Rocket Science Question


The main point of this paper was for YOU to analyze YOURSELF on your chosen social view/perspective, while using socialization, looking glass self, role taking, and the generalized other.
You needed to use first person language in the application sections. ALL parts of the social concepts had to be summarized and then applied to YOUR social view/perspective.
That is, how do those 4 social concepts explain why you think the way you do on this topic?
Some vital parts of the concepts were NOT summarized/discussed or applied at times.
Use simple and basic examples when explaining concepts to the reader.

Purpose of Assignment: Why read and learn about these sociological theories if we can’t use them or see them in contemporary society. This assignment is designed for you to implement/apply these theories to a social institution found in current society. Another purpose of this assignment is critical thinking. This assignment is designed for you to put on your thinking cap and do some good old fashioned critical thinking. It is important that you walk away from this term knowing what the big 3 theories are and how to apply them to a social institution.

Instructions: You will be applying functionalism, conflict theory and symbolic interactionism to a social institution found in contemporary society. What do I mean? This paper must mention/analyze a social institution of some sort: a government agency, a health institution, an educational institution, sports institution, law institution or even the institution of marriage or religion could be possibilities for you. This may be more difficult than you think, you will need to get creative and do some critical thinking in your application of each theory/concept to that particular institution.

Please refer to the critical thinking paper #2 rubric/template for a more detailed description & format, below is a vague outline.

  • Introduction: Warm me up to the paper. That is, I should know what your paper is about after I read your introduction (3 points).
  • Summarize/tell me about your chosen social institution (3 points)
  • Summarize functionalism (3 points)
  • Apply functionalism to your social institution (4 points)
  • Summarize conflict theory (3 points)
  • Apply conflict theory to your social institution (4 points)
  • Summarize symbolic interactionism (3 points)
  • Apply symbolic interactionism to your social institution (4 points)
  • Conclusion (3 points)

Format: Use APA formatting.

Paper double spaced, white paper, and black ink, 1 inch margins.

Please have a cover page and work cited page at the end.

Plagiarism: Any idea/thought that is NOT yours, you must give credit to. Cite within the regulations of APA.

The total paper is worth 30 points.

Finally, if you have any questions…ask me, do NOT be shy please!!!


Critical Thinking Writing Assignment 2

Critical Thinking Writing Assignment 2

Criteria Ratings Pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeIntroduction

3 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning Outcomesocial institution summary

3 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeSummary paragraph functionalism

3 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeApplication paragraph functionalism

4 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeSummary of conflict theory

3 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeApplication of conflict theory

4 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeSummary of symbolic interactionism

3 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeApplication of symbolic interactionism

4 pts

This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeConclusion

3 pts

Total Points: 30

Example for Critical Thinking Paper #2 (Please read, this will help)

Big 3 theoretical perspectives employed/used in sociology (summary of main points)

Symbolic interactionism

***Look at my writings in bold, for my topic I am choosing a college/university as my social institution, this is an example of how you would apply all the major aspects of the theories to the social institution of education*** (the major theoretical point is in regular print and the example is below it in bold)

-micro analysis (this theory explores the individual, not a group) Meaning, it explores how the individual interacts with a group, social institution and/or society at large

Here, we are looking at the individual (the student) and how he/she interacts and behaves within the larger institution, in this case, an educational institution

-it is a combination of psychology & sociology, therefore it is deemed a social psychological perspective

We would be analyzing how the student acts socially and how this person has control over the educational institution in a psychological aspect. Meaning they control themselves simply.

-you control you, NOT society. Meaning social pressure/norms do NOT control you

Unlike functionalists, a symbolic interactionist suggests that social norms and social standards do NOT control your social behavior. Even though there are social norms that exist in a given educational institution, they say at the end of the day, you decide what you want to do with your social behavior. So, a teacher or professor may say that a paper is due on a certain day and he/she is putting pressure on you to turn it in…but you can still decide to NOT do the paper…for example, how would I be able to force you to write a paper? I can’t.

-you act towards society based on how you (arbitrarily) define it

This is simple. If you define going to college as unpleasant, boring, something that you have to do…you may NOT do that well. You will not be paying attention, skipping class, etc.

But, if you define going to college as exciting and interesting…this will change your social behaviors. With this definition, you most likely won’t skip class, you will be paying attention in class and you will be active in class.

So, in sum, how you define going to college will predict your social behaviors while in that social institution.


-macro analysis (meaning this theory analyzes groups and aggregates)

Now we are looking at educational institutions in the “big picture” so to speak (macro). How do other social institutions interact with educational ones? Think about it, medical schools and hospitals totally interact with each other. Law schools and law firms interact with each other.

-society controls you. Meaning social pressure and norms control you essentially

This could NOT be more opposite of symbolic interactionism. Now, a functionalist suggests that yes, social pressure is real and society and social institutions control you more than you think. Think about it, many people attend college because they feel social pressure to have a “good” career, make a certain amount of money (economic pressure), take care of their family, etc.

-everything plays a function (this is the social puzzle aspect now), each part of society and/or social institution “functions” off another piece so to speak

Everything is a social puzzle. Look at MCC. There are many parts to this social puzzle. There are the professors, students, Deans, financial aid people, tutors, grounds crews, janitors, etc. Each piece has to play its part for it to function as a whole.

-there is a balance, equilibrium, and interdependence in society

This next component relates heavily to the previous one. Here we are analyzing how each piece of the social puzzle needs to be in harmony with another one. These pieces are all related to one another. If one social piece is NOT doing their job, it is going to mess up the whole system.

Conflict theory

-macro analysis (meaning this theory analyzes groups and aggregates)

This is the same as functionalism. But this is really their last similarity.

-groups are now in conflict with one another

Conflict theory is just that…social institutions are NOT working with each other but against each other. To get personal here, I feel (some) high schools these days are NOT doing their job and people are “graduating” with lower academic skills. This impacts my ability to do my job as a college prof. I feel I have to teach students things they should already know.

-there is no harmony or balance in society or a social institution

Here the professors, students, Deans, financial aid people, tutors, grounds crews, janitors, etc. are working against each other…NOT with each other. In my world the different academic departments are always fighting over funding…this would be a prime example for sure.

-groups are in conflict over valued social resources

Relating this to education, people fight over valued social resources like grades, department funding, educational equipment, students may fight over who gets a letter of rec. from a professor, etc.

valued social resources consist of such things like jobs, education, health, money, etc.

authority is a focal point of analysis, meaning people in authority are more often than NOT the cause of conflict

Conflict theorists like to analyze authority and people in authority. Sticking with the education example, a conflict theorist would analyze people in charge…like a Dean or professor. They would look at what type of authority and power they have over the institution.

Checklist for Critical Thinking Paper #2

Critical Thinking Paper #2 Checklist

Hello everyone, here is a little checklist for your second paper that is due on 2/28 @ 11:50pm.

-First of all, I want you to follow APA formatting. But, you do NOT need an abstract. Please omit the abstract. You need an APA cover page, 1 inch margins, and reference page that follows APA formatting.


Warm me up to the paper here. That is, introduce the topic of the paper. You can tell me what the paper is going to do/analyze. That is, what are you going to analyze? How are you going analyze this topic? You also need to tell me a substantive importance here. This is basically a statement telling me why it is important to explore/analyze this topic. Finally, I need to know what the paper is about. Be very direct and clear here. I should NOT have to read one word passed the introduction to know what I am about to read.

Discuss your chosen social institution

You can choose any social institution you want. Choose one you are familiar with, this will make life easy. For example, if you work in the medical field, then choose a hospital or health clinic. Here, you can tell me why this institution is important. You can tell me things you wish were better in this institution. Tell me the future of this institution if you want. You can even tell me why you want to work in this social institution. Any of those aspects are fine to discuss with me.

Summary of theories

This analytical paper is requiring you to summarize all aspects and components of the social theories. Again, the theories needed for this paper are: symbolic interactionism, functionalism, and conflict theory. Each theory has its own separate summary paragraph. Do NOT put this in one big paragraph. When you are summarizing these theories you are letting me know you know what these social theories are. So, go ahead and use the textbook, my PowerPoints, or any other source you want to help you summarize the terms. But, again, please cite within APA regulations. I will be checking this for sure.

Application of theories

You will also be applying these theories to your chosen social institution. The application of these theories is also a separate paragraph, do NOT put this in with the theory summary paragraphs. Now, this is the part of the paper where you are doing some critical thinking. Here I want you to apply all the components of the theories to your social institution. This is also telling me you understand these concepts. It is one thing to summarize a theory it is another to be able to apply them.


You need a conclusion paragraph. So, what can you put in this section? Go ahead and re-hash your main points. You can again, tell me the importance of this topic…meaning, why analyze all of this? But, it is important you give me a bottom line statement and/or take-away-message. For example, where do we go from here type of statement? This is telling the reader future research ideas.

Plagiarism: Any idea/thought that is NOT yours, you must give credit to. Cite within the regulations of APA.

Follow the below Rubric

Rubric for Critical Thinking Writing Assignment #2

Each paragraph is to be NO less than 5 sentences, each number is a separate paragraph Follow this Exact Order (30 pts. total)

1) Did he/she have an introduction paragraph? 3 points

-Did the introduction paragraph explain the paper?

-Did you give me a substantive importance statement surrounding your given social institution (why explore/analyze this social institution)?

-Was it clear and concise?

-Was it at least 5 sentences long?

2) Did he/she have a summary/discussion paragraph for their social institution? 3 points

3) Did he/she have a summary paragraph for functionalism? 3 points

-did you cover all major points of functionalism?

4) Did he/she apply all aspects of functionalism? 4 points

-did you apply all aspects of functionalism to your social institution?

5) Did he/she have a summary conflict theory? 3 points

-did he/she cover all aspects of conflict theory?

6) Did he/she apply conflict theory to their social institution? 4 points

-did he/she apply all aspects of conflict theory?

7) Did he/she have a summary paragraph for symbolic Interactionism? 3 points

-did he/she summarize all aspects of symbolic interactionism?

8) Did he/she apply all aspects of symbolic Interactionism to their social institution? 4 points

-did he/she apply all aspects of symbolic interactionism?

9) Did he/she have a conclusion paragraph? 3 points

-Rehash your main points in this paragraph

-what does all this mean?

-give me a take away message or bottom line message

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