Problems of Studying Sociology

Topics: Sociology, Science, Social sciences Pages: 6 (2070 words) Published: March 3, 2013
Sociology is the science that studies human society, social behaviour and social life. Sociology as a social science has equally usefulness and limitations. This paper discusses the usefulness of sociology and outlines its major limitations as a science. To discuss the question the paper is framed around introduction major terms, the discussion of the usefulness of sociology, outline the major limitations as a science and finally conclude. DEFINITIONS AND MEANING

Sociology is the scientific study of man’s behaviour in relation to other groups and individuals with whom he interacts or the scientific study of human social life, groups and societies. Similarly, La Vern defined as the study of human society and social behaviour. However, Giddens defined sociology as the systematic study of human societies, giving special emphasis to modern and industrialized systems besides being a social science that concerns itself with understanding of human behaviour. The three social scientists have all recognised that sociology is a science. Science is the use of systematic methods of empirical investigation, the analysis of data, theoretical thinking and logical assessment of arguments to develop a body of knowledge about a particular theme. Similarly, Macionis defined science as a logical system that bases knowledge on systematic observation. Giddens definition of science endorsed sociology as a scientific endeavour for the reason that it engages systematic methods of empirical investigations, analysis of data and assessment of theories in the light of evidence and logical arguments. Sociology is one of the social sciences including economics, human geography and psychology that in the process of study attempts to explain and understand the behaviour of human beings in society. It is studied because it has usefulness as a scientific discipline. USEFULNESS OF SOCIOLOGY

Sociology arose out of the need to understand the structure, changes and development of society. Additionally, sociology emerged out of the need for knowledge about human social problems caused by people that eventually affects a lot of people. Thus, sociological knowledge is used to guide society and serve it from destruction. Sociology has several uses for our lives. Sociology gives us the awareness of cultural differences that allows us to see the social world from many perspectives. To some certain extent if we correctly understand how others live, we too obtain a better understanding of what their problems are. Besides, practical policies that are not based on knowledgeable awareness of the ways of life of people have little chance of success. Furthermore, sociology provides practical help in assessing the results of policy initiatives and may be demonstrated by a programme of practical reform that may basically fail to achieve what its designers sought or may produce unintended consequences of an unfortunate kind.

Sociology has the ability to provide us with self enlightenment which is all about increased self understanding. The more we know about why we act as we do and overall working of our society, the more likely we are to be able to influence our own futures. Self enlightened groups often benefit from sociological research by using the information collected to respond in an effective way to government policies.

Many sociologists concern themselves with practical matters as professionals. People trained in sociology are employed as industrial consultants, urban planners, social workers and personnel managers. Thus, sociology brings about better understanding of society and as such helps in the promotion of careers in law, journalism business and medicine. Despite having numerous uses, sociology has as well numerous limitations that are propounded in subsequent paragraphs. MAJOR LIMITATIONS AS SCIENCE

Sociology is a science that seeks answers to questions through empirical research. Empirical research uses experience, observation...
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