This final paper will be the culmination of what we have accomplished during our course. Now that we have identified and clarified the nature of social problems, and examined two key organizations that address a social problem, we will give a more in depth discussion about the scope of a social problem, a major theoretical idea that can be applied to the social problem, and our own analysis of how this social problem might be better solved. A crucial part of this assignment will be in identifying one of the major theoretical perspectives we have covered this session. The major ones include the functionalist, conflict, and symbolic interaction approaches. However, as our materials note, there are other theoretical viewpoints we may also adopt if we choose. The key will be in thoroughly understanding these theoretical viewpoints, and finding the most effective one for understanding our chosen social problem of study.
Complete a 6-8 page final paper (NOT including title or reference pages) that analyzes the future impact of a social problem of your choice – note: you must use a DIFFERENT social problem from the one you used in your first assignment. In this assignment, you will cover:
1. The scope of this social problem over the last 30-50 years. (Note: you will need to use historical data to articulate the scope of this problem.)
2. Your own original analysis of how you think addressing the social problem could be improved. In this analysis, please mention what you think should be done to solve this social problem. Use your own viewpoint and voice, as a sociologist, rather than relying heavily on sources for this section.
3. Define four concepts from our readings/materials that relate to your chosen social problem and analyze how these concepts help us better understand the social problem you are discussing. Concepts include ideas such as stratification, ethnicity, sexism, and others as mentioned in our readings and materials (NOTE: these are just examples of concepts – they may NOT apply to your topic – you need to select concepts that apply to your own topic).
4. Define one sociological theory from our readings/materials that relates to your chosen social problem and analyze how this theory helps us better understand the social problem you are discussing. Sociological theories include functionalism, conflict theory, feminist theory, symbolic interactionism, and others as mentioned in our readings and materials.
Note – you may find our Sociological Theories and Concepts Toolkit to be helpful (found in Announcements).
Do not use unverifiable, secondary sites such as Wikipedia, about.com, ask.com, and similar. Use our course materials, peer-reviewed journal articles from the library, and other scholarly sources.
Your paper should utilize sound critical thought and it should include appropriate APA in-text citations and full APA references at the end.