HR Manager: the Role and Responsibilities

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HR Manager: the Role and Responsibilities



HR Manager: the Role and Responsibilities

Ice breaking questions.

Would you like to be an HR manager?

Is HR manager job prestigious in your country, in the world?

What is the role of the HR manager in the company?

What kind of characteristics should HR manager demonstrate?

Read and comprehend the text.

The following is the abstract from the Job Description of HR manager.

The Human Resources manager is directly responsible for the overall administration, coordination and evaluation of the human resource function.

A. Essential Functions:

1. Plans, organizes and controls all activities of the HR management department. Participates in developing department goals, objectives and systems.

2. Implements and annually updates compensation program; rewrites job descriptions as necessary; conducts annual salary surveys and analyzes and develops compensation package; monitors the performance evaluation program and revises as necessary.

3. Administersbenefits programs such as life, health, and dental insurance, pension plans, vacation, sick leave, leave of absence, and employee assistance.

4. Develops, recommends and implements personnel policies and procedures; prepares and maintains handbook on policies and procedures.

5. Conducts recruitment activities; conducts new-employee orientations; monitors career-pathing program, employee relations counseling, writes and places advertisements.

6. Establishes and maintains department records and reports. Participates in administrative staff meetings and attends other meetings, such as seminars.

7. Evaluates reports, decisions and results of the department and recommends new approaches, policies and procedures to improve efficiency.

B. Competencies

1. Human Resources Capacity.

2. Ethical Conduct.

3. Strategic Thinking.

4. Leadership.

5. Decision Making.

6. Financial Management.

C. Work Environment

This job operates in a professional office environment. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, filing cabinets and fax machines. See more at:

Answer the following questions.

3.1. Based on the text A. What are the essential functions of the HR manager? Try to group the activities of HR manager.

3.2. Based on the text B. What kind of knowledge and competencies are necessary for the HR manager job. Do you have these competencies? Do you plan to improve your knowledge in these fields?

3.3. Based on the text C. What are the work conditions for HR manager? Are you familiar with all of the mentioned office tools? What other office tools are useful for the HR manager?

Say if the following statements are True or False.

1. HR manager participates in developing department objectives.

2. HR manager weekly updates compensation program.

3. Dental insurance, pension plans, vacation, sick leave, leave of absence are the main responsibilities of the company’s secretary.

4. It is the job of the HR manager to introduce a new recruit to the company staff.

5. To write and place job advertisements is not the job of HR manager.

6. HR manager must have skills of strategic thinking, decision making, financial management.

7. HR manager operates in a professional office environment, actively using standard office equipment.

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

5.2. Make a list of all the verbs from abstract A in alphabetical order. Provide synonyms to the selected verbs if possible.

5.3. Complete the following table making a proper combination based on text A.


5.4. Complete the grid with active verbs from the text placing them vertically for each letter in the word administration. See example.

a d m i n i s t e r

Skill activity. Translate into English the job advertisement.

Агентство «OLO» (office labor optimisation) Хмельницкий

Зарплата - $ 450-500

Пол - мужчина/женщина

Возраст - от: 21

Образование - высшее

Опыт работы - 1-2 года

Должность - Аналитик СМИ


Требования к кандидату / информация о вакансии:

• Высшее образование;
• Опыт работы с большими объемами информации;
• Умение делать выводы и емко их излагать на словах и в тексте;
• Опыт написания аналитических текстов и обзоров;
• Навыки работы с Adobe Acrobat, MS Office, Photoshop.
Для работы необходимо иметь:
1. Собственный компьютер.
2. Высокоскоростной доступ в интернет
• Анализ больших объемов информации;
• Подготовка аналитических документов
• Проведение качественных и количественных исследований СМИ;
• Изучение зарубежного опыта в сфере анализа СМИ;
Личные качества:
• Ответственность за принимаемые решения, способность к самоорганизации;
• Психологическая устойчивость, воспитанность;
• Внимательность, аккуратность, порядочность;
• Стремление к профессиональному развитию в сфере СМИ.

• Работа в интересном, молодом и динамично развивающемся коллективе;
• Участие в проектах для крупнейших частных и государственных корпораций
• Возможности для карьерного и профессионального роста;
• График работы – свободный.


Research and creative activity.

7.1. Prepare a structured talk, monologue about the role and responsibilities of HR manager (or a secretary, a nurse, a hotel receptionist).

7.2. Prepare key information on one of the topics based on the abstract B.

7.3. Prepare a talk on compensation and benefits of the HR manager (or a secretary, a nurse, a hotel receptionist).




Recruitment Tool:

Job Description and Person Specifications

*job description - должностная инструкция, описание предлагаемой должности

*person specifications - личностная характеристика

Ice breaking questions.

What is a vacancy advertisement? Where can you find them?

Have you already studied the vacancies yourself? What positions were of interest to you?

What kind of information is placed in the job vacancy?

Read and comprehend the text.

When HR manager identifies the vacancy for the company, he uses job description and person specifications template to write a new position from scratch. A job description describes the job; a person specification describes the person needed to do the job. A person specification can, therefore, form the basis for the selection of the most suitable person to fill the job.


What is a job description?

The best thing a company can do for its personnel is to develop an informative, comprehensive, and standardized job description, which results in an accurate portrayal of job responsibilities and duties. In order for a job description to be worthwhile and effective, it must include the following components: 1) job title, 2) job summary, 3) working environment, 4) work activities, 5) performance expectations, 6) compensation and benefits, 7) job competencies.

What is person specifications?

A person specification describes the requirements a job holder needs to be able to perform the job satisfactorily. These are likely to include:

- Education and qualifications;

- Training and experience;

- Personal attributes / qualities.

How should person specifications be created?

The most common approach now used by recruiters is to use what is known as "competencies" to design the person specification. These are then classified as "essential" or "desired" to determine which are most important.

Competencies might include some or all of the following:

- Physical attributes (e.g. state of health, aged, speech)

- Attainments (e.g. highest level of education completed, relevant market experience, ability to supervise/manage)

- Aptitudes (e.g. verbal reasoning; numerical aptitude)

- Interests (social activities; sport activities)

- Personal circumstances (e.g. ability to work shifts; full or part time)


Person specifications must be prepared and used with great care. In particular, it is important to ensure that the list of essential or desired competencies does not lead to unlawful discrimination against potential employees.


Vocabulary study.

4.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

4.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.


describe 1. specifications
job 2. requirements
perform the job 3. holder
suitable 4. satisfactorily
personal 5. candidate
essential 6. attributes
person 7. competencies

4.3. Explain differences of the following words: attributes – attainments – aptitudes.

What are your own unique attributes, attainments, aptitudes?

4.4. What should be essential and desired (optional) competences for the position of e.g. a sales manager, fireman, and professor of Sociology at the university?

Unit 3

Rewards and Benefits

Ice breaking questions.

What is motivation? What are your motives in career, in life?

What rewards do students get from their studying hard at the university? Speak about your own experience.

What is the difference between material and non-material rewards? Draw examples of the first and the latter.

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

5.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.


reward 1. and benefits
salary 2. effort
put in 3. on merit
gym 4. balance
dental 5. spouse
work-life 6. membership
surviving 7. productivity
maternity 8. insurance
loss of 9. snacks
flex 10. leave
reduced 11. life event
free 12. job security
inevitable 13. time

5.3. Complete sentences with proper words from the texts.

The better you become, the higher you rise. The more your career ______, the more you will be __________. Some employees choose to work hard, and they will be ________for it _________.

What makes the death benefit notable isn’t just its ________. The aim is “to ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­____________________”. “Obviously there’s no benefit to Google… for the company it’s ­­­­­________ situation” says Chief People Officer Laszlo Bock.

Companies should _______ their workers on the importance of a ________ work-life balance. It's also helpful to provide _____ time, maternity and_______ leave, telecommuting, or even __________ or exercise facilities.

6. Skill activity.Translate into English.

Льготы украинских депутатов

Депутаты Верховной Рады имеют две категории льгот: касающиеся их проживания и соцгарантий, а также для выполнения депутатских обязанностей. Перечислим некотрые из них:

-оплачиваемый отпуск на 45 дней;

-пенсия в размере 70 процентов суммы месячной зарплаты;

-в случае смерти депутата нетрудоспособным членам семьи назначается пенсия за потерю кормильца;

-бесплатное медицинское обслуживание в спецзаведениях;

-госохрана депутата и членов его семьи;

-похороны за счет местных органов исполнительной власти;

-право иметь до 31 помощника-консультанта;

-отдельный кабинет в Раде;

-бесплатное пользование правительственной связью в пределах их полномочий;

-депутатская неприкосновенность (immunity) на весь срок осуществления полномочий.

Ukrainian Pravda 4.02.15


Unit 4

Ice breaking questions.

Where can HR Manager find potential candidates?

Have you ever been to the job interview?

When contacting a new person do you visit his or her Facebook site or VK?

Vocabulary study.

4.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

4.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.

bulletin 1. of-mouth
relevant 2. board
recreational 3. facilities
conduct 4. references
word- 5. new employee
check 6. CV
look 7. face-to-face interview
introduce 8. candidate
suitable 9. for



Ice breaking questions.

Do you personally like discipline? Do you like to be disciplined?

What are the advantages of the discipline?

What is the motive behind the discipline?

Have you ever fired an employee? Is it easy to fire an employee?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

5.2. Explain the following categories of offense: poor effort, poor co-worker relations, inadequate subordinate-supervisor relations, inadequate supervisor-subordinate relations, workplace violence, dishonesty, espionage, theft, violation of safety rules. What is the worst offense in your opinion?

5.3. Match a word with its definition.


violation a. temporary dismissal
theft b. result
suspension c. constantly
consequence d. infringement, breaking
consistently e. conduct
warning f. stealing
punish g. boss, employer
espionage h. fake, insincere
offense n. i. self-respect
benefit n. j. forewarning
carry out l. employee
dignity m. spying
artificial n. do good to
supervisor o. discipline
subordinate p. crime

6. Skill activity.Translate the explanatory note into English.


производственного отдела № 2


Объяснительная записка

О совершении

дисциплинарного проступка


22 января 2008 г. я прибыл на рабочее место с опозданием на 2 часа 45 минут. Причиной моего опоздания явилась отмена электропоезда, которым я обычно следую до ст. Москва-Курская. Мне пришлось добираться рейсовым автобусом, который следовал по маршруту с задержками из-за пробок на автодороге Нижний Новгород - Москва и прибыл к месту назначения с 45-минутным опозданием.

Справки дежурного администратора железнодорожной станции Электрогорск и дежурного автостанции "Партизанская" прилагаю.

Мастер Б.В. Алексеев



Ice breaking questions.

Do you remember last time you help a person in need?

Can you name generous people in your life? Is it good to be generous?

Do you participate in the activities of any charity organization?

Do you or your family members donate money or clothes to the organizations that help poor people?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words.

5.2. Provide synonyms for the following words:

Community, participate, philosophy, persistent, poverty, altruistic, awareness, donate, charity, reduce, footprint, benefit, amplify, treat ethically.

5.3. Match the words with their definitions.

participate 1. teacher
afloat 2. support
corporate 3. catastrophe
mentor 4. survive
poverty 5. business
assistance 6. take part
disaster 7. being poor


6. Skill activity.Study the fact and comment.

80% of Japanese companies publish Corporate Responsibility reports, compared with 71% of British, 32% US, 23% Australian and 18% of South African companies. See more at:


Unit 7

Charismatic Leadership

Ice breaking questions.

Who is a leader? What is a charismatic leader?

Can you name a few charismatic leaders in Ukraine, in the world? What makes them charismatic?

Do you personally have a charisma? Do you know any one among your friends who has charisma?

Discuss in class.

4.1. Are you confident and creative?

4.2. What can you do to become confident and creative?

4.2. Find out in the dictionary different definitions of the word “charisma” to have a better understanding of the word.

4.4. Can you think of some examples of charismatic leaders with integrity?

4.5. Can you think of the charismatic leaders without integrity?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words.

5.2. Provide synonyms for the following words: stimulate, loyalty, creative, charisma, integrity, traits, elusive.

5.3. Correct mistakes in the spelling of the words.

Megnitism, charme, integrety, karisma, criativiti, confidance, loyelty.

6. Say if the following statements are True or False:

Charisma is an easy word to grasp.

When charismatic people are around you are always bored.

Charismatic people are not very confident.

Charismatic people want to win.

Charisma can not be developed.

Charisma should be connected to integrity.

Unit 8

Ice breaking questions.

What does Sociology study?

Can you name famous people that shaped Sociology?

What are they famous for?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

5.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.


think 1. century
ambition 2. importance
scientific 3. to understand
interact 4. study
shared 5. tank
emphasize 6. together
19th 7. norms



5.3. Explain the differences of the following words: science - scientific - society.

5.4. Explain the subject or focus of the following sciences: economics, psychology, anthropology, geography, and political science.


6. Skill activity.Analyze the amazing facts about humans and discuss.

· Laughing lowers levels of stress hormones and strengthens the immune system. Six-year-olds laugh an average of 300 times a day. Adults only laugh 15 to 100 times a day.

· The brain is much more active at night than during the day.

· The acid in your stomach is strong enough to dissolve razorblades.

· After eating too much, your hearing is less sharp.

· Your nose can remember 50,000 different scents.

· Your eyes are always the same size from birth but your nose and ears never stop growing.

· We are about 1 cm taller in the morning than in the evening.

· It is not possible to tickle yourself. Even the most ticklish among us do not have the ability to tickle ourselves.

· Women blink twice as many times as men do.

· Over 90% of diseases are caused by stress.

7. Research and creative activity.Make up a presentation about Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim and Max Weber, including biographical interesting facts and their sociological ideas.

7.1. Compose summary on the article 4 in the EXTRA READING part.



Unit 9

Agents of Socialization


Ice breaking questions.

How does your family help you to socialize in the society?

What is the role of the school and university in socializing?

In what way does the church socialize a person?

How does media influence a person in the society?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text.

5.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.


transmit 1. religions
spiritual 2. socialization
sacred 3. debate
switch 4. prescriptions
permanent 5. world
strong 6. culture
agents of 7. place



5.3. Explain the differences of the following combinations: transmit knowledge and transmit culture.

5.4. From the text collect key words connecting to the topic Family, School, Religion, Media in a form of a mind map.

6. Skill activity.Analyze facts in light of the studied text discuss in class.

· Advertisers spend the most on the Drama genre.

· The average cost for a 30 second advertisement on Primetime is $7,800.

· The average person watches 3 and half hours of Youtube per month.

· The average number of channels a person watches is 17.5.

  • Most watched TV night is Sunday. The least watched TV night is Friday.

Unit 10

Mainstream and Subculture


Ice breaking questions.

What is popular today in the world?

What is the fashion today in your city, in your university?

What is radical fashion, subculture fashion?

There is a usual behavior at the disco club. What behavior would you call strange at the disco club?

Do you prefer following the crowd, or do you prefer following the minority?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text. Provide synonyms for them.

5.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.


pierced 1. pledge
mainstream 2. texts
sacred 3. ground
national 4. culture
widespread 5. outrage
cause 6. values
common 7. lips
backyard 8. fence



5.3. Provide examples of the mainstream traditions and subculture traditions.

6. Skill activity.Study the list of subcultures in alphabetical order using Internet. Which subculture groups are attractive to you? Which subculture group would you like to join? What subculture is a total taboo for you?

A: Anarcho-punk

B: Beatniks, Bikers, Bohemianism, Bodybuilding

C: Cybergoth

D: Dark Culture, Deaf Culture

E: Emo

F: Fandom, Fetish subculture, Furries

G: Gamer, Goth, Gothic Lolita, Gopniki, Graffiti writers, Greaser

H: Hacker culture, Hiphop, Hippie

I: Industrial

J: Juggling, Juggalo, Junglist

L: Leather culture

M: Mods, Metalheads

N: NS Black Metal, Nazi punks, New Age, Norwegian black metal, Nudism/Naturism

O: Otaku,

P: Pokémon, Preppy, Punks

Q: Queer

R: Raggare, Rave, Rude boys

S: Sapeurs, Scooterboys, Skater, Skinheads (Red skin, Trojan skin, White power skin), Sukeban, Surfers, Swing kids

T: Teenybobbers, Teddyboys, Trekkies

V: Vampire culture

Z: Zazou

Unit 11

Crime and Deviance

Ice-breaking questions

Who is a criminal? Why do people commit crimes?

What is the difference between a criminal and a “bad person”?

What is the worst crime in your opinion?

What crime in your opinion deserves a death penalty?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text. Provide synonyms for them if possible.


5.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.

exceed 1. secret
deviant 2. laws
keep 3. norms
informal 4. speed
violate 5. out
sort 6. manner

5.3. Explain the difference between the following words: crime - criminal – crimea - criminalist - criminalistics.

5.4. Collect from the text key words connecting to the topic CRIME in a form of mind map.

Skill activity.

6.1. Study the meaning of each type of crime.




Child Pornography

Computer Crime


Credit Card Fraud

Drug Manufacturing

Drunk Driving





Hate Crime









6.2. Which one in your opinion deserves more serious punishment, which one deserves the slightest punishment?

6.3. Find out most popular type of crime in your country, Germany, China, Japan.

Unit 12

Sociology of Facebook

Ice breaking questions.

What social network do you regularly use?

Do you have account on Facebook?

How many Facebook or VK friends do you have?

Do you de-friend your Facebook friends and what is the usual reason of doing so?

Vocabulary study.

5.1. Explain the meaning of the underlined words in the text. Provide synonyms if possible.

5.2. Make up proper combinations based on the given text.


post 1. networking
inappropriate 2. audience
mass 3. an article
social 4. acquaintance
acknowledge 5. photo
embarrassing 6. comment


5.3. Collect from the text key words connecting to the topic Social Network in the alphabetical order (e.g. a- acquaintance, b-…, c- ).

6. Skill activity.Analyze Facebook facts of 2015 and be ready to discuss them in class. What was new for you? What tendencies can we observe? How can your university and business use this information?

· There are 639 million users on Qzone (China)

· 600 million users on Whatsapp

· Facebook messenger has 500 million users

· Viber has over 200 million users

· Russia’s “VKontake” has 100 million users

· Social networks will earn $8.3 billion from advertising in 2015

· There are nearly 1.4 billion Facebook users

· 47% of all Internet users are on Facebook

· 4.5 billion likes are generated daily

· Nearly 75% of Facebook’s revenue comes from mobile advertising

· Direct uploads of user videos to Facebook

· Instagram has 300 million users

· 70 million photos and videos are sent daily through Instagram

· 53% of internet users aged 18-29 use Instagram

Extra Reading



Text 1 (2000 знаков)

How I became a sociologist

The story of how I became a sociologist may help you to understand what’s unique about the sociological perspective, and to think about how sociology can cause you to think differently about your job and your life.

When I was in high school and looking for a job, I quickly decided that being a babysitter was a lot more fun than being a golf caddy. So I ended up babysitting for many different families. Doing that work, I temporarily took the place of many different parents with many different views on child-rearing: TV, or no TV? Strict bedtime, or whenever the kids get tired? Organized activities, or free play? Needless to say, every set of parents thought theirs was the “right” way to raise children. They might check out a stack of parenting books from the library, but they would usually end up sticking with the one that told them to do whatever it was that they were going to do anyway.

I went on to study education in college, but my favorite course was one on the history of education, where we learned about the many changes in people’s views of children and how they learn. Again, I was struck by how in every time and place, people were convinced that they had it all figured out. What made us so sure that we finally had it “right”?

Eventually, I realized that I was interested not in the education of children, but rather in the sociology of childhood — the study of different ideas about what children should do, and what those changing ideas have to do with changes in other areas of society. For my doctoral dissertation in sociology I studied the history of children’s books and media: how changes in technology and child-rearing have affected what we value in our children’s reading material. I systematically gathered articles about children’s books and media and analyzed them to test my hypothesis that, in our concern that kids aren’t reading enough, we have become much more open-minded about what we consider “good” reading material for children. I called the dissertation From Captains Courageous to Captain Underpants.

Becoming a sociologist allowed me to pursue questions that I felt needed to be answered: How do we decide what’s right and wrong whether it comes to kids’ books, or anything else? How do our society’s norms and values come to be? Why do the people in one neighborhood have completely different ideas about child-rearing than the people in the next neighborhood? Those are fundamentally sociological questions.


Text 2 (2800 знаков)

Managing talent

Companies will need to assess not only the number but also the quality and type of talent they need, in light of their strategic and business requirements. To retain specialists, companies will need to tailor career tracks so that they reward and fully utilise different types of employees with different interests and skills levels.

Managing demographics

With the workforce in Western Europe graying, European companies must take actions to minimise two different risks: the loss of capacity and knowledge as employees retire and the aging of the workforce. One of the most effective ways to minimise a company’s exposure is implementing a comprehensive system of job families across the company. This clusters employees whose skills and specific experiences create opportunities for job exchanges across many levels. Companies should forecast, on a job family basis, how their current workforce will develop over the next 5, 10 and 15 years.

Managing work-life balance

As the boundaries between private and work-life blur, employees are increasingly selecting – or rejecting – jobs based on how well they can help the individuals achieve work-life balance or advance personal goals and values. In order to attract and retain highly talented individuals, companies will therefore need to offer flexible work – unlocking hr’s potential arrangements. They will also need to appeal to employees growing desire to derive a sense of greater purpose from their work. Companies should implement or improve programmes that afford employees flexible working hours, opportunities to work from home and job sharing.

Karl Marx

Karl Marx was born in 1818 in Germany. He never called himself a sociologist – that word was then too new to mean anything to most people — but he was a little bit of just about everything else. He started out studying law, became involved in philosophy and history, and later worked as a journalist and political activist. Marx’s life and work were inspired by his disgust with the capitalist economic system, especially with the way it kept millions of people toiling in dirty factories and parched fields with very little to show for their work at the end of the day. He was convinced there could be a better way, and he worked to support the Communist Party, a group dedicated to creating a society where everyone shared and shared alike. This troublemaking got Marx kicked out of Germany, France, and Belgium, and he finally landed in England; he died in London in 1883.

Marx, working with his close friend and colleague Frederich Engels, wrote a lot, but much of it took decades to be organized, published, and translated. It wasn’t until the 1930s that people truly understood everything Marx was trying to say.

Sociologists consider Marx important for two main reasons: his general theory of history and his specific ideas about power and exploitation. Marx’s theory of history is often called materialism. For Marx, the most important forces in history weren’t ideas; they were basically economic forces. Every stage in history, according to Marx, was distinguished by its own mode of production, a way of organizing the production and distribution of material goods. Each mode of production (ancient slaveholding society, medieval feudalism, and so forth) has its own inherent conflicts among different classes, and those conflicts inevitably lead to the failure of one mode of production and the beginning of another.

Marx was particularly concerned with the mode of production that dominated his time: industrial capitalism. Marx wrote about a number of different class groups that he saw having roles in capitalism, but the two most important were:

✓ The bourgeois: the wealthy, powerful people who own the factories, the farmland, and just about everything else.

✓ The proletariat: the people who don’t own much and are forced to work for the bourgeois to feed their families.

Marx thought that capitalism was bad for everyone, but especially for the proletariat. The proletariat, said Marx, are especially hurt by capitalism because they are viciously exploited by the bourgeois. No matter how much profit a factory owner makes in a day, if his workers don’t have anywhere else to work, all the owner needs to do is pay the workers enough to keep them alive — the bourgeois factory owner keeps all the extra profits, earned on the backs of the hardworking proletariat.


Text 4 (2500 знаков)

Emile Durkheim

The French scholar Emile Durkheim spent his life not just practicing sociology, but trying — quite successfully — to convince the world of sociology’s importance. Durkheim was born in France in 1858, studied philosophy and social theory, and ultimately founded the first European department of sociology. His life had much less excitement than Marx’s, but he was full of new and provocative ideas about society. Сompared to Marx, Durkheim had a fundamentally different — and much more positive view — of society. For Durkheim, humans are fundamentally social. In fact, thought Durkheim, our social life — at home, work, play, and worship — is what defines us, what gives us meaning and purpose. It’s what makes us truly human, and that fact is what makes sociology — the study of society — so important. In his book The Rules of Sociological Method, Durkheim set out his vision of what sociology is and how it should be done. Specifically, he said that the job of the sociologist is to study social facts: facts that are true of groups of people rather than individuals. Those are the facts Durkheim thought sociologists should take as their special area of concern.

Durkheim agreed with Marx that society was changing, but rather we were becoming more differentiated from one another in all kinds of ways. Earlier in history, when society was relatively simple, there were just a few different jobs people performed: hunter, gatherer, farmer, priest. Now, there are thousands of different jobs that need doing, and they’re very different from one another: software engineer, preschool teacher, screenwriter. This functional differentiation, thought Durkheim, was both necessary and — in broad terms — a good thing. Our shared social values help us work together productively and, for the most part, peacefully.

To prove the usefulness of sociology as a discipline, Durkheim chose to study a topic that would seem deeply personal, much more the domain of the psychologist or philosopher than the sociologist: suicide. By demonstrating that sociology could help us understand something so intensely private and individual, Durkheim showed the power of his newly invented sociological method. In his book Suicide, Durkheim pointed out that though any individual person’s decision to commit suicide was, of course, personal, suicides seem to have shared social causes. Durkheim observed that some countries have higher suicide rates than others. Whatever combination of factors cause people to commit suicide, they seemed to be greater in Sweden than in Spain; further, they were greater among unmarried people than married people, and greater among men than women.

In the end, Durkheim concluded that there were actually different types of suicide that tended to happen for different reasons. For example, egoistic suicides were more frequent in groups with weak social ties (for example, countries with religious values emphasizing individualism) and altruistic suicides were more frequent in groups with extremely strong social ties (for example, the military).


Text 5 (2600)

Max Weber

Marx and Durkheim are easy to compare and contrast because their views about what matters in society were so strikingly different. Marx thought it was all about conflict; Durkheim thought it was all about cooperation. Marx was concerned with the material world; Durkheim was concerned with the world of ideas and values.

Max Weber (pronounced VAY-ber) is much harder to identify. Weber thought that social life is marked by both conflict and cohesion. Sometimes we fight, sometimes we get along; the trick is to understand why and when. Max Weber’s best-known book is called The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism contains Weber’s argument that the values spread by Protestant theologians like John Calvin were very influential in Europe’s transition from traditional society to modern capitalism. Essentially, Calvin and other Protestant theologians argued for the values of hard work, discipline, and savings. The belief that time is money, and money is good (because an abundance of it suggests that God favors you particularly) is foundational to the capitalist economy. It’s a brilliant sociological argument, and its core insight — the connection between a rigorous religious worldview and the capitalist economic system — may have been partially inspired by the troubled marriage of Weber’s parents.

Weber’s mother was devoutly religious, a strong believer in the moral value of self-sacrifice, strict discipline, and hard work. Weber’s father, on the other hand, was a worldly, wealthy man who unapologetically enjoyed the luxuries his money could buy. Weber’s work addressed this paradox: that modern life has some of the ascetic self-discipline of the monk — you must be at your desk from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., fulfilling a precise list of duties — and yet it has afforded us luxuries and freedoms unimaginable to people who lived in the pre-modern era. It may be dehumanizing to work in exchange for money rather than to work growing food for your family, but now you have money that you can spend on whatever you want: maybe food, maybe a vacation. Whatever!

In The Protestant Ethic, Weber tells the story of a landowner who hires some farmers to work his land. To motivate the farmers to work harder, the landowner increases the amount he pays per acre mowed; however, the landowner discovers, to his astonished frustration, that the farmers then proceed to work less hard because they only want to make enough to live on and after their “raise,” it takes less work to do it. If we all behaved that way, capitalism would never work. We’re the “good” farmers who work harder for greater financial reward — but to what end?

According to Weber, modern society is marked by rationalization: Most things are organized according to standard rules and systems that are meant to apply to everyone, with society meant to run like a well-oiled machine. In your job, for example, you don’t have the responsibilities you have and get paid the amount you do just because you’re you — those things go with the job, and if you quit, the next person to take your job would perform the same tasks and get paid the same amount.


Text 6 (2300)


Altruism refers, in a word, to generosity. When you offer a service or a gift with no thought of reward, that is pure altruism. When you offer something for a small reward (like a t-shirt or a hug), that’s still generosity — even if it’s not pure altruism. The existence of this kind of prosocial behavior may be the Achilles’ heel of rational choice theory. Of course, most people are not Mother Teresa. In many cases, when we give things away, we get other things in return. For example:

✓ A major donor to a museum or a college may be rewarded by having a building named after them, and may be given a seat on a board of directors, yielding valuable social and professional connections.

✓ When you give your boyfriend or girlfriend a birthday gift, you cause them to feel more attached to you and thus gain security in your relationship — plus, when it’s your birthday they will probably turn right around and give you a gift of comparable value.

✓ When you volunteer your time to an organization, you are gaining potentially valuable experience and the social prestige of being seen to give your time away.

Plus, you may be having fun and/or being directly rewarded with free services or products from that organization.

All this being true, it’s still the case that often people do act altruistically in ways that are hard to understand from a rational-choice perspective. People make anonymous donations, stand by loved ones for years while they fight fatal diseases, and toil at services that few see or appreciate.

In fact, some sociologists argue that living peacefully and constructively in society requires constant acts of generosity on everyone’s part. If everyone actually tried to get away with whatever they could, doing exactly what they pleased just so long as the reward eclipsed whatever punishment they might face, society would fall apart. Think about what it would be like if every storekeeper had to assume that every single customer would steal if given any opportunity, or if no one ever let anyone else merge into a crowded lane on the freeway. No police force could hold a society together if all its members were determined to act for their personal gain. So why don’t they?

According to Durkheim, it’s norms and shared values that hold society together. Society is not just about jumping on the back of the next guy so you can get higher; it’s about cooperating to achieve goals together — and joining together to celebrate those achievements. People internalize the norms of society so deeply that they regularly act in ways that would seem to be contrary to any selfish motives . . . and fortunately, this leads to a working society that benefits everyone. To understand the decisions a person makes, you have to understand the society they come from.


Text 7 (2300)

English Grammar Basics

Can / could.


Этот модальный глагол имеет две формы: can– для настоящего времени, could – для прошедшего. Употребляется он:


1. Для выражения возможности или способности совершения действия.

В этом значении переводится как "мочь", "уметь".

She can speak English well but she can't write it at all. Она может (умеет) хорошо говорить по-английски, но совсем неумеет писать.


2. Для выражения разрешения совершить действие (в вопросительных и утвердительных предложениях)

. Can we go home ? Можно нам идти ? Yes, you cango. Да, вы можете идти.


3. Для выражения запрета совершить действие, выраженного инфинитивом (только в отрицательных предложениях).

You can't speak at the lessons.На уроке разговаривать нельзя.


4. Для выражения просьбы (в вопросительных предложениях)

. Can (could) you give me your dictionary ? Вы не дадите мне свой словарь ?

Форма could употребляется для более вежливого обращения.


To be able to


Сочетание to be able + инфинитив с частицей to является синонимом модального глагола can для выражения возможности или способности совершения действия. Но в отличии от can употребляется во всех временах. Часто в значении «суметь выйти из трудной ситуации»

He is able to help you. Он может помочь вам.

He was able to help you. Он смог помочь вам.

He will be able to help you. Он сможет помочь вам.


May / might


Этот модальный глагол имеет две формы: may– для настоящего времени, might – для прошедшего. Глагол may употребляется для выражения:


1. Разрешения в утвердительных и вопросительных предложениях.

You may go. Ты можешь идти.

May I help you ? Разрешите вам помочь.


2. Запрещения в отрицательных предложениях.

You may not come here. Несмей сюда приходить.


3. Предположения, неуверенности в утвердительных и отрицательных предложениях.

It may rain today. Возможно сегодня будет дождь.


Глагол mightупотребляется:

1. В придаточных дополнительных предложениях в соответствии с правилом согласования времён.

She said that he might take her book. Она сказала, что он может взять её книгу.

2. Для обозначения вероятности совершения действия.

He might come. Он, может быть, придёт.


Be allowed to

Be permitted to


Словосочетания to be allowed и to be permitted + инфинитив с частицей to являются синонимами модального глагола may (см. пункт 1).

I am allowed to use this device. Мне разрешено (я могу) использовать этот прибор.

He will be allowed to use this device. Ему разрешат.




Глагол must употребляется:

1. Для выражения долженствования, необходимости произвести действие в настоящем или будущем.

I must go. Мне надо идти.

2.Для выражения запрещения в отрицательном предложении.

You mustn't do it. Нельзя этого делать.

3. Для выражения вероятности какого-либо действия, предположения.

He must have read this book. Он, вероятно, читал эту книгу.

4. для обозначения настоятельного совета, рекомендации.

You must come and see my new flat. Ты должен придти посмотреть нашу новую квартиру.


To have to


Глагол to have (to) употребляется в сочетании с инфинитивом с частицей toдля выражения необходимости совершить действие в силу определённых обстоятельств. Соответствует русскому "придётся, пришлось".

It was very dark and we had to stayat home. Было очень темно, и нам пришлось остаться дома.

I don't have to stay here. Мне не нужно здесь оставаться.


3.7. to be + Infinitive


Сочетание глагола to be с инфинитивом употребляется для выражения необходимости совершения действия в соответствии с предыдущей договорённостью или заранее намеченным планом. Переводится как "должен, должен был" и т.п.

I wasto meet her at 3 o'clock.Я должен был встретить её в 3 часа.

They are to begin this work at once. Они должны начать работу немедленно.


Shall, should


Глагол shall выражает обещание, намерение, угрозу, предостережение.

He shall gethis money. Он получит свои деньги.

The child shall be punished for it.Ребёнок будет наказан за это.


Глагол shall также выражает запрос относительно дальнейших действий.Близок к «давай» и в вопросах «нужно?»

What time shall we meet ? Во сколько встретимся ?

Shall I open a window? «Нужно» мне открыть окно ?


Глагол should в основном употребляется для выражения настоятельного совета, рекомендации.

You should see a doctor. Вам следует показаться врачу.



Условные предложения

Предложение (The Sentence).

Вопросительное предложение.


Существуют 3 основных типа вопросов:

1. Ообщие вопросы,

2. Специальные вопросы

3. Вопросы к подлежащему.


Общий вопрос – это вопрос ко всему предложению, и на него можно кратко ответить Yes / no (да / нет).


Специальный вопрос - задаётся к какому-либо члену предложения, кроме подлежащего. Кратким ответом на него будет любое слово из предложения, кроме подлежащего.


"Вопрос к подлежащему" задаётся к подлежащему или его определению. Ответом на него будет либо само подлежащее, либо определение к подлежащему.

The hotel bus left for downtown.Гостиничный автобус уехал в центр.

What left for downtown?Что уехало в центр? – Автобус.

What bus left for downtown?Какой автобус уехал в центр? – Гостиничный.

Структурно эти типы вопросов различаются порядком слов в них.


Таблица неправильных английских глаголов

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