Sociology is the systematic and scientific study of society, including patterns of social relationships, social action, and culture.
Areas studied in sociology can range from the analysis of brief contacts between anonymous individuals on the street to the study of global social processes. Numerous fields within the discipline concentrate on how and why people are organized in society, either as individuals or as members of associations, groups, and institutions. As an academic discipline, sociology is most often considered as a branch of social science.
Sociological research provides educators, planners, lawmakers, administrators, developers, business leaders, and people interested in resolving social problems and formulating public policy with rationales for the actions that they take.