Chapter summary imageCurriculum taught in school classrooms that is unrelated to academic learning, such as sharing and morals, is called hidden curriculum.

How do Societies Pass on Information?

through education and religion.

How Does Religion Affect Society?


religion binds people together through ritual and tradition.

Conflict Theory:

religion legitimizes social inequalities; for example, the practice of owning slaves was accepted in part because some churches condoned the practice.

Symbolic Interactionism:

everything in the world can be interpreted as profane or sacred, but the setting influences the reverence of objects or acts.

What Social Policies Help Children Get a Better Education?

school voucher policies that allow low-income parents to select a participating school to send their child.



  • religion strengthens norms and values
  • rituals unite the group when they celebrate or perform actions
  • created social stability that supports governmental authority
  • acts as a means of social control by influencing a person’s actionsin the best interest of everyone

Conflict Theory

  • religion strengthens the inequalities of social classes
  • dogma created to benefit the wealthy and condemn the poor
  • Marx: religion promotes capitalism because churches often support the idea that the wealthy deserve privileges that the poor do not effectiveness of the religious experience
  • religion promotes obedience and legitimizes governments that are not in the best interest of everyone

Symbolic Interactionism

  • everything is either sacred or profane
  • system of beliefs define meaning and morals to specific actions
  • organization that supports belief system ensures continuation and effectiveness of the religious experience

Key Terms


is the formal system in which society passes its information and values from one generation to the next.

Teacher Expectancy

effectis the impact of a teacher’s expectations on a student’s performance.

Grade Inflation

is the trend of assigning higher grades than previously assigned to students for completing the same work.

Human Capital

is a person’s combination of skills, knowledge, traits, and personal attributes.


is an emphasis on educational degrees in assessing skills and knowledge.


is a unified system of beliefs and practices, relative to sacred things, that is to say, things set apart and forbidden—beliefs and practices which unite into one single moral community called a Church, all those who adhere to them.


is the belief in a god or gods.


is the belief that there is only one god.


is the belief in multiple gods and demigods.

Philosophies of Life

are ways of life that focus on a set of ethical, moral, or philosophical principles.


is the practice of honoring a totem or a sacred object.

Simple Supernaturalism

is the belief in a variety of supernatural forces that affect and influence people’s lives.


is the belief that recognizes that animate spirits live in natural objects and operate in the world.


are new religious movements led by charismatic leaders with few followers.


are religious groups that have enough members to sustain themselves and go against society’s norm.


is a large, highly organized group of believers.


is a state religion that is formed when government and religion both work together to shape society.


means connected to God or dedicated to a religious purpose.


means related or devoted to that which is not sacred or biblical.


are established patterns of behavior closely associated with experience of the sacred.


is the overall decline in the importance and power of religion in people’s lives.

Civil Religion

is a binding force that holds society together through political and social issues.


is marriage between people of different religions.


is a recent trend that stretches religious boundaries.

System of Beliefs

relates sacred objects to religious rituals, and defines and protects the sacred from the profane.

Organization of Believers

is a group that ensures the prosperity and effectiveness of the religious experience.


1. What is the hidden curriculum?

2. How can a country’s socioeconomic status affect education?

3. What factors affect educational attainment?

4. How do religions become integrated into society?

5. How can religion be related to capitalism?

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