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MCAT Pysch/Social

Class 1: Larger Social Structures/Research Method

Qst/TermAnswer
Life Expectancy The number of years from birth an individual is expected to live on average
Absolute Poverty An inability to secure the basic necessities of life
Relative Poverty The inability to meet the average standard of living defined by a given society
What is Socioeconomic Status? How is it measured? 1. The social standing or class of an individual or group 2. It is measured as a combination of education, income, and occupation
The 3 P's of Socioeconomic Status Prestige, Power,Property
What is prestige? One's reputation and standing in society
What is power? The ability to enforce one's will on other people
What is property? Possessions, income, and other wealth
What is accessibility to healthcare? The ability for someone to obtain existing resources across the U.S.
What are the 3 systems of social stratification? Caste System, Class System, Meritocracy
Characteristics of the Caste System Lower social mobility, Less dependent on effort, Social status defined by birth. Example: slavery
Characteristics of the Class System Some degree of social mobility, Social status determined by birth and individual merit. Example: English royalty
Characteristics of Meritocracy Higher social mobility, More dependent upon effort, Social status based on individual merit. Example: Boys Scouts/Girl Scouts
What determines your social mobility? Physical Capital, Cultural Capital, Social Capital
What is Physical Capital? Money, Property, Land, Other Physical Capital
What is Cultural Capital? Non-financial characteristics evaluated by society
What is Social Capital? Who you know, Social Networks
What the major sociological theories? Functionalism (structural functionalism), Conflict Theory, Symbolic Interactionism, Social Constructionism
Microsociology vs. Macrosociology Microsociology is the aggregate/overall effect of individual interactions. Macrosociology is the focus on the movement and interactions of larger social structures.
What is Functionalism? A theory that views society as a complex system composed of many individual parts working together to maintain solidarity and social stability.
Is Functionalism Macro or Micro-level theory? It is a macro-level theory which means that it focuses on the elements that shape society as a whole.
Who is Emile Durkheim? He is considered one of the fathers of modern sociology, pioneered modern social research, and established the field of sociology as separate from psychology and political philosophy. Major proponent of Functionalism.
Manifest Function vs. Latent Function Manifest Function is the intended or obvious function of a social structure. Latent Function is the unintended, less recognizable consequences of a social structure.
What is Conflict Theory? Views society as a competition for limited resources; in society, individuals and groups compete for social, political, and material resources.
What level is it? Macro-level theory
Who is Karl Marx? Considered a founder of modern sociology whose theories about economy, society, and politics form the foundation for Conflict Theory.
Who is Max Weber? Considered a founder of modern sociology who refined Marx's assertions about conflict in society.
Founding Fathers of Sociology Durkheim, Weber, and Marx
What is Symbolic Interactionism? A theory that asserts that society is socially constructed through human interpretation; this theory analyzes the subjective meanings that people impose on objects, events, and behaviors.
Who is George Herbert Mead? Considered one of the founders of social psychology and founded the symbolic interactionism school of thought.
What is Social Constructionism? A theory that suggests the we actively shape our society through social interactions; social institutions & knowledge are created by individuals interacting w/ the system, rather than having any inherent truth of their own.
What is a social construct? A concept or practice that is created by a group. Essentially everybody in society agrees to treat a certain aspect a certain way regardless of its inherent value and therefore determines its value.
Is social constructionism macro or micro-level theory? Micro-level theory
What is status? A socially defined position or role within society.
Master Status The role or position that dominates; this tends to determine you general "place" in society
Ascribed Status A status assigned to you by society regardless of your effort
Achieved Status A status that is earned
What is Role? A socially defined expectation about how you will behave based upon your status
Role Conflict Occurs when 2 or more statuses are held by an individual and there is conflict between the expectations for each status.
Role Strain Occurs when you face conflicting expectations for a singe role
Role Exit Occurs when you transition from one role to another
What is a social network? A web of social relationships, including those in which a person is directly linked to others as well as those in which people are indirectly connected through others
What is an organization? A large group of people with a common purpose; these tend to be more complex, impersonal, and hierarchically structured than networks
Types of Organizations Utilitarian, Normative, and Coercive
Utilitarian Organization Members motivated by some incentive or reward. Example: job, education
Normative Organization Members motivated by a common cause or belief. Example: Volunteer groups
Coercive Organization Members have been forced to join. Examples: military draft, sex slave trade, prison system, cult groups
Independent Variable The treatment or intervention in a study that is manipulated by the research; also known as the "manipulated variable" or "controlled variable"
Dependent Variable The outcome variable that is measured and not directly manipulated by the researcher; also known as the "output variable" or the "measured variable"
Double-Blind Experiment An experiment in which information that might lead to biased results is concealed from both the researcher conducting the experiment and the subjects
Confounding Variable An extraneous variable that influences the dependent variable but is not of interest to the researcher. It gives an explanation for the difference between samples that is not due to manipulation by the experimenter.
How do we control for confounding variables? Consider possible confounding variables and make sure that both experimental and control groups are similar with respect to confounding variables
Correlational Study A study that determines if there is a relationship between 2 variables
Phenomenological Study A form of descriptive qualitative research in which participants detail their own personal experiences
Case Study Intensive study of one individual's experiences. Often the individual has a condition of interest.
Internal Validity The extent to which we can say that the change in outcome variable (dependent variable) is due to intervention.
External Validity The extent to which findings can be generalized to the real world.
Created by: bri92