Confronting Social Problems: Developing an Action Plan

Confronting Social Problems: Developing an Action Plan

In this exercise, you will develop a plan to fulfill the two core commitments of sociology by researching and addressing a social problem. Be sure to come up with a doable plan.

For example, if you are interested in tackling the social problem of hunger, you might not be able to feed every hungry person in the world, but you could conduct a survey to determine if there is a need for a food pantry for students and/or employees on campus (and if there is a need, come up with and carry out a plan to convince people in power on your campus).

Likewise, you might not be able to buy textbooks for every student on campus who has trouble paying for them, but you could organize a campaign encouraging all professors to put a desk copy (or two) on reserve in the library. You get the idea.


Select a social problem, perhaps the one you mentioned in your Introduce Yourself discussion thread.

Answer the following questions in detail:

  1. What social problem are you going to tackle? Name and describe the social problem. Your description of the social problem should include citations from at least three credible sources. You must show that you understand your chosen issue before you can start trying to address it.
  2. Identify its social patterns (e.g. what social groups does the problem impact, affect, or concern; how widespread, urgent, pressing etc).
  3. How will you make an impact on this social problem within the time frame of the next five years? What is your plan of action? What will you do, when? What allies can you reach out to? 
  4. What do you hope to accomplish? Describe the impact you plan to make on the social problem.

Length: no more than one page or even less is even better!

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