chapter  2
7 Pages

The Nature of Empirical Evidence and Explanations

In most academic institutions, sociology belongs to the category of “social science”. While the idea of “science” might bring to mind lab coats and test tubes, the term is not limited to lab research. More broadly, science refers to a system of acquiring knowledge based on a scientific method, as well as to the organized body of knowledge gained through such research. Social sciences are those academic disciplines that use some form of scientific inquiry to understand people (rather than, say, to understand galaxies or oceans or ant colonies).