Sociology Essay Tips and Sample Topics

A sociology essay presents the opportunity to understand a phenomenon and examine it critically.

Some sample essay topics are:

– The effect of urbanisation on crime rates

– The media’s influence on cultures and traditions

– Does migration lead to an irreparable void in the social fabric?

– Women’s progress in handling the dual responsibility of work and home

– The attitude of monotheistic societies towards homosexuality

– The causes and countering forces of Xenophobia

– The incidence of alcoholism among factory workers in Scotland

It would not have escaped your notice that “society” is a subject that everyone has an opinion about, it’s a frequent theme of dinner table conversations and television debates. So when writing an essay, it is very tempting to slip into the role of a commentator, to pass judgement on social phenomenon and deliver one’s verdict. However, such an approach will most likely earn you a low grade. Remember that there are two dimensions to your sociology essay:

– Theory

– Examples

Theory deals with well-established ideas relating to the subjects, such as Maslow’s idea of hierarchical needs. These lay the solid groundwork for your essay. Don’t just mention the theory, analyse it in a manner similar to a critical essay. Usually, one theory is too limited to cover the scope of your essay, and often there are many theories with differing viewpoints. Hence you must adopt an inclusive approach with a view to making the reader’s understanding of the topic more lucid. Moreover, incorporating essays imparts an objective tone to your essay, with is crucial.

Examples illustrate the applicability and context of the theories. Try to avoid giving personal examples, instead look for empirical research to support your point. You could even conduct a small study of your own if relevant data is not available. For instance, if you are writing asociology essay on whether or not gossip plays a constructive role in small groups, you could relate an example of how business school MBA alumni networks often exchange information of job vacancies, work environments, pay scales and new developments in the sector in order to help the group members extract mutual benefit.

In both these dimensions, make sure that you give all the relevant information. For instance, “The incidence of alcoholism among workers in Scotland has fallen over the past few years due to the emergence of alternate recreation activities and government programmes” is a clearly inadequate statement for various reasons:

– “Past few years” is too vague, “since 1985” is more specific

– The extent of this fall in alcoholism or at least a reference to whether it was marginal or steep should be made

– We are not told the basis of the claim that recreation and government programs are the cause of decline in alcoholism. The essay should clearly mention the study that supports this point

Sociology essays need not have a conclusive answer to an issue. An informed analysis is adequate.

We also have a post on sociology coursework.

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