The Role and Scope of Sociology Sociology is concerned about the social facts in the family, community, economy, religion, language, etc. and how these factors affect our individual lives. According to the New Oxford American Dictionary, sociology is the study of the development, structure, and functioning of human society. Sociology is important because it describes the human behavior and explains how human beings behave under certain conditions and situations.
There are many social factors that can influence the growth of an individual and of groups of people such as wealth of the family, eligious practices of the church, access to quality education and more. It is up to the sociologist to trace all of the contributing factors. Sociology determines how specific events came to happen. Certain social forces may be more prominent in some communities than in others that will more likely produce tension in opposing groups within the community.
Such is the example of the conflicts between the Muslims and the Christians in the Mindanao-? Sulu area. The rapid immigration of Christians in largely Muslim communities caused power struggles between the two groups, eventually resulting o violence. Sociology exposes how authority and power are derived within the society and how the power is upheld by the dominating social class. Sociology also attempts to establish the relations between the different sectors in the society such as the relationship of the state and church. To obtain an objective outcome, the results of the study must be based on observations of actual human behavior.
One of the most commonly used techniques is the survey where a sample of a general population is given a set of standardized questions. Another research technique is the participant observation here the sociologist joins the group in their daily activities until the underlying patterns of behavior are apparent. Each has its own limitations so it is important to identify which method is appropriate for the study. The choice of method often depends on what the sociologist intends to investigate. If time, budget, and manpower permits the use of more than one approach, then the better. Sociology is a useful field of study for humankind. The findings of sociology may be used in other fields of science and may be used in refining and/or reforming certain social policies and welfare.