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Sociology and Social Dynamics Greg Bohall M.S., C.R.C., CADC-II.

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Presentation on theme: "Sociology and Social Dynamics Greg Bohall M.S., C.R.C., CADC-II."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sociology and Social Dynamics Greg Bohall M.S., C.R.C., CADC-II

2 What is Sociology?  Sociology is:  The study of society.  A social science involving the study of the social lives of people, groups, and societies.  The study of behavior as social beings.  Ranges in studying short contacts between anonymous individuals to global social processes (American Sociological Association, 2011).  Human Relations is:  The skill or ability to work effectively through and with other people (Lamberton & Minor, 2010).  (American Sociological Association, 2011; Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

3 Review of terms…  Ethnicity: categories of people who are distinctive on the basis of national origin (German, Italian, etc.).  Ethnicity attempts to capture people’s actual practices  Race: categories that encompass different ethnic groups.  White race: Italian, Irish, Swedish  Focusing only on race hides important differences  Sex: refers to males and females (chromosomal, anatomical, hormonal, physiological).  Gender: socially constructed models associated with each sex.  (Rosenblum & Travis, 2012)

4 Review of terms…  Sexual Orientation: directionality of one’s sexual interests toward members of the same sex, the other sex, or both (Rathus, Nevid, & Fichner-Rathus, 2011).  Social class: seldomly discussed so definition is not well developed. We almost never speak of ourselves in society in class terms as it is not a central category in America (Rosenblum & Travis, 2012).  (Rathus, Nevid, & Fichner-Rathus, 2011; Rosenblum & Travis, 2012)

5 Some culture…  “Culture provides one with generally shared understandings and models for making meaning of one’s experiences. Cultural beliefs present standards of behavior that are internalized over time, and cultural traditions offer a soothing sense of social safety. At the heart of these shared understandings are the interpersonal networks of relations in which one is embedded”  (Rosenblum & Travis, 2012)

6 Cultural Shapings  Values: The worth or importance you attach to different factors in your life.  Tangible: something real in a physical sense.  Intangible: something not real to touch but exists in connection to something else.  Norms: A standard of behavior expected of group members.  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

7 Gender  Gender roles: Complex clusters of ways in which males and females are expected to behave within a specific culture.  Gender Identity: One’s belief that one is male or female.  Gender Schema: A cluster of mental representations about male and female physical qualities, behaviors, and personality traits.  Gender Stereotype: A fixed, conventional idea about people based on their gender.  What are some gender stereotypes?  (Rathus, Nevid, & Fichner-Rathus, 2011)

8 Groups  A group is:  Two or more people who interact, share common goals, have unspoken or formal rules, or norms, maintain stable role relationships, and form subgroups.  Group Dynamics are:  The ways in which groups operate.  The cornerstone of human relations.  The set of interpersonal relationships within a group that determine how group members relate to one another and that influences task performance.  What are some famous groups?  Occupy movement, sports teams, KKK, The Brady Bunch  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

9 Why do people join groups?  Formal group: governed by formal structure of organization.  Informal group: forms around common interests, habits, personality traits.  Affiliation: basic need to be with other people and relate.  Attraction: tend to be attracted to other people who are like them or who they would like to become.  Activities: the group is involved in interesting activities.  Assistance: the group offers help or assistance in some area of their lives.  Proximity: form a tie with people they see frequently (Ex: work). (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

10 Some Group Dynamics  Status: The rank an individual holds within a group.  Ex: President, Vice President, Secretary, etc.  Group Process: The way group members deal with one another while working on a task.  Group Conformity: Behaving in a way that meets a specified standard in coordination with a group.  Groupthink: A problematic type of thinking that results from group members who are overly willing to agree with one another because of time pressure, stress, and low collective self esteem.  Too much conformity decreases creativity and discourages communication.  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

11 Barriers to Group Effectiveness  We have all seen poor decisions made by ineffective groups whether it has been in work or in the news (Netflix???, Bank of America???).  One main reason for an ineffective group is due to Groupthink.  Members strive for unanimity and it overrides their motivation to speak up.  Instead of evaluating other courses of action, the group gets 100 percent agreement as soon as possible.  Bad decisions due to groupthink:  Enron collapse (2001), WorldCom bankruptcy (2002), Washington Mutual bank collapse (2008).  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

12 Combatting Groupthink  Assign critics: reasonable objections and doubts should be encouraged.  Leaders act impartial: take impartial role.  Set up subgroups: subgroups with separate leaders.  Consider alternatives: subgroups/separate leaders/larger group reassembles after issue discussed in subgroups.  Consult with outsiders: trusted associates outside group.  Invite experts: encourage and challenge views of group.  Assign devil’s advocates: at least one member (debater)  Consider the competition: Plaintiff vs. Defense  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

13 Diversity  Stereotypes: Your thoughts or beliefs about specific groups of people.  Prejudice: How you feel as a result of the stereotypes you believe in.  Bias: A tendency to judge people before knowing them, basing the judgment only on their membership in some group or category of people.  Discrimination: Your behavior(an action), or what you do (or intend) as a result of your stereotypes AND prejudice.  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

14 The Ism’s  Ethnocentrism: The belief that one’s ethnic group is more normal than others; an emotional source of prejudice.  Racism: Prejudice AND discrimination based on race.  Sexism: Prejudice AND discrimination based on gender.  Ageism: Prejudice AND discrimination toward older people.  Economic Prejudice: Prejudice AND discrimination toward people who are poorer or wealthier than you are.  Other sources:  Overweight/Underweight, Homosexuality, Disability, Religious Groups, Pregnant Women.  (Lamberton & Minor, 2010)

15 References American Sociological Association (2011). What is Sociology? Retrieved from: Lamberton, L. H. & Minor, L. (2010). Human Relations; Strategies for Success. McGraw Hill: New York, NY. Rathus, S. A., Nevid, J. S., & Fichner-Rathus, L. (2011). Human Sexuality in a World of Diversity (8 th Ed.). Allyn and Bacon: Boston, MA. Rosenblum, K. E. & Travis, T. C. (2012). The Meaning of Difference (6 th Ed.). McGraw Hill: New York, NY.


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