Rejoinder: This was Herbert Spencers view of society, known as social Darwinism.

10. Sociologist Emile Durkheim observed that rapid social change and a more specialized
division of labor produce strains in society. These strains lead to a breakdown in
traditional organization, values, and authority and to a dramatic increase in anomie.

Answer: True Page: 13 LO: 1

11. In the Marxian framework, the working class, or bourgeoisie, is composed of those who
must sell their labor because they have no other means to earn a livelihood.

Answer: False Page: 15 LO: 11

Rejoinder: This is the definition of the proletariat; the bourgeoisie or capitalist class
comprises those who own and control the means of production.

12. Sociologist Max Weber emphasized that sociology should be value freeresearch
should be conducted in a scientific manner and should exclude the researchers personal
values and economic interests.

Answer: True Page: 13 LO: 11

13. The first department of sociology in the United States was established at the University of
Chicago, where the faculty was instrumental in starting the American Sociological Society
(now known as the American Sociological Association).

Answer: True Page: 16 LO: 2

14. Jane Addams is noted for both founding Hull House, a settlement house in Chicago, and
winning the Nobel Prize.

Answer: True Page: 16 LO: 2

15. Sociologist George Herbert Mead was one of the first scholars to note that a dual
heritage creates conflict for people of color. He called this duality double consciousness
the identity conflict of being black and American.

Answer: False Page: 17 LO: 2

Rejoinder: This was based on W.E.B. Du Bois research.

16. According to the functionalist perspective, societies develop social structures (institutions)
that persist because they play a part in helping society survive. These institutions include
the family, education, government, religion, and the economy.

Answer: True Page: 18 LO: 12

23
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

17. Sociologist Talcott Parsons suggested that a division of labor between husband and wife
is essential for family stability and social order. The wife/mother is responsible for the
instrumental tasks, including housework, caring for the children, and providing emotional
support for the entire family.

Answer: False Page: 18 LO: 12

Rejoinder: This is the correct description of expressive tasks performed by the


wife/mother; the husband/father performs the instrumental tasks, which involve
leadership and decision-making responsibilities in the home and employment outside the
home to support the family.

18. Sociologist Robert K. Merton stated that manifest functions are intended and/or overtly
recognized by the participants in a social unit. For example, a manifest function of
education is the transmission of knowledge and skills from one generation to the next.

Answer: True Page: 19 LO: 12

19. C. Wright Mills believed that the most important decisions in the United States are made
largely behind the scenes by the power superiorsa small clique composed of the top
corporate, political, and military officials.

Answer: False Page: 20 LO: 7

Rejoinder: The correct term is power elite.

20. According to feminist theorists, we live in a patriarchy, which is a system in which men
dominate women and in which things considered to be male or masculine are more
highly valued than those considered to be female or feminine.

Answer: True Page: 20 LO: 12

24
Chapter 1

21. The conflict and functionalist perspectives focus primarily on microlevel (focuses on small
groups) analysis; whereas, the symbolic interactionist approaches are based on a
macrolevel (examines whole societies, large-scale social structures, and social systems)
analysis.

Answer: False Page: 21 LO: 12

Rejoinder: Conflict and functionalist perspectives focus on macrolevel analysis and


symbolic interactionist perspective is based on microlevel analysis.

22. From a symbolic interactionist point of view, a suicide attempt may be a way of moving
toward other people in the form of a cry for help and personal acceptance, rather than a
move toward death.

Answer: True Page: 23 LO: 12

23. With quantitative research, the goal is scientific objectivity, and typically emphasizes
complex statistical techniques. For example, most sociological studies on suicide have
compared rates of suicide with almost every conceivable variable, including age, sex,
race/ethnicity, and education.

Answer: True Page: 24 LO: 13

24. Reliability is the extent to which a study or research instrument accurately measures what
it is supposed to measure.

Answer: False Page: 29 LO: 8

Rejoinder: This is the definition for validity; reliability is the extent to which a study or
research instrument yields consistent results.

25. After collecting and analyzing the data, your first step in drawing conclusions is to return to
your hypothesis or research objective to clarify how the data relate both to the hypothesis
and to the larger issues being addressed.

Answer: True Page: 24 LO: 3

SHORT RESPONSE SECTION


1. Define sociology and explain how it helps us to better understand our social world and
ourselves.

Answer: Sociology is the systematic study of human society and social interaction.
Sociologists study human societies and their social interactions to develop theories of how
human behavior is shaped by group life and how, in turn, group life is affected by
individuals. Sociology helps us gain a better understanding of ourselves and our social
world. It enables us to see how behavior is largely shaped by the groups to which we
belong and the society in which we live. Most of us take our social world for granted and
view our lives in very personal terms. Because of our cultures emphasis on individualism,
we often do not consider the complex connections between our own lives and the larger,
recurring patterns of the society and world in which we live. Sociology helps us look
beyond our personal experiences and gain insights into society and the larger world order.
A society is a large social grouping that shares the same geographical territory and is

33
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations. Examining the
world order helps us understand that each of us is affected by global interdependence a
relationship in which the lives of all people are intertwined closely and any one nations
problems are part of a larger global problem. Individuals can make use of sociology on a
more personal level. Sociology enables us to move beyond established ways of thinking,
thus allowing us to gain new insights into ourselves and to develop a greater awareness of
the connection between our own world and that of other people. Sociology provides new
ways of approaching problems and making decisions in everyday life. Sociology promotes
understanding and tolerance by enabling each of us to look beyond our personal
experiences.

Page: 4 LO: 4

2. Interpret what sociologist C. Wright Mills meant by the sociological imagination.

Answer: Mills described sociological reasoning as the sociological imagination the


ability to see the relationship between individual experiences and the larger society. This
awareness enables us to understand the link between our personal experiences and the
social contexts in which they occur. The sociological imagination helps us distinguish
between personal troubles and social (or public) issues. Personal troubles are private
problems that affect individuals and the networks of people with which they associate
regularly. As a result, these problems must be solved by individuals within their immediate
social setting. For example, one person being unemployed or attempting suicide could be
identified as a personal trouble. Whereas, social (or public) issues are problems that affect
large numbers of people and often require solutions at the societal level. For example,
widespread unemployment as a result of economic changes such as plant closings could
be identified as a social (or public) issue.

Page: 5 LO: 7

3. Define industrialization and urbanization, and explain the role of each in furthering
sociological thought.

Answer: Industrialization is the process by which societies are transformed from


dependence on agriculture and handmade products to an emphasis on manufacturing and
related industries. By the mid-nineteenth century, industrialization was well under way in
the United States. Massive economic, technological, and social changes occurred as
machine technology and the factory system shifted the economic base from agriculture to
manufacturing. A new social class of industrialists emerged in textiles, iron smelting, and
related industries. Many people who had labored on the land were forced to leave their
tightly knit rural communities and sacrifice well-defined social relationships to seek
employment as factory workers in the emerging cities, which became the centers of
industrial work. Urbanization accompanied modernization and the rapid process of
industrialization. Urbanization is the process by which an increasing proportion of a
population lives in cities rather than in rural areas. The development of the factory system
led to a rapid increase in both the number of cities and the size of the population. People
from very diverse backgrounds worked together in the same factory. At the same time,
many people shifted from being producers to being consumers. For example, families
living in the cities had to buy food with their new wages because they could no longer
grow their own crops to consume or to barter for other resources. Similarly, people had to
pay rent for their lodging because they could no longer exchange their services for shelter.
These living and working conditions led to the development of new social problems:
inadequate housing, crowding, unsanitary conditions, poverty, pollution, and crime.
Wages were so low that entire familiesincluding very young childrenwere forced to
work, often under hazardous conditions and with no job security. As these conditions
became more visible, a new breed of social thinkers turned its attention to trying to
understand why and how society was changing.

34
Chapter 1

Page: 8 LO: 10

4. Briefly summarize at least three of Auguste Comtes contributions to early sociology.

Answer: French philosopher Auguste Comte coined the term sociology to describe a
new science that would engage in the study of society. Comtes theory stated that
societies contain social statics (forces for social order and stability) and social dynamics
(forces for conflict and change). Comtes philosophy became known as positivisma
belief that the world can best be understood through scientific inquiry. He believed that
objective, bias-free knowledge was attainable only through the use of science rather than
religion. However, scientific knowledge was relative knowledge, not absolute and final.
Comtes positivism had two dimensions: (1) methodologicalthe application of scientific
knowledge to both physical and social phenomenaand (2) social and politicalthe use
of such knowledge to predict the likely results of different policies so that the best one
could be chosen.

Page: 10 LO: 1

5. Discuss Herbert Spencers Survival of the Fittest theory. What are the criticisms of his
approach?

Answer: British social theorist Herbert Spencers major contribution to sociology was an
evolutionary perspective on social order and social change. According to Spencers
Theory of General Evolution, society has various interdependent parts (such as the family,
the economy, and the government) that work to ensure the stability and survival of the
entire society. Spencer believed that societies developed through a process of struggle
(for existence) and fitness (for survival), which he referred to as the survival of the
fittest. Spencers view of society is known as social Darwinismthe belief that those
species of animals, including human beings, best adapted to their environment survive
and prosper, whereas those poorly adapted die out. Spencer equated this process of
natural selection with progress, because only the fittest members of society would
survive the competition, and the unfit would be filtered out of society. Critics say that he
looked at society as the same as a biological system. Also, his idea of survival of the fittest
can be used to justify different kinds of inequalities.

Page: 11 LO: 1

6. Discuss what Emile Durkheim meant by the concepts of social facts and anomie.

Answer: French sociologist Emile Durkheim stressed that people are the products of their
social environment and that behavior can not be fully understood in terms of individual
biological and psychological traits. Durkheim set forth the idea that societies are built on
social facts. Social facts are patterned ways of acting, thinking, and feeling that exist
outside any one individual but that exert social control over each person. He believed that
social facts must be explained by other social factsby reference to the social structure
rather than to individual attributes. Durkheims recurring question was: How do societies
manage to hold together? He concluded that preindustrial societies were held together by
strong traditions and by members shared moral beliefs and values. As societies
industrialized, more specialized economic activity became the basis of the social bond
because people became interdependent on one another. Durkheim observed that rapid
social change and a more specialized division of labor produce strains in society. These
strains lead to a breakdown in traditional organization, values, and authority and to a
dramatic increase in anomiea condition in which social control becomes ineffective as a
result of the loss of shared values and of a sense of purpose in society.

Pages: 12 LO: 1

35
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

7. Describe the main points of Karl Marxs theory of class conflict.

Answer: German economist and philosopher Karl Marx stressed that history is a
continuous clash between conflicting ideas and forces. He believed that conflict
especially class conflictis necessary in order to produce social change and a better
society. Class conflict is the struggle between the capitalist class and the working class.
The capitalist class, or bourgeoisie, comprises those who own and control the means of
production the tools, land, factories, and money for investment that form the economic
basis of a society. The working class, or proletariat, is composed of those who must sell
their labor because they have no other means to earn a livelihood. The capitalist class
controls and exploits the masses of struggling workers by paying less than the value of
their labor. This exploitation results in workers alienationa feeling of powerlessness and
estrangement from other people and from themselves. Marx predicted that the working
class would become aware of its exploitation, overthrow the capitalists, and establish a
free and classless society.

Page: 12 LO: 11

8. State the major assumptions of the functionalist perspectives.

Answer: Functionalist perspectives are based on the assumption that society is a stable,
orderly system. This stable system is characterized by societal consensus, whereby the
majority of members share a common set of values, beliefs, and behavioral expectations.
A society is composed of interrelated parts, each of which serves a function and (ideally)
contributes to the overall stability of the society. Societies develop social structures, or
institutions that persist because they play a part in helping society survive. These
institutions include the family, education, government, religion, and the economy. If
anything adverse happens to one of these institutions or parts, all other parts are affected,
and the system no longer functions properly.

Page: 17 LO: 12

9. State the major assumptions of the conflict perspectives.

Answer: According to the conflict perspectives, groups in society are engaged in a


continuous power struggle for control of scarce resources. Conflict may take the form of
politics, litigation, negotiations, or family discussions about financial matters. Today,
advocates of the conflict perspective view social life as a continuous power struggle
among competing social groups. The conflict perspective encompasses several branches:
(1) the neo-Marxist approach, which views struggle between the classes as inevitable and
as a prime source of social change; (2) the branch that focuses on racial-ethnic
inequalities and the continued exploitation of members of some racial-ethnic groups; and
(3) the feminist approach, which focuses on gender issues.

Pages: 19 LO: 12

10. State the major assumptions of the symbolic interactionist perspective.

Answer: According to symbolic interactionist perspectives, society is the sum of the


interactions of individuals and groups. Theorists using this perspective focus on the
process of interactiondefined as immediate, reciprocally oriented communication
between two or more peopleand the part that symbols play in giving meaning to human
communication. A symbol is anything that meaningfully represents something else.
Symbolic interaction occurs when people communicate through the use of symbols.
Symbolic communication occurs in a variety of forms, including facial gestures, posture,
tone of voice, and other symbolic gestures (such as a handshake or a clenched fist).

36
Chapter 1

Symbols are instrumental in helping people derive meanings from social situations. In
social encounters, each persons interpretation or definition of a given situation becomes a
subjective reality from that persons viewpoints. Symbolic interactionists attempt to study
how people make sense of their life situations and the way they go about their activities, in
conjunction with others, on a day-to-day basis. According to the postmodern perspectives,
existing theories have been unsuccessful in explaining social life in contemporary
societies that are characterized by postindustrialization, consumerism, and global
communications. Postmodern societies are characterized by an information explosion and
an economy in which large numbers of people either provide or apply information, or they
are employed in professional occupations or service jobs.

Pages: 20 LO: 12

11. Outline the six (6) steps of the conventional research model.

Answer: The conventional research model focuses on quantitative research and


includes the following steps: (1) Select and clearly define the research problem (topic),
(2) Review previous researchit is important to review the literature to see what others
have written about the topic, (3) Formulate the hypothesisa statement of the relationship
between two or more concepts (independent variable and dependent variable) and create
an operational definitionan explanation of an abstract concept in terms of observable
features that are specific enough to measure the variable, (4) Develop the research design
considering the units of analysis (what or whom is being studied) and the time frame of
the study (cross-sectional studies or longitudinal studies), (5) Collect (random sampling
and probability sampling) and analyze the data (validity and reliability), and (6) Draw
conclusions (noting limitations of the study) and report the findings.

Pages: 27 LO: 3

12. Describe the issue of media framing and how it relates specifically to suicide.

Answer: Media framing refers to the process by which information and entertainment are
packaged by the mass media before being presented to the public. This includes such
things as the amount of exposure given to a story, where it is placed, the positive or
negative tone it conveys, and its accompanying headlines, photographs, or other visual or
auditory effects. When this is done, the media is able to emphasize some beliefs and
value over others. When the media presents a suicide it often does so as a final
precipitating situation. The media does not inform audiences that this was not the only
cause of the suicide. In fact, many factors often interact in a complex manner to contribute
to a persons decision to commit suicide.

Pages: 33 34 LO: 4

13. Describe the major ethical concerns in sociological research.

Answer: Researchers are required to obtain written informed consent statements from
the persons they study. The American Sociological Association (ASA) Code of Ethics sets
forth certain basic standards that sociologists must follow in conducting research.
(1) researchers must endeavor to maintain objectivity and integrity in their research by
disclosing their research findings in full and including all possible interpretations of the
data (even those interpretations that do not support their own viewpoints), (2) researchers
must safeguard the participants right to privacy and dignity while protecting them from
harm, (3) researchers must protect confidential information provided by participants, even
when this information is not considered to be privileged (legally protected, as in the case
between doctor and patient and between attorney and client) and legal pressure is applied
to reveal this information, and (4) researchers must acknowledge research collaboration
and assistance they receive from others and disclose all sources of financial support.
Sociologists are obligated to adhere to this code and to protect research participants.

37
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

Page: 36 LO: 6

14. Briefly discuss either (a) secondary analysis or (b) the experiment in terms of what it
involves along with its advantages and disadvantages.

Answer: (a) secondary analysis uses already existing materials, materials that were
collected by others. Examples include: public records, official reports, and raw data
collected by other researchers. This method includes content analysis which is the
systematic examination of cultural artifacts or various forms of communication to extract
hematic data and draw conclusions. One of its strengths is that data are readily available
and inexpensive. Also, since the researcher did not collect the data personally, the
chances of bias may be reduced. A major problem is that the researcher does not always
know if the data are incomplete, unauthentic or inaccurate. (b) The experiment is a
carefully designed situation in which the researcher studies the impact of certain variables
on subjects attitudes or behaviors. An experiment has an experimental group which is
exposed to the independent variable and a control group where the subjects are not
exposed to the independent variable. A major advantage is the control which the
experimenter has while the greatest limitation is that the experiment is artificial.

Page: 34 36 LO: 14

15. Briefly describe the warning signs of suicide.

Answer: The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention suggests that there are certain
warning signs. One of these is talking about death or suicide. One warning statement is:
Everyone would be better off without me. A second sign is making plans. Here, a person
may give away his/her possessions. Showing signs of depression is another warning sign.
Although most depressed individuals are not suicidal, most suicidal people are depressed.
Serious depression tends to be shown as a loss of pleasure or withdrawal from activities
that a person has previously enjoyed.

Page: 37 LO: 4

ESSAY SECTION
1. What is sociology and why should one study this particular discipline?

Pages 4 6 LO: 4, 9

The following are suggested areas for students to address in the essay:

Definition of sociology

Definition of society

How sociology differs from common sense knowledge and myths

2. With the increasing diversity of the population, what personal troubles and public issues
do you think are most important for the U.S. society to think about?

Pages: 5 6 LO: 4

The following are suggested areas for students to address in the essay:

Address the terms, sociological imagination, personal troubles, and public issues

38
Chapter 1

Identify several possible personal troubles (individual experiences)

Discuss how an individual could effectively cope/alleviate personal troubles

Identify several possible public issues (societal experiences)

Discuss how society could effectively cope/alleviate public issues

Encourage students to include any personal experiences (personal troubles/public issues)


in their responses

3. Suicide is a fairly significant problem in the U.S. Discuss.

Pages: 5 -6; 20- 21; 23 - 24; 38 LO: 4

The following are suggested areas for students to address in the essay:

The differences among groups (male vs. female, black vs. white, etc.)

How each of the three theories would analyze the issue

The warning signs of suicide

4. A number of Europeans were important in establishing sociology. Discuss these


figures in terms of their contributions.

Pages: 10 16 LO: 1

The following are suggested areas for students to address in the essay:

Auguste Comte: founder of sociology, social statics and social dynamics, positivism

Herbert Spencer: social Darwinism, survival of the fittest, Theory of Evolution

Emile Durkheim: social facts, anomie

Karl Marx: clash between groups, class conflict, bourgeoisie vs. proletariat

Max Weber: sociology as value-free, study of bureaucracies

Georg Simmel: group size (dyad vs. triad), industrialization and urbanization

5. A major difference between the theoretical perspectives is the level of analysis.


Identify the focus of the three major perspectives (functionalist, conflict, and symbolic
interactionist). What are criticisms of each?

Pages: 20 24 LO: 12

The following are suggested areas for students to address in the essay:

Define the functionalist perspective

Apply the concepts of manifest function, latent function, and dysfunctions

39
The Sociological Perspective and Research Process

Define the conflict perspective

Identify what might be the scarce resources involved in the conflict

Define the symbolic interactionist perspective

Identify the criticisms of each.

6. Discuss the major research methods used by the sociologist.

Pages: 24 36 LO: 14

The following are suggested areas for students to address in the essay:

Survey research: what it is, advantages and disadvantages

Secondary Analysis of Existing Data: what it is, advantages and disadvantages

Field Research: differing types, advantages and disadvantages

Experiments: what it involves, advantages and disadvantages

40