Social Psychology vs. Sociology: What's the Difference?

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Key Difference

The difference between social psychology and sociology is that social psychology is the study of how people behave in public whereas sociology is the study of critical issues of society.

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Social Psychology vs.Sociology

Many people do not understand the difference between social psychology and sociology because they seem to be the same terms. But they are not identical; there is a lot of difference between social psychology and sociology.  The difference between social psychology and sociology is that social psychology is the study of how people behave in public whereas sociology is the study of critical issues of society.  People react on situation differently, and review of these reactions is known as social psychology. Social psychology is the branch of sociology, that’s why sociology has the more significant scope because it is the study of society.  Society is not a simple thing to study; culture is a huge thing that covers everything. There are many problems in our community, and an expert in sociology deals with these problems. The social psychologist works typically in consulting firms, schools, privates companies, teaching at the hospital.

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Sociology is the study of society, that how human affect the community and how relationships are formed in society. Society is full of different actions and reactions, as it is said that every effort has an equal and opposite reaction that is soo true. Sociology is very important for human because it helps us to know what society links and relationships are whereas if we talk about social psychology, it is a study of human and his mind that works for the society. Social psychology and sociology and linked in many ways but they are different.  Sociology is the study of culture, and social psychology is the study of a single person in the community.

Comparison Chart

BasisSocial Psychology Sociology 
MeaningSocial psychology is the study of how people behave in publicSociology is the study of critical issues of society.
Main focus Social psychologist have a primary focus on the human mindSociologist have the main focus on society and its problem
WorkingSocial psychology work from human to society.Sociology work from society to human.
AreaThe working area of social psychologist is counselling firms and schools, universities.The working area of the sociologist is Human resource offices.
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What is Social Psychology?

Social psychology is the branch of sociology; Social psychology is the study of how people behave in public.  Human behaves differently on various days and events.  In this study, social psychologist studies how people thinks and acts. No person is similar to other, not in respect of looks but in the way they work. Social Psychology is the study of how people think and behaves. There are many topics of social psychology following are some topics of social psychology:

Prejudice, Discrimination, and Diversity:

  • Racism and Other Race-Related Issues
  • Sexism, Gender Discrimination, and Feminism
  • Antisemitism and Holocaust Information
  • Heterosexism/Homophobia
  • Antifat Prejudice
  • Disability and Discrimination
  • Diversity and Multiculturalism
  • Prejudice Reduction
  • Civil Rights
  • Affirmative Action

The Psychology of Gender:

  • Women’s Studies and Resources
  • Men’s Studies and Resources
  • Lesbian, Bisexual, and Gay Resources
  • Other Gender Resources

Cultural Links:

  • Cultural Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Other Sites Focusing on Culture

Social Influence:

  • Attitudes and Social Cognition
  • Persuasion and Propaganda
  • Marketing and Selling
  • Social Marketing
  • Research Centers on Social Marketing
  • Advertising
  • Cults and Social Control
  • Social Influence Counter-Measures

Interpersonal Relations:

 Romance and Attraction

  • Matchmaking and Personal Ads
  • Social Networking
  • Sexuality and Sex Research
  • Divorce
  • Family Relations
  • Human-Animal Relations
  • Nonverbal Communication

Group Behavior:

  • Group Dynamics
  • Leadership Studies
  • Leadership Publications

Violence, Conflict Resolution, and Peace:

  • Violence and Aggression:
    • General Resources
    • Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence
  • International Conflict
  • Negotiation
  • Peace and Conflict Resolution

Prosocial Behavior:

  • Helping, Giving, and Volunteerism:
    • Philanthropy
    • Social Entrepreneurship and Micro-Loans
    • Other Sites on Helping

Social Activism:

  • General Resources
  • Nonprofit Organizations
  • Voting and Elections in the U.S.
  • Voting and Elections Outside the U.S

Disciplines Related to Social Psychology:

  • Personality Psychology
  • Industrial-Organizational Psychology
  • Health Psychology
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Psychology and Law
  • Forensic Psychology
  • Environmental Psychology
  • Consumer Psychology
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Sociology
  • Social Work

What is Sociology?

Sociology is the study of critical issues of society.  Sociology is the study of how human affect the community. Studies like the study of crime, the study of religion, the study of faith, race system and many more related to culture are known as sociology. Everything that is going around in the society comes under the field of sociology. Sociology is an exciting field. Following are main social issues that a sociologist deals with

  • Antisocial behaviour
  • Drug abuse
  • Prostitution
  • Economic Deprivation
  • Unemployment
  • Sexual abuse
    • Rape
    • Early pregnancy
  • Animal abuse

Key Differences :

  1. Social psychology is the study of how people behave in public whereas sociology is the study of critical issues of society.
  2. Social psychologist have the main focus on the human mind whereas Sociologist have the main focus on society and its problem
  3. Social psychology work from human to society whereas Sociology work from society to human.
  4. The working area of social psychologist is counselling firms and schools, universities whereas the working area of the sociologist is Human resource offices.

Conclusion

Social psychology and sociology both are different terms, and in this article above we see the clear difference between social psychology and sociology.

Explanatory Video