Social And Behavioral Sciences

Definition of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Imagine you’re trying to solve a big jigsaw puzzle that shows how people think, act, and live together. The Social and Behavioral Sciences are like that puzzle. They help us figure out why people do what they do and how all of us fit together in this world. First, let’s break it down into two simple definitions:

Definition 1: Social and Behavioral Sciences are a bit like detectives investigating human life. They look at the clues left by people’s actions, thoughts, and feelings. These detectives try to understand how and why we make friends, work together, and build societies.

Definition 2: Think of Social and Behavioral Sciences as a map for exploring the great big world of human interactions. They guide us through the different ways people live and work, just like a map shows you all the roads and landmarks in a city.

Examples of Social and Behavioral Sciences

  • Psychology: The study of the human mind and behavior. Why it’s a social science: It helps us figure out things like why we get scared, what makes us happy, and how we learn new information.
  • Sociology: The study of society, social institutions, and social relationships. Why it’s a social science: It looks at how people work together in groups, like families, schools, and workplaces. Sociology tries to understand why groups behave the way they do.
  • Anthropology: The study of human cultures, traditions, and evolutionary aspects. Why it’s a social science: It’s like going on a treasure hunt through time to learn about ancient civilizations and how different cultures live around the world today.
  • Economics: The study of the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. Why it’s a social science: Economics examines how we make, buy, and sell things, and how our choices can affect everybody from our next-door neighbor to someone living across the globe.
  • Political Science: The study of politics, government systems, and political behavior. Why it’s a social science: This field looks at how people govern themselves, make laws, and how these laws affect the people in a country or city.

Why Are Social and Behavioral Sciences Important?

Think about a world where no one knows why wars start, how businesses grow, or what makes communities happy. The Social and Behavioral Sciences help prevent that world. They’re like the instruction manual that helps us understand the rules of living together, and they give us ideas on how to make those rules better.

Origin of Social and Behavioral Sciences

A long time ago, during the Age of Enlightenment, smart thinkers began to look for new ways to understand the world, rather than just accepting what was always believed. They discussed groundbreaking ideas about people’s rights and freedom, which started the ball rolling for what we call Social and Behavioral Sciences today.

Controversies in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Just like in any superhero movie, there are tough battles in Social and Behavioral Sciences as well. One debate is about whether our choices are really our own or if society controls them. There’s also a bit of a tug-of-war between people who love numbers and data, and folks who prefer stories and personal experiences when studying human life. Plus, with all the technology collecting info about us, some folks worry about how that might affect our privacy.

Understanding Social and Behavioral Sciences: A How-To Guide

If you’re looking to become a young social scientist, here’s a cool set of steps you can follow to start your adventure:

  1. Grab some beginner-friendly reading materials that cover lots of topics so you can see the whole picture.
  2. Then, dig deeper into the subjects that catch your eye—like psychology if you’re into understanding thoughts and emotions, or sociology if you think groups of people are cool.
  3. Test out different kinds of research by reading case studies for specific stories or looking at surveys and statistics for the big picture.
  4. Join a class, online or in-person, to learn more in an organized way, where you can also chat about your ideas.
  5. Keep that curiosity buzzing and ask lots of “why” and “how” questions, and look for answers from trusted places.

Each subject in Social and Behavioral Sciences has its special viewpoint but they all share one mission: to crack the code on why human beings act the way we do in their communities.

The Role of Philosophy in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Ever asked yourself, “What’s the point of it all?” Well, philosophy is all about those big questions on life, right and wrong, and what’s really true. Social and Behavioral Sciences use those questions as tools to dive deeper and come up with better theories about human nature and society.

Related Topics

  • Cultural Studies: This field looks at how culture shapes our lives. It’s related because it also uses stories and symbols within societies to understand people’s behavior.
  • Public Health: Public Health works to keep communities healthy and safe. It’s related because to do that well, you need to know how societies work and what influences people’s health choices.
  • Environmental Studies: This area explores how people interact with the environment. It’s connected to Social and Behavioral Sciences because our social practices and behaviors have a big impact on nature.
  • Communication Studies: This topic focuses on how we share information through language, media, and symbols. It relates because communication is a huge part of what shapes society and our behaviors in it.
  • Neuroscience: Neuroscience digs into how our brains function, connecting it to Social and Behavioral Sciences because our brain activity is linked with our behavior and how we socialize.


The journey through the Social and Behavioral Sciences is a thrilling and important one. Just like superheroes, these subjects help us understand the strengths and weaknesses of our world. By studying how we think, act, and live together, Social and Behavioral Sciences give us amazing insights into our daily lives, help solve big problems, and make sure we keep growing smarter and kinder as a society. Despite their challenges, these subjects keep changing and helping us create a better understanding of our world and the human adventure.