Sociology can either be viewed as a natural science or a social science. These two viewpoints form two distinct approaches to Sociology.
|Positivism - Sociology is objective, as there
are "truths" behind every society. Therefore,
methods similar to natural sciences should
be used. Prefers quantitative data.
|Interpretivism - Sociology is subjective, as the
society is formed by people's actions.
Therefore, methods similar to social sciences
should be used. Prefers qualitative data.
These viewpoints are not factions; modern sociologists tend to combine methods from both approaches.