notes 2 - Sociology of the Life Course SOC 308 Professor...

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Sociology of the Life Course SOC 308 Professor Kristen Schultz Lee TA: Sarah Glann Overview o What is the sociology of the life course? o Review of sociology o Analysis of marital happiness o Cross-sectional vs. longitudinal research Limitations and benefits of cross-sectional data o Cross-sectional data analysis with the GSS What is the sociology of the life course? The life course perspective is an approach to the study of human behavior that emphasizes: o Socio-historical context o Linked lives o Agency within constraints o Timing The life course perspective is not a theory but rather is an orienting framework What is sociology? o “The General in the Specific”-Peter Berger (1963) o When sociologists see people do things, we try to imagine the general patterns that apply to these specific actions o Choices are made within constraints How does sociology differ from the other social sciences? o From psychology? o From economics? o From anthropology? Important Concepts o Theory: explains “how certain things happen or are as they are” (Stark 2001). o Sociological research paradigm: an orienting framework for sociological investigation o Empirical Research attempts to discern whether or not a theory works, using scientific methods o Variables: anything that changes or varies across people
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notes 2 - Sociology of the Life Course SOC 308 Professor...

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