Delta State University
SOC 101: Principles of Sociology
Fall Semester 2005

Study Questions, Week 3

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(1) What is meant by the term social structure?  Identify five elements of social structure and briefly define each.


(2) What is the difference between ascribed and achieved status?  For each of the following, state whether it is an ascribed or achieved status:

     College Freshman  Rock Star
     Female Canadian
     Teenager Catholic
     Fraternity President Millionaire

(3) Provide an example of a characteristic you possess that you think is a master status.  Explain how this status has affected your life, and why this makes it a master status.


(4) What is the difference between a status and a role?  From your own experiences, provide examples of role conflict, role strain, and role exit.


(5) Provide examples of social institutions.  What are some of the functions that social institutions play in our lives?  How might social institutions contribute to social conflict?  What is the relationship between institutions, roles and stutuses?


(6) What is meant by the term culture?  Identify four elements of culture and briefly define each.


(7) What role do symbols play in culture?  Explain the importance of symbols to language, and of language to culture.


(8) Identify different types of norms.  Are people more likely to adhere to formal or informal norms?  Explain.


(9) What is the relationship between norms and expectations?  Between norms and sanctions?


(10) What role do values play in creating culture?  What are the dominant values in U.S. society?  Among students at Delta State University?  In your family?