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The Benefits of Sociology

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Sociology, the study of society, is a diverse field as sociologists observe and examine how people communicate and interact with one another and how social structures such as organizations, social categories like race, age and social institutions like religion and education shapes our behavior. (Crossman, 2018). One of the few areas that sociology focuses on are family, education and religion. According to Crossman (2018), family falls under primary social groups where things like domestic abuse, marriage and child rearing are observed. Sociology helps us understand how institution and individuals are affected and defined in different cultures by these aspects.

Next, sociology also examines how educational institutions such as universities and their aspects, for example, peer influence and school resources can affect learning outcomes and determine social experiences and structures. As for religion, the study focuses on development, history and practices in the society by giving us a view on how religion can affect social interactions both outside and within the religion. (Crossman, 2018).

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To start off, I believe that sociology makes us a better person by positively forcing us to become more involved with the world around us.

If we think about it, it is hard to stay cocooned in our own thought bubble because we are constantly looking for connections. We benefit from it by being more active and informed about things that goes in our family or communities. (Brian, 2018). After all, society shapes the way of life. Besides that, from what I have learned these past few weeks, sociology made me a better person because I have started to understand the meaning of race, gender, class. In the process, I also start to realize that I am who I am because of society, my family and peers. It made me a better person because I learn new things about myself that I have not known about. For example, I am fully aware of the importance of being true and honest to myself when it comes to the things I like, dislike, my feelings, values and beliefs. I believe that it is because of my ability to understand other people. Moreover, it makes me a better person because it teaches me to be curious and ask questions. For instance, if I were to learn about a different culture’s lifestyle, I can initiate a conversation with someone from that community. Therefore, in the process of interaction and socialization, it encourages me to be more confident and also learn something new.

Furthermore, sociology encourages us to become better citizens because it helps us be more informed. For instance, we tend to develop interests in topics like human trafficking, child marriages, abortions and the LGBTQ community in the dynamics of race, culture, or poverty. Sociology helps us realize that some traditions like genital mutilation is not necessary to be practiced as it hurts women to the point of death. We learn how to adapt but also bring change to things that go out of the line of cultural relativism. (Macionis, 2018). It also makes us better citizens because we tend to go against the norm in a positive manner by stimulating change in the society. For example, promoting gender equality, accepting differences in terms of sexual orientation, legalizing abortion for raped victims and mothers with medical condition and more. Other than that, as a Malaysian, I feel myself gradually becoming a better citizen because I have learned through sociology that we as people of a democratic country are expected to participate in shaping our society. According to an article by Rider University (n.d), democracy will die without active citizens. Therefore, I strongly believe that it is important for individuals and the community as a whole to understand how societies work and how our contribution play a crucial role in sustaining our democracy through social change organizations, local governments, and school districts. Likewise, sociology makes us a better citizen by educating us about how the government and laws are influenced by people and how society and social norms are affected by the political structure and the legal system. It also allows us to better understand our duties and rights. (Oak, 2018). Additionally, we often hear in the news about how people’s lives are constantly put in danger throughout the world. Similarly, we also read about indigenous tribes competing with one another to fight for identity. In a world with such terrible conditions, as a student who studies sociology, I think that it gives us an opportunity to collaborate and find solutions to a peaceful society through the idea of network, institutions, development and it’s problems. For instance, in Malaysia, all of us came together as one during the elections by voting for a different political party in order to release our country from the ever so notorious and corrupted leader.

Unlike any typical psychologist, I am going against the norm of “all psychologists must become child psychologists” by venturing into criminal psychology or more commonly known as criminologist. This field is closely related to forensic psychology where we study the thoughts and behaviors of criminals. (Cherry, 2018). Some might think that I chose this field under the influence of television shows like Criminal minds and CSI, but that’s not the case. I am interested in studying about why criminals do what they do and what drives them to do some of the most notorious things? Sociology helps us analyze society and its affects on criminals. We often associate criminals and their behaviors on words like “mentally ill” or “crazy”. Most of us don’t think about the external factors that can affect ones behaviors. According to Brown (2016), there are multiple theories about why people commit crimes and it is all interrelated to the criminal’s thought process during, before and after the crime. The ways that society impacts the thoughts and actions of an individual is determined by sociology. The study prepares criminologists to understand the relationship between criminals, society and how it can provide justice and contribute to crime prevention. (Brown, 2016). In addition, social groups have labels which are placed on them by sociologists to find information to the lifestyle and background of people who act in deviance verses those who act in conformity. Sociology paves the way for criminologists so that when we interrogate or counsel criminals, we don’t approach them with a narrow mindset. Instead, we are aware that society, peers, media, and family may have influenced their actions.

In a nutshell, sociology is important because it allows us to change our way of thinking and instead of having a narrow and close mindset, this study helps us to think critically, rationally, and logically. Sociology is valuable because it keeps us informed on current situations which contributes to the solution of problems that may arise in a community. Learning about sociology gives us an understanding on why things happen and why people behave the way they do. We also learn about the struggles that all types of people from different parts of the world go through. In short, it makes us empathetic. (Southers, 2016). On top of that, it guides us to understand ourselves, our limitations, potentials, resources and most importantly our identity and role in society. (Mondal, n.d).

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The Benefits of Sociology. (2020, Aug 05). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/the-benefits-of-sociology/

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