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UPSC - Syllabus - Sociology

Main Examination Syllabus - Subject : Sociology

Paper-I

General Sociology/Foundations of Sociology/Fundamentals of Sociology

  • Sociology-The Discipline

    Sociology as a science and as an interpretative discipline; impact of industrial and French Revolution on the emergence of sociology; sociology and its relationship with history, economics, political science, psychology and anthropology.

  • Scientific Study of Social Phenomena

    Problem of objectivity and value neutrality; issue of measurement in social science; elements of scientific method-concepts, theory and fact, hypothesis; research designs-descriptive, exploratory and experimental

  • Techniques of data collection and analysis

    Participant and quasi-participant observation; interview, questionnaire and schedule case study, sampling-size, reliability and validity, scaling techniques-social distance and Likert scale.

  • Pioneering contributions to Sociology

    • Karl Marx : Historical materialism, mode of production, alienation and class struggle.
    • Emile Durkheim : Division of labour, social fact, religion and society.
    • Max Weber : Social action, ideal types, authority, bureaucracy, protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism.
    • Talcott Parsons : Social system, pattern variables.
    • Robert K. Merton : Latent and manifest functions, anomie, conformity and deviance, reference groups.

  • Marriage and Family

    Types and forms of marriage; family-structure and function; personality and socialization; Social control; family, lineage, descent and property; changing structure of family marriage and sex roles in modern society; divorce and its implications; gender issues; role conflicts.

  • Social Stratification

    Concepts-hierarchy, inequality and stratification; theories of stratification-Marx, Davis and Moore and Melvin Tuminís critique; forms and functions; class-different conceptions of class; class-in-itself and class-for-itself; caste and class; caste as a class.

  • Social Mobility

    Types of mobility-open and closed models; intra-and inter-generational mobility; vertical and horizontal mobility; social mobility and social change.

  • Economic System

    Sociological dimensions of economic life; the impact of economic processes on the larger society; social aspects of division of labour and types of exchange; features of pre-industrial and industrial economic system; industrialisation and social change; social determinants of economic development.

  • Political System

    The nature of power-personal power, community power, power of the elite, class power, organisational power, power of the un-organised masses; authority and legitimacy; pressure groups and political parties; voting behaviour; modes of political participation-democratic and authoritarian forms.

  • Educational System

    Education and Culture; equality of educational opportunity; social aspects of mass education; problems of universalisation of primary education; role of community and state intervention in education; education as an instrument of social control and social change; education and modernisation.

  • Religion

    Origins of religious beliefs in pre-modern socieites; the sacred and the profane; social functions and dysfunctions of religion; monistic and pluralistic religion; organised and unorganised religions; semitism and antisemitism; religion, sect and cults; magic, religion and science.

  • Science & Technology

    Ethos of science; social responsibility of science; social control of science; social consequences of science and technology; technology and social change.

  • Social Movements

    Concepts of social movements; genesis of social movements; ideology and social movement; social movement and social change; types of social movements.

  • Social change and Development

    Continuity and change as fact and as value; theories of social change-Marx, Parsons and Sorokin; direted social change; social policy and social development.

Paper-II

Study of Indian Society

  • Historical Moorings of the Indian Society

    Traditional Hindu social organisation; socio-cultural dynymics through the ages; impact of Buddhism, Islam, and the West, factors in continuity and change.

  • Caste System

    Origin of the caste system; cultural and structural views about caste; mobility in caste; caste among Muslims and Christians; change and persistence of caste in modern India; issues of equality and social justice; views of Gandhi and Ambedkar on caste; caste on and Indian polity; Backward Classes Movement; Mandal Commission Report and issues of social backwardness and social justice; emergence of Dalit consciousness.

  • Class Structure

    Class structure in India, agrarian and industrial class structure; emergence ofmiddle class; emergence of classes among tribes; elite formation in India.

  • Marriage, Family and Kinship

    Marriage among different ethnic groups, its changing trends and its future; family-its structural and functional aspects-its changing forms; regional variations in kinship systems and its socio-cultural correlates; impact of legislation and socio-economic change on marriage and family; generation gap.

  • Agrarian Social Structure

    Peasant society and agrarian systems; land tenure systems-historical perspectives, social consequences of land reforms and green revolution; feudalism-semi-feudalism debates; emerging agrarian class structure; agrarian unrest.

  • Industry and Society

    Path of industrialisation, occupational diversification, trade unions and human relations; market economy and its social consequences; economic reforms liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation.

  • Political Processes

    Working of the democratic political system in a traditional society; political parties and their social base; social structural origins of political elites and their orientations; regionalism, pluralism and national unity; decentralisation of power; panchayati raj and nagarpalikas and 73rd and 74th constitutional amendments.

  • Education

    Directive Principles of State Policy and primary education; education; educational inequality and change; education and social mobility; the role of community and state intervention in education; universalisation of primary education; Total Literacy Campaigns; educational problems of disadvantages groups.

  • Religion and Society

    Size, growth and regional distribution of different religious groups; educational levels of different groups; problems of religious minorities; communal tensions; secularism; conversions; religious fundamentalism.

  • Tribal Societies

    Distinctive features of tribal communities and their geographical spread; problems of tribal communities-land alienation, poverty, indebetedness, health and nutrition, education; tribal development efforts after independence; tribal policy-isolation, assimilation and integration; issues of tribal identity.

  • Population Dynamics

    Population size, growth, composition and distribution; components of population growth; birth rate, death rate and migration; determinants and consequences of population growth; issues of age at marriage, sex ratio, infant mortality rate; population policy and family welfare programmes.

  • Dimensions of Development

    Strategy and ideology of planning; poverty, indebtedness and bonded labour; strategies of rural development-poverty alleviation programmes; environment, housing, slums, and unemployment; programmes for urban development.

  • Social Change

    Endogenous and exogenous sources of change and resistance toc hange; processes of change-sanskritisation and modernisation; agents of change-mass media, education and communication; problems of change and modernisation; structural contradictions and breakdowns.

  • Social Movements

    • Reform Movements : Arya Samaj, Satya Sadhak Samaj, Sri Narayanguru Dharma Paripalana Sabha, and Ram Krishna Mission.
    • Peasant movements-Kisan Sabha, Telengana, Naxalbari.
    • Backward Castes Movement : Self-respect Movement, backward castes mobilisation in North India.

  • Women and society

    Demographic profile of women; special problems-dowry, atrocities, discrimination; existing programmes for women and their impact. Situational analysis of children; child welfare programmes.

  • Social Problems

    Prostitution, AIDS, alcoholism, drug addiction, corruption.


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