Sociological Theories in Practice

Sociological Theories in Practice

Editorial Note:

This article is being published on behalf of Applied Worldwide's student essay competition. Students were prompted to respond to the question, "Why is sociology important?" We have awarded 16 finalists from all over the world, and will publish these essays over the next several weeks. This essay was written by Marvis Dike Royce, a student at the University of Lagos, Akoka (UNILAG) in Nigeria. This essay received a third place award. We had a really great turnout and would like to thank everyone who submitted an essay. We received a wide variety of creative interpretations and responses, so browse our essay directory!

Marvis Dike Royce

Marvis Dike Royce, University of Lagos, Akoka (UNILAG)

The essence of this essay is to depict the importance of sociology. In this paper, I provide a concise universal introduction into the study of sociology briefly before I project the potency of sociology in its actual state by focusing the spotlight on its practices and methods of scientific inquiries, afterwards, I briefly explained the transformative power of sociology through social engineering.

As a scientific field of study, sociology helps us understand the fundamental workings and structure of our society, alongside its components and elements through investigative, analytical, and categorisation methods.

Sociology helps us identify the presence of social institutions and its various contributions to the history, current status and advancement of society. Social institutions, as recognised by sociology, are a distinctive but complex subsystem of a society that influences, regulates and detects social actions (Berger 1963: 21). The family as a social institution is primary responsible for the socialisation of new members of the society (newborn human babies). It shapes our thoughts, ideas, belief systems, language use and meaning about partnerships with sex, child-rearing, dressing as well as other aspects of our lives. The institutions of economy and education impact social status, wealth, inequalities and prestige amongst individuals. The aforementioned institutions are a few of the total existing social institutions which also include the government and media.

Sociology introduces in itself multiple theories and perspectives of studying our social arrangements, structures and constructions. Various research methods are employed when studying social actions or phenomena. Thus, providing different views to same subject for a holistic understanding. Major perspectives and theories include, but are not limited to, structural functionalism, conflict perspective, post-modernism and interactionism. These perspectives could study social issues, actions, events and interactions from the most fundamental points to the most complex stages, while employing quantitative and qualitative research methods.

What is Sociology?

Sociology studies social systems as a network of relationships bounding a coherent whole that exists between individuals, groups and institutions or individual actions are reflections of our society's value system.

Social Engineering

Applied sociologists are, particularly, the fore-bearers of social engineering. They measure and test the extent of impacts of governmental policies, social actions, and institutions. They possess special decision-making abilities. The ability to logically plan and redesign societies both large and small scale depends heavily on the availability of large data base from social information inclination. Sociology facilitates the course of social engineering by serving as a depot for scientific knowledge social scientists

Planning, Distribution and Decision- making

Take for instance the institution of the economy. Sociology poses its relevance to the decision-making process of actualizing an organisation's core objectives through managers, whose views and insights are based heavily on sociological perspectives for the understanding of social processes, reasons for target audience demographics, psychographics, and lifestyle. All these amount directly to the formulation of expectations concerning the behaviour of individuals and groups.

Sociology in Industries

In a globalised world, the creation and maintenance of indigenous technology applications and solutions, marketing mix and product design are very important. Sociology helps technology professionals, industry executives and managers implement regionally appealing and beneficial policies following the understanding and recognition of peculiarities across societies.

Sociology in the Medical field

Clinical sociologists of the paramedic nature provide advisory services and support to medical professionals. This information could, however, be used latently to formulate and implement informed, research-driven substance uses, rehabilitative care amongst other benefits that are relative.

Sociology in Government

Unless we are totally informed of the extent of interpersonal exchanges, interactions, social problems, conflict causes or roots of social actions, the implementation of governmental programs or laws become purely predicated on personal instinct, which is doomed to fail. Sociology is highly important in crafting research-based predictions when measuring the effect of policy implementations pre and post application for sustainability.

Barriers in Sociological Practice

The presence of traditional and publicly unrelatable sociological practices

  • Near to no direct technology fusion or integration specifically for the practices of sociological research.

  • Influence of employers on sociological research works of applied sociologist

  • The use of sociologese when relating to lay public

  • Scant practices in public sociology


Sociology is important in every angle there is to it. Yet, if it fails to transition with time age and space, then it will lose its status of relevance specifically in developing countries. There must be a form of professional rebranding of sociology professionals and a reorientation for existing university students on prospects and opportunities available in the field of sociology.

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