Sociology

A sociologist’s goal is to identify recurring patterns of and influences on social behavior. Sociologists use nearly all the methods of acquiring information, from advanced mathematical statistics to the interpretation of texts to study social behavior. The sociologist use surveys, direct observation, experiments, and existing sources. They use these methods to solve problems about social behavior in human groups as well as individuals. In their research, they look for primary resources. These primary resources can be census and vital reports from the government.
The first method is the survey. A survey is a study, generally in the form of an interview or questionnaire, which provide sociologists with information concerning how people think and act. It is often a collection and analysis of responses of large samples of people. The survey polls are designed to elicit people’s opinions, attitudes, and sentiments about a specific topic. A survey should be precise. The only way to make sure a survey is precise is to make the question specific. An effective question must be clear and understandable. This will eliminate problems and give sociologists the type of information desired.
There are two main types of surveys. They are the interview and the questionnaire. These two methods pose a considerable challenge for investigators. There are many advantages of the interview method. One is that the interviewer can obtain a high response rate because people would not turn them down face to face as opposed to the questionnaire. Another advantage is that an interviewer can dig deep in to the person’s feelings and get a true answer. In a written questionnaire, the sociologist wouldn’t know if the person were lying about the subject. In an interview, the researcher can look at a person’s facial expressions and hand gestures. The only advantage that the questionnaire has is that it’s cheaper to undergo the study. Sometimes it is difficult to use these methods because it doesn’t conform to race and gander participants.
Another method is observation. An observation is a first hand account of information from the person or persons studying the group. Observation studies may be used to improve the policies and structures of organizations. Some sociologists obtain information through participant observation. Participant observation allows a sociologist to temporarily become or pretending to become a member of the group being studied. Sociologists also obtain information by relying on knowledgeable informants of the group. This makes the observation method the most time consuming method of research. A person must involve him/herself thoroughly and become one with the group. The observation process may produce some challenges for the researcher. The researchers should fully understand what they’re observing. The researcher should not develop close relationships to where he/she can not come up with a proper conclusion.

Sociologists also use experiments as one of their research methods. Sociologists use an experiment to study cause and effect relationships. An experiment is a test or trial artificially created. The situation allows the researcher to form variables and introduce control variables. In order to carry out an experiment, two groups of people are selected. One would be the experimental group and the other the control group. The experimental group is exposed to an independent variable. The independent variable is altered and influences a change in the experimental group.

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Sociologists often use old data in their research. Old data would include maps, census, and statistics. They use secondary analysis, which is a variety of techniques that make use of data. Usually, information researchers get is not looked at the same way as it was by the initial collectors. People’s behavior is non-reactive because it is not influenced. The only problem with using other people’s data is that it may not be accurate, and it may not relate exactly to what the researcher is looking for.
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Sociology

The social growth of the young in different classes
A Youth in Poverty
To most, it’s very easy to imagine how it would feel to grow up without much of anything in life. Hell…I can tell you first hand what it feels like to not have a decent pair of shoes or pants without holes in them, or old “hand-me-down” toys while most of the kids you know have “state-of-the-art” toys. To many children in this kind of situation, it seems like a very bleak world to live in. No child should ever have to experience this kind of life. However, due to ignorant parents and an even more jacked-up government, there are many children that will always be in this predicament.
Now, it would be hard to think of any good coming out of living in such conditions. But just like a many things in this so-called existence, a person would have to look very hard to find the good things. There are, in fact, good things about living in the pits of poverty. For instance, children that are poor tend to appreciate things much more than a child with a more “privileged” life. When they get new things, they treat those things like intricately wrought gold, or a fine work of art. To them, a brand-new pair of Jordan’ gym shoes or a ‘PS2’ seems like pure treasure. Over time, this quality of appreciation will develop continually over the years. They will make responsible choices on things that they will always appreciate. With hope and a prayer, they will be able to pass down this quality to their future generations.
Another good quality that poor children have is their ability to socialize. When you are poor, you have little room to fear embarrassment. If you’re embarrassed about meeting new people or talking in front of a crowd, they you may as well be embarrassed with everything else in you life of poverty. Being poor is humiliating enough….being scared to talk is nothing compared to that. A kid that has just about nothing in life will hope to make as many new friends as they possibly can. Possibly so that they can fill in the little void they are likely to grow out of having so little. They are very assertive, and will do anything for attention. Jokes, stories, comments, and the sacred art of “Blazing” or “Baking” are the tools that poor children will use for socialization.


Possibly the most rewarding thing a child can get out of being poor is a strong sense of work ethic. Parents are always telling their kids to, “Appreciate hard work.” But this lesson is more profound in the poor. A parent that has lived in poverty all their life will tell their child to, “Always work hard, and never settle for less. Don’t let your kids go through what I made you go through.” With this lesson at heart, a child will likely work hard at everything they do in life. This can expand to getting good grades in school, working hard at their chores, and doing good work whenever they get a job. This is a priceless lesson that children in poverty can keep close in mind.

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Now, there are many, many, many bad things about living in poverty. I can easily write a 20-page paper on the bad things the most poor kids have to go through. But I’m only going to list the one thing that I feel is going to rip most people apart at the seams. This risk goes for all classes, but is most common in poor people. This potential threat is nothing more than jealousy.
A person that says they never felt jealousy is lying thought their teeth. Even God-Almighty gets jealous when he feels that someone thinks they are better than He is. Otherwise, he would not have flooded the Earth in Noah’s time or tortured the Egyptians in Moses’ time. My point is that all people get jealous at times, and all get jealous for different reasons. But in poor people, the jealousy is most likely to sprout from a single thought: “Why can’t I have what they have?!”
This train of thought can make a seemingly harmless little boy, into a sneaky, conniving thief that will do anything necessary to get what they desire. The boy may look to one of his fellow classmates are see them with a new pair of shoes, or see them talking on the newest model cell phone. And that one glorious thought will go through their mind; “Why can’t I have what he has?”
But this thought can make another, more dangerous thought come to mind; “What can I do to get what he has??” The answer is not likely to be a good one. A poor boy desperate for fancier things in life will not go about doing things the honest way…on the contrary, they will do whatever it takes as long as it’s easy to get away with. They might steal the item from the kid they seen it with by being sneaky, for though more violent means like “jumping” the boy. Or they might not take the item from the kid. ((It would look funny if he lost his, and you got the same one he just lost.)) The poor boy might go the store and steal one for himself. This may seem easy….but now he runs the risk of getting caught, arrested, and one strike on their record. The boy is likely to give himself his ultimate demise due to his envy of other children…and all because he feels that he can’t have better things in life.


Conclusion Time!!: There are both good and bad things about being poor…..and it’s really hard to determine which quality outweighs the other. Most kids are bound to think of all the bad they went through in their lives of poverty, seeing as they are so young and unable to look at things in a much wider perspective. But just like buried treasure, they will just have to dig deep enough to find the potential good in the “poor life”. Take me for instance; if I were to give into the sadness and despair of being poor, I would have come to MY ultimate demise a long time ago.
A Middle-Class Youth
It’s really hard to classify the struggles that a youth of the middle class would have to go through. They have little room to complain, seeing as they have most of the common comforts life has to offer. A nice home, food on a regular basis, good medical care, and a decent school to attend. And even if they are not able to get everything they want like toys, clothes and games, they have everything they need to keep them happy. It’s obviously foolish to say that a youth in the middle class would want a more wealthier lifestyle. So I now go directly to the worse things about living in the middle class as a youth.
A middle class youth, in my opinion, is nothing more that a living lump of clay. They are easily molded by those that wish to control them, or they are able to mold themselves into the person they want to become…for better, or for worse.
What I mean when I say, “Molded by people that want to control them” I mean that people ((most likely their friends)) will try to control them. A middle class youth is likely to have never been exposed to these kinds of people in the earlier years of their lives, so they will be extremely naive when it comes to dealing with “moochers” and “leeches”. These “users” will have the youth do things for them, and the child will gladly do them, mainly because they want to please their so-called friends. The range of activities include stealing, lying to loved ones, becoming lazy, skipping school, cheating, as well as other, more deplorable activities that I am unable to list in a school assignment. The “moochers” will control the youth for as long as they need him/her, and then when they took all they can from him/her, they will dump the youth faster than a ton of bricks.
I listed earlier that a middle class youth is “likely to shape themselves into the person they want to become”. This means that the child will look for an independent lifestyle to pursue for the future. This is both a pro’ and con’. A pro’ because the youth could choose to make responsible choices, do the right things, and live and upstanding life. But it can be a con’ because a youth is most likely going to turn down the wrong fork-in-the-road. For example, a middle class youth that has lived a somewhat sheltered life for the last 14 years in his/her life. The youth is will want to find something more to live for…to make their own living…to dissent from what their parents want him/her to become. In this search for their own life, they will come across some negative things that can hurt them such as drugs, alcohol, sex, gangs, ect. Unless the child is wise and strong against temptation, they will be pulled into the world of corruption they accidentally stumbled on.
Conclusion Time!!: There are pros’ and cons’ about living in the middle class…and just like a life of poverty, there are more cons than pros. But if the youth has an uncommonly strong sense of wisdom, he/she can prevent themselves from getting hurt. For this wisdom to grow, they will need support and teaching from those wiser than them. In some instances, the youth will have to learn from the mistakes they are likely to make. They must trust in themselves, and try hard to never sell themselves short for anyone.


A Youth in the Upper-Class
What most would give to live the good life. Eating the finest foods, going to the best schools, being taken care of by the best doctors, shopping at the most expensive stores, getting what you wanted, when you wanted it , and how you wanted it…..there are many that would kill to have an everyday living like this. Most would think that because one has so much money, that they would never come across any problems in life….if they did, they could just pay to get rid of the problem!! And it is this very thought that can do the wrong things for a youth living in the upper class.
While it’s very true that a “rich kid” gets everything that want and more, there is something very wrong with the thought of having everything you set your eyes on. When you get everything you want while doing little or no work to get those things, you develop very little room to appreciate the gifts that you were blessed with. A wealthy youth can receive gifts from his/her dearest friend on their birthday, and all they can say when they open them is, “Hmph….”
Wealthy kids have everything they want and more, but do they have everything they need? After all, what’s money, clothes, cars, and jewelry when you see it as nothing more than material possessions? They are absolutely nothing. Sure, they can go out and buy up half of the entire planet, but do they have what they need to survive? Happiness, responsibility, knowledge, courage, trust, friendships, purity, faith, and love. There is a very high chance that a rich kid will have these qualities diminished, due to the fact that they think that any problems can be solved with large quantities of money. It’s true that “Cash rules everything around us, gotta get the cream, dolla dolla bill, ya’ll.” ((the words of Wu-Tang)) But in reality, money can never bring forth true happiness.
Also, wealthy kids with a silver spoon in their mouth since birth are prone to developing a high amount of arrogance…..I can tell you about how many times I wanted to knock a rich kid’s teeth into his brains…..((Ahem…)) They think that since they are rich, they are better that the entire world. When they think this, I wish nothing more than to strangle them with a garden hose and beat them with a wet towel….((Ahem, ahem…)) Everyone it this world should know…that even though they live life on a silver platter, they should remember one thing; when silver is not taken care of properly, it can and will tarnish over time. They may think that they are better than the world, but they will mess their lives up with that arrogant attitude. They can lose friends, family ties, relationships with other loved ones, jobs, schools, and other things of importance. No one is better than the world…no matter how much money they may have, they are only human.
Conclusion Time: The “glorious” life ain’t all that it’s cracked up to be. Because when a person wakes up from the fantasy of having everything they want, they are able to realize that money is nothing more than paper with a dead man’s face on it. The youth should know that there is more to life than wealth. Look hard, and they will be able to find what I’m talking about.

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