Examination topics in the discipline Sociology

  1. Positivism and sociology in Auguste Comte’s system (positive method, classification of sciences, static and dynamic approach, law of three stages).
  2. Sociological system of Herbert Spencer (society as an organism, theory of social organization, typology of societies).
  3. Political sociology of Alexis de Tocqueville (democracy and aristocracy as types of society, democratic society and a “new despotism” threat).
  4. Historical materialism of Karl Marx (alienation, social classes, class structure, a concept of social development and revolution).
  5. Sociology/socjologism of Emil Durkheim (society as a sui generis fact, social facts and the rules of investigating them).
  6. The forms of social integration in Emil Durkheim sociology (theory of religion, mechanical and organic solidarity, suicide as a social fact, concept of anomy).
  7. Vilfredo Pareto’s psychological theory of society and human behaviour (logical and non-logical activities, the idea of residues and derivations, the idea of circulations of elites).
  8. Anti-positivist turn in social sciences; idea of humanistic sociology (anti-naturalism, interactionism, requirement of understanding).
  9. Georg Simmel’s idea of “formal” sociology (the concept of society, social content and form, social conflict and its functions).
  10. Max Weber’s understanding (Verstehen) sociology (the concept and types of social acting, ideal types).
  11. Authority, power, legitimisation and state in sociology of Max Weber (3 ideal types of power).
  12. New and old social movements.
  13. The waves of feminism. Main ideas of feminist theories.
  14. Max Weber’s vision and genesis of capitalism (rational activities, Protestant ethics, bureaucracy as an ideal type).
  15. Weberian concept of social structure (classes, social status, parties).
  16. Social pragmatism in American sociology (social thought of William James, John Dewey and Charles Cooley, a notion of primordial group)
  17. Symbolical interactionism of Georg H. Mead (significant gestures and symbols, the concept of mind, social concept of the self).
  18. Florian Znaniecki’s humanistic sociology (sources of sociological materials, humanistic coefficient).
  19. Functionalism as a theoretical and methodological approach of Talcott Parsons.
  20. Examples of functional theories. Robert. K. Merton’s functional analysis. Kingsley Davies’ and Wilbert Moore’s functional theory of stratification.
  21. Neo-functionalism (N. Luhmann’s concept, J. Alexander’s theory).
  22. Differences and similarities of between Ralf Dahrendorf’s “dialectic” conflict model and Lewis Coser’s “functional” conflict model .
  23. Critical theory of society (intellectual background, ideas, representatives).
  24. J. Habermas’ theory of communicative action.
  25. Utilitarian sociologies – characteristics.
  26. George Homans’ exchange behaviourism and Peter M. Blau’s structural theory of social exchange.
  27. Theory of rational choice of M. Hechter and J. Coleman.
  28. Neo-institutional approach in social sciences.
  29. Sociobiology and evolutionary psychology.
  30. Differentiation of interpretative Sociology.
  31. Common assumptions and the area of contention in symbolical interaction trends (G. Mead, H. Blumer).
  32. Methodology of grounded theory.
  33. Main assumptions of phenomenological sociology (A. Schutz).
  34. Ethnomethodology – assumptions, methodology, representatives.
  35. Pierre Boudrieu’s idea of structural constructivism.
  36. The theory of structuration.
  37. Naturalistic and anti-naturalistic approaches and their consequences for methodological orientation in sociology.
  38. Methods and techniques of social research.
  39. Functions of scholarly research in sociology.
  40. The role of empathetic introspection (inner experience) in research practice.
  41. Research conceptualisation: basic components.
  42. Opernationalisation and operational definitions.
  43. Indicators, types of indicators in sociological research. The power of indicators.
  44. Measurement. Scales of measurement, the essence of measurement.
  45. Accuracy of measurement. Selected methods of accuracy determination and reliability of -measurement tools.
  46. Application of scales in sociological research. Examples of measurement scales.
  47. Compare the interview questionnaire and the questionnaire in quantitative research.
  48. Qualitative research in sociology.
  49. Quantitive research in Sociology.
  50. Representative research: research samples, random samples, non-random samples.
  51. Experiment as a research method. (laboratory experiment and natural experiment.
  52. Content analysis and conceptual analysis.
  53. Consumption and Mcdonalization.
  54. Social diversity and inequality (sources of social inequality, social stratification, social mobility, underclass, contemporary social stratification, cognitariat, digitariat, digital gap).
  55. Poverty and social exclusion (relative and absolute poverty, official data of poverty and subjective assessment of poverty, various explanations of poverty causes, social exclusion: economic, political, social).
  56. Nation as a sociological problem (nation vs ethnic group, types of ethnic groups, national movements in Europe, ethnic conflicts, national/ethnic minorities, ethnicity in Polish sociology)
  57. Social change, social change and development and progress, collective activities, mass activities, social movements.
  58. Types of societies (traditional, industrial, postintustrial), types of modernisations, convergentions and dependencies, globalization
  59. Social trust and capital (trust and distrust, their structural and subject sources, types of social capital, advantages and disadvantages of social capital)
  60. Subject of sociological research (definitions of sociology, functions of sociology in social life, institunationalisation of sociology in scholarly discourse)
  61. Social group and social bound (definitions, types, basic components indispensable for the existence and emergence of group, internal structuralization of groups)
  62. Forms of social activity of man (behaviour, action, social interaction, social relationship).
  63. Family as a small and primordial group, contemporary transformations of family and its functions.
  64. Formal organizations: target groups, bureaucracy, pathology of formal groups.
  65. Social and cultural contexts of innovation processes.
  66. Relations of science and technology with society.
  67. Postindustrial society. Characteristics.
  68. The role of experts in political decision making. Controversies over value of the expertise. Apolitical character of technological elites – a myth or truth?
  69. The role of experts and citizens in making better (?) political decisions.
  70. Decision processes and technological policies contributing to the improvement of environmental conditions.
  71. Human costs involved in introduction of new technologies.
  72. Technology is responsible for rational and effective organization. It needs fragmentarization, specialization, speed, efficency. Should efficiency be treated as a good indicator of growth?
  73. Possibilities of controlling the development of new technologies.
  74. New technologies and contemporary alienation of employees.
  75. Technologies and the religious (spiritual) life of people.
  76. Technological determinism.
  77. Opposition to the GMO and vaccination movements.
  78. Food problem of world and GMO technology.
  79. Technology and everyday life: the impact of mobile phones on social relations.
  80. New technologies and a risk involved in using gadgets e.g.  mobile phones, microwaves.
  81. Sustainable development (characteristics, responsible actors).
  82. Deliberative democracy and the solution of problems related to environmental justice.
  83. Electric car – a fashion or necessity.
  84. Discrimination and nationalism in science.
  85. The role of affirmative programmes in the recruitment procedures for university studies – the case of Western and Polish societies.
  86. Evolution of public mission of the university.
  87. Business and science. Commercial aspects of education: pro and con.
  88. Democracy and free/independent media.
  89. Internet as an independent(?) medium.
  90. Local media and social involvement.
  91. Media and popularisation and understanding of science. Counteraction to fake news.
  92. Trust to expert knowledge in presentation of scientific and technological problem.
  93. Copyright and open access to knowledge. Access to “free software”.
  94. How to define privacy?
  95. Privacy of data about people collected in the Internet surfing. Security, legal protection, purchase of data.
  96. Privacy related to private companies vs. privacy of state agencies.
  97. Car traffic in cities (decision dilemmas of local authorities, conflicts of municipal space users, ecological aspects)
  98. Sustainable life in cities (decisions of development, the role of citizens in decision-making processes, social negotiations)
  99. Public security.
  100. The crucial problems of contemporary societies