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Card-index course

Introduction to Sociology

Sociologie générale B

Responsible Faculty: Faculty of Social and Political Sciences (SSP)

Teacher(s): Gaële Goastellec
Lecturer(s): -

Validity: 2012 -> 2012

No timetable defined.


2 hours per week
56 hours per year

Teaching language(s): French
Public: Yes
Credits: 0


This introductory course to sociology aims to provide a first understanding of the founding principles of the discipline and the theoretical and methodological issues that it raises. It provides a useful background to the different sociological perspectives that can be studied at a later stage in the degree program. The course has four aims:
To present the main analytical frameworks used in sociological research ;
To learn about the different methodological tools used in the discipline and to analyse their relative strenghts and limits;
To discover some of the empirical results of sociologicial studies - past and present - in different thematic fields ;
To study and understand some of the key sociological concepts.


The course will start with some introductory sessions aimed at defining and describing the field of sociology. We will then insist on the plurality of theoretical and methodological appraoches that characterise contemporary sociology. The course will enable students to familiarise themselves with the principal frameworks of the discipline - functionalism, structuralism, individualism and ethnomethodology - through the study of concrete sociological research in a wide range of thematic areas (e.g. the family, education, work, urban life and migration) and the critical analysis of their results.


A 4 hour written examination.


Lectures obligatoires:

DELAS Jean-Pierre et Bruno MILLY (2005), Histoire des pensées sociologiques, Paris, Armand Colin (2ème édition)
DURAND Jean-Pierre et Robert WEIL (dir.) (2006), Sociologie contemporaine, Paris, Vigot (3ème édition)
MOLENAT, Xavier (coord.) (2009) La sociologie: Histoire, idées, courants, Auxerre, Sciences Humaines éditions.


MASSON, Philippe (2008) Faire de la sociologie: Les grandes enquêtes françaises depuis 1945, Paris, La Découverte
PAUGAM, Serge (2008) La Pratique de la sociologie, Paris, Presses universitaires de France.

Programme requirements


Additional information


Canton de Vaud
Swiss University
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