sociology

noun
so·​ci·​ol·​o·​gy | \ ˌsō-sē-ˈä-lə-jē How to pronounce sociology (audio) , ˌsō-shē- \

Definition of sociology

1 : the science of society, social institutions, and social relationships specifically : the systematic study of the development, structure, interaction, and collective behavior of organized groups of human beings
2 : the scientific analysis of a social institution as a functioning whole and as it relates to the rest of society

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Other Words from sociology

sociologist \ ˌsō-​sē-​ˈä-​lə-​jist ˌsō-​shē-​ How to pronounce sociologist (audio) \ noun

Examples of sociology in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web For starters, they are often used as a prelude to more severe measures, notes Stuart Schrader, an assistant research scientist in sociology at Johns Hopkins University and author of the book Badges without Borders. Kelsey D. Atherton, Scientific American, "What “Less Lethal” Weapons Actually Do," 23 June 2020 Woods, a senior lecturer in sociology who teaches criminology at Vanderbilt University, worked as a police officer for 21 years in California. Mariah Timms, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Did Adolf Hitler defund the police in Nazi Germany?," 19 June 2020 Higher utility bills may force some people to seek shelter in government-run cooling centers or other public buildings, said Jeremiah Bohr, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. Chris Martin, BostonGlobe.com, "As heat sears US, soaring energy costs foreseen," 1 July 2020 According to University of Iowa sociology professor Bodi Vasi, without concerted effort, violence at protests can become self-perpetuating. Tyler J. Davis, USA TODAY, "What is 'kettling?' Here's a look into the usage and history of the controversial police tactic," 24 June 2020 This dynamic played out during the 1964 Mississippi Summer Project, said Kathleen Fitzgerald, a teaching assistant professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina. Harmeet Kaur, CNN, "5 reasons experts say we should be wary of labeling protesters as 'outside agitators'," 4 June 2020 Ashley Mears is an associate professor of sociology at Boston University. Ashley Mears, The Economist, "Stories of an extraordinary world The secret economics of a VIP party," 26 June 2020 Matthew Clair is a sociologist and assistant professor of sociology at Stanford University. Matthew Clair, STAT, "Unless it’s done carefully, the rise of telehealth could widen health disparities," 26 June 2020 His younger brother, Henry, majored in sociology, hungrily consuming courses on race and mass incarceration. Sydney Trent, Washington Post, "Young Asians and Latinos push their parents to acknowledge racism amid protests," 21 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sociology.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of sociology

1842, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sociology

French sociologie, from socio- + -logie -logy

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Time Traveler for sociology

Time Traveler

The first known use of sociology was in 1842

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Statistics for sociology

Last Updated

5 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sociology.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sociology. Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for sociology

sociology

noun
How to pronounce sociology (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sociology

: the study of society, social institutions, and social relationships

sociology

noun
so·​ci·​ol·​o·​gy | \ ˌsō-sē-ˈäl-ə-jē How to pronounce sociology (audio) , ˌsō-shē- How to pronounce sociology (audio) \
plural sociologies

Medical Definition of sociology

: the science of society, social institutions, and social relationships specifically : the systematic study of the development, structure, interaction, and collective behavior of organized groups of human beings

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More from Merriam-Webster on sociology

Spanish Central: Translation of sociology

Nglish: Translation of sociology for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sociology for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about sociology

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