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What Are the Similarities Between Micro & Macro Sociology?

Updated April 17, 2017

Sociology is the social science that seeks to understand the complexities of human society. You can use two of its subdisciplines, macro sociology and micro sociology, to gain a deeper understanding of social institutions, rituals and cultural differences between social groups. Macro sociology looks at society from a large-scale perspective while micro sociology goes into great detail to examine society at the individual, behavioural level. While you may think the two disciplines are very different, they actually have many elements in common.

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Focus

Macro and micro sociology focus exclusively on human societies and understanding them at various levels and through their participation in different social constructs. The social world of animals, for example, isn't a part of macro or micro sociology.

Topics

In macro sociology, the focus of your studies may include topics of war, poverty or even the effects of pollution. By studying these broad social events, you will be able to apply them later to the smaller individual elements of society that is the focus of micro sociology, such as the role of women in war, or how poverty affects the elderly.

Groups

Macro and micro sociology are similar in their study of individuals, families and other similar social groups. With micro sociology, you'll take a more detailed look at the behaviours of the people in those groups, while in macro sociology you will observe how these collective groups relate to society as a whole.

Uses

Although in macro sociology you'll use a broad approach to study societies, you can apply all of what you learn to understand facets of micro sociology. The two disciplines work together, informing and pushing the study of human society. Micro sociologists can later disseminate a topic for deeper examination that macro sociology covers.

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About the Author

Carolina Arana has been writing professionally since 2003. She has been published online and in "Cypress Dome," as well as academic research conducted for the University of Central Florida and various private companies such as Leading and Learning Inc. Arana is a graduate of the University of Central Florida with a bachelor's degree in English and a minor in biology.

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