What differentiates sociology from other social sciences?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Sociology is the study of the behavior of people as members of society.  It studies the relationship that exists between human beings and their societies.  People influence their societies and their societies influence them.  Sociology studies this interaction.  Sociologists study things like the way that being members of a specific group (women, for example) influences peoples lives.  It studies how society helps to cause delinquency and how that delinquency impacts society.

The other social sciences study other aspects of human behavior.  For example, psychology studies the inner workings of the minds of human beings.  It looks at how we react, in our own minds, to various outside stimuli.   Economics looks at human behaviors, but only in the context of the way that they choose to use their scarce resources.  Political science looks at the structures that people form to govern themselves and the ways in which they interact with those structures.

Sociology is different from the other social sciences then, in that it is the only one that is specially concerned with the interaction between human beings and their societies.

thetall eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Sociology is the scientific study of human relationships, interaction, culture, and institutions. It, therefore, investigates the structures within societies and how people interact with these structures. Sociology differs from other social sciences in that it is more general and covers human interaction from a broad dimension whereas the other social sciences are specific. In fact, all other social sciences are said to have sprung from sociology.

As indicated, sociology is the scientific study of human relationships, their interactions, and institutions. Psychology, on the other hand, is the scientific study of the mind and mental processes. History, another social science, is the study of the occurrence of past events. Even though sociology and political science are dependent on each other, political science is the scientific study of the state and government. In regards to the study of economics, sociology deals with human interactions, while economics deals with human behaviors in relation to the resources available and their alternative uses.

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smritiv07 | Student


In simple words sociology means study of society. Sociology studies human institutions, human relations, culture and all aspects that are linked with society which brings individuals together.

We study many other forms of social sciences and there is closed relationship between all social sciences. They deal with the forms and contents of human interaction, society and social environments. Sociology understands human social life by taking help from other social sciences such as History, Economics, Anthropology, Political science, Psychology.

There is a difference between sociology and other sciences :

Sociology and Psychology:

Sociology study all aspects of man like social relationships, social institutions etc. The science of human mind and mental process is Psychology and thus psychology is known as special science whereas sociology is known as general science. This is the basic difference between sociology and psychology. Another important difference is the sociology deals with group behavior ans psychology deals with individual behavior.

Sociology and History:

History deals with the past of mankind whereas sociology studies the present status and complexities of the society. The main difference between these two social sciences is that sociological facts can be retested which is not possible with historical facts. This means test and re test is possible for facts which are generalized by sociologist and the same is not possible in history. History is a descriptive science whereas sociology is analytical and interpretive science.

Sociology and Political Science:

Political science studies the state, political activities and government whereas sociology is mainly and only concerned with studies of society. Sociology is view point of social animal and political science is view point of a political animal. The important distinction between both is that sociology studies both conscious and unconscious activities of human being and political science studies only conscious activities of human being. 

Sociology and Economics:

Economics studies economic institutions and economic activities of human being. Economics is concrete in nature meaning its variables are easy to measure, on the other hand sociology is abstract in nature that is its variables are difficult to measure. 

There is a common difference between sociology and all other forms of social sciences that sociology is young science whereas all others are age old science.


























nandusocio | Student
sociology study to whole society and their organizations, culture economy, politics but other social sciences study a small part of society.