General topics within sociology include the study of the social order, societal change over time, and individual versus societal human behavior. Specific topics within sociology include social stratification and mobility, ideology and culture, race and immigration, among many more. As sociology is the study of human society, researchers may pick almost any aspect of human life to examine in a sociological way.
Sociologists studying a society's social order examine how a society is structured and why. Researchers examine if certain groups dominate society and define social structures, or if societal consensus keeps everyone in line.
One major debate in sociology involves the individual versus society as a whole. Researchers ask whether society is shaped more by the individual will of everyone involved, or if society's constraints and motivations shape individuals beyond their own free will.
Such overarching sociological questions often form the basis of differing schools of thought within sociology, such as those formed by Marx and Weber, or contemporary functionalist and conflict theory. However, many specialized sociological topics also exist. For instance, sociologists examining social stratification and mobility may look at a variety of even more specialized subtopics that affect social stratification, such as class relations, race and ethnicity, gender and age. Sociologists also take these many subtopics together to examine how they relate to one another, creating the social system.