Education from a Global Perspective (04:58)
Historically, education was only for the elite who received a classic education from private tutors; education shifted to university attendance. Every society has an education system but not all systems are equal; literacy rates are a good proxy measure.
Education from a U.S. Perspective (05:14)
Historically, education was for the elite who received education from tutors until the founding of universities; compulsory education began in the early 1900s. In the 1960s, the government provided financial aid and encouraged open admissions policies. The number of high school and college graduates has increased in the last 40 years.
Education from a Theoretical Perspective (04:30)
The manifest functions of the sociocultural system include: basic skills, cultural values, and civic knowledge; social effects are a latent function. Sociologists are concerned about inequality in the education system.
Problems in Education (04:11)
Sociologists' main concern with the education system is that it not all students receive the same quality of education. Other concerns include disparities between public and private education, and inequality among public schools.
Religion in the U.S. (04:55)
Typically, the more wealthy a country is, the less religious the population; the U.S. is far more religious than other comparable countries. From a sociological perspective, religion promotes solidarity, provides a sense of identity, and affects social change. The U.S. has a diverse religious population that varies by geographic region.
Perspectives on Religion (04:53)
Émile Durkheim believed religion was important because people need to be involved in rituals; it facilitates a sense of the sacred. Max Weber argued that capitalist values are rooted in Protestantism. Karl Marx believed "religion is the opiate of the masses."
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