Chapter 1 Sociology: An Introduction Key Terms sociological imagination The ability to see how social conditions affect our lives. social conditions The realities of the life we create together as social beings. sociology The scientific study of human societies and human behavior in the groups that make up a society. micro-level sociology An approach to the study of society that focuses on patterns of social interaction at the individual level. macro-level sociology An approach to the study of society that focuses on the major structures and institutions of society. middle-level sociology An approach to the study of society that focuses on relationships between social structures and the individual. scientific method The process by which theories and explanations are constructed through repeated observation and careful description. human ecology A sociological perspective that emphasizes the relationships among social order, social disorganization, and the distribution of populations in space and time. Interactionism A sociological perspective that focus on the ways in which complex patterns of social structures and arrangements contribute to social order. conflict perspective A sociological perspective that emphasizes the role of conflict and power in society. power The ability to control the behavior of others, even against their will.