Unit I Scholarly Activity
SOC 1010, Introduction to Sociology
Columbia Southern University
Unit 1 Scholarly Activity
From the unit one study guide I read that Sociological imagination encourages you to look outside yourself and to recognize that the groups and institutions you belong to in society shape who you are, what you think, and how you feel (CSU, 2017). This is an interesting concept that I will use to look at the reason I chose to pursue a degree with Columbia Southern University (CSU). At first, I was wondering how to even accomplish this task. After doing some reading and learning about the three sociological perspectives (Functionalist, Conflict, and Interactionist) it became a little clearer how I should complete this task. The functionalist view sees society as a living organism with its parts working together for the good of the whole while the conflict view sees society as a struggle over resources. Those that control resources have greater power and finally the interactionist view believes society is a product of everyday interactions that construct social order, (Witt, 2016). They were several questions I had to ask myself to come to a decision on which one I believe was the most relevant in my decision to pursue a degree at Columbia Southern University. After looking at all of them I have to say that each one had at least some small effect on the choices that I have made. I would say that the pressures to fit into society and be a contributing member to its betterment (functionalist view) played a part. I enjoy training and teaching others, to due this I must complete my degree then continue my education and complete a master’s degree. A higher education affords me a better paying career after my military days are complete which feeds into the views of the conflict perspective of power through resources. Finally, the reason I ended up choosing both my degree and CSU was due to my daily interactions with co-workers that raved about their programs. The interactionist perspective was the most relevant in my mind due to the fact that had it not been for those interactions shaping my decision I probably wouldn’t be attending CSU for my degree.
For this part of my essay I am channeling my inner sociological researcher studying academic dishonesty at Columbia Southern University. The method I would use for this research would be surveys. I chose this method because it can be completed in multiple formats which is a great advantage if I am completing this task alone. The formats I would use would be face-to-face interviews and emailing out questionnaires in a hope to reach wider demographic. An advantage to the face-to-face is an interviewer can obtain a higher response rate because people find it more difficult to turn down a personal request for an interview than to throw away a written questionnaire, (Witt, 2016). One of the disadvantages to completing surveys is the time it would take to set-up and complete enough interviews to have a good data pool. I am hoping that doubling up on two types of survey would yield more results. In order to have a good survey you need to ask good questions. I wouldn’t want to ask too many questions so I would stick to initially asking only two questions in the face-to-face interview and probe deeper depending on subject responses. This is another advantage to the face-to-face where it could be a disadvantage in the emailed questionnaire. For the emailed questionnaire I would have the first two questions and the subject responses would trigger follow-up questions. The first question I would ask is, do you know or understand what academic dishonesty is? The second question I would ask is, have you ever participated in academic dishonesty or know of someone that has? I would use the data gained from these surveys to calculate the number of students that one actually knows what academic dishonesty is and two the number of students that willingly commit academic dishonesty. I would hopefully use this information to improve the way students perceive this issue.