Home / Scientific activities / Articles / Socialization


Is the process by which a person becomes a social being, learning the necessary culture content and behavior in order to become a member of a group or society.

The person learn the meaning of the activities which are shared by the group or society, through any socialization we become members of the culture from which we were previously isolated. We become party to the shared set of meanings which constitute that culture

E.g. student who entered the nursing institutes for the first time started the process of becoming socialized into the culture of nursing education

The feeling of bewilderment in a hospital ward is familiar to the first time patient or the student nurse on the ward for the first time. Such people have not yet learned the meanings, which sustain the ward routine. The actions of others around them do not make sense and consequently, they don’t know what should be done next, they have not yet built up the required store of meanings they need in order to cope with the social situations they find themselves in.

This is an anxiety provoking and disabling state in which the individual does not know what behavior is appropriate or how others are going to adjust his actions. The priority for a person in this position is to enter quickly into the world of shared meaning around them; others are usually keen to help because they fear potentially embarrassing deviations from the shared script and because they want to increase the social usefulness of the individual

This is the rationale for introducing new and even prospective patients to ward personnel and procedures

They are being introduced to a set of shared meanings, which the staff take for ranted this enables them to move from a state of bewilderment, in which it is difficult for them to undertake independent action because of their uncertainties, to one of the cultural competence, in which they can plan their own actions and make independence judgment about what is going on around them. Later these old hands may be able to introduce new patients or nurses to ward routines. 

Ways of achieving socialization

  • Usually it proceeds through various types of conversation with culture members, e.g. lectures, gossip, individual instruction, reprimands, commands, and so on.
  • This is because language provides the best medium for communicating and storing the shared meanings necessary to bring off our cooperative performances.
  • There are other ways of storing such as e.g.:
  • Clothes can convey much about whom people are and what they are they are supposed to be doing.
  • Uniforms in nursing provide a good example of how clothes themselves embody a shared set of meanings. In this case meaning about the way people should relate to one another.
  • Language remains the primary store for such meanings so that, socialization consists initially of learning new ways of talking about ourselves and others
  • g. Learning the meaning of the title head nurse involves at least a basic understanding of the way hospital are organized into wards and the nature of hierarchical, authority relationships.
  • As we become culture members we internalize these new ways of talking about our experiences.

Factors that determine human development

Nature, Nurture, or Sociobiology

  • Nature: human being inborn biological characteristics or heredity
  • Nurture: human being socialization or some combination of both.
  • Sociobiology: propose that through evolution, human beings have acquired tendencies that determine much of their behavior.


  • Charles Darwin, biologist, emphasized
  1. Natural selection: (principle of survival of the fittest) in the struggle for space food, and shelter. The most adaptable members of a species will live, and the less adaptable will perish
  2. Heredity oriented approach: (the nature position) some scientist who shared this approach began to focus their analysis on instincts unalterable behavior complexes transmit genetically to their children society of a herding instinct
  3. Evidence suggesting that certain types of behavior are principally learned: if these behaviors were instinctual, then would occur in all societies, and they do not.
  • Societies exist where most people are non aggressive and non acquisitive, and under certain circumstances people will voluntarily isolate themselves


Is the most important factor in human development.

  • According to Watson, children can be turned into anything-doctors, lawyers, artists, beggars, or thieves-depending on how they are raised

     Support for Nurture as determinant of human development 

  • Both nature and nurture affect human development, but the sociological perspective decidedly emphasizes nurture
  • The nurture position suggests that from early infancy an intimate relationship between child and caretaker establishes a child’s sense of well-being and permits the child to develop the social and intellectual skills necessary for effective participation in society
  • When children are deprived of such relationships their development is seriously affected


In the past two decades a new school of thought emphasizing the importance of heredity has emerged.

  • Proponents of sociobiology argue that through the evolutionary process, human beings have acquired tendencies that determine much of their behavior
  • These specialists argue that behavior will be enhanced if both genetic and cultural factors are examined

Theories of Socialization

Self: is one’s perception of his or her own person, which forms as a result of other people’s response in the course of socialization.

  • Institutionalized children often seem to possess a confusion sense of self, and children who grow up isolated have an undeveloped sense of self
  • The self is the product of a learning process that occurs in interaction with others


  • Cooley and the Looking-Class Self.


  • There are 3 steps in the development of the looking glass self
  1. Our perception of how we appear to another person
  2. Our estimate of the judgment the other person makes about us
  3. Some emotional feeling about this judgment such as pride or shame
  • Mixed Messages of Looking-Glass Self
  • Faulty communication or confusion some times happens
  • A disapproving expression might be mistaken for an approving smile
  • A person may receive mixed messages from different people


  • Mead Conception of the Development of Self

Mead visualized the development of the self as a three-stage process:

    1- Preparatory stage

It occurs in early childhood. In the course of their 2nd and 3rd years, children will be:

  • Imitate others’ behavior
  • Copy the way that their parents or older siblings hold a spoon, do dance steps, wave good bye
  • Learn some useful skills through imitation but discover little about how roles work

    2- Play stage

Children enter the play stage at the age of four or five

  • Play is the process of taking the role of specific individuals and thereby starting to learn the rights and obligations that particular roles entail
  • A child plays at different roles (being a mother, a teacher, a policeman
  • At this stage children role performances begin to give them an understanding of their significance
  • These performance are definitely (play)
  • Children are not committed to these roles and are able to make up the rules as they proceed

   3- Games stage

A game is a group of activity in which each participant’s role requires interaction with two or more individuals.

  • To take part in games, a person must have a generalized other-an image of the role expectations for all the game participants with whom a person must interact
  • The deference between play and the game is that in the latter the child must have the attitude of all the others involved in that game unlike the play stage, the game stage is serious business.
  • Children are expected to commit themselves to the roles they perform and to perform effectively
  • They must learn rules governing all participants’ behavior
  • Not following the rules can lead to a sense of personal failure.

Check Also

Dr. Fatima Wunass and Dr. Zainab Al Tarifi publish a joint scientific research

Dr. Fatima Wanas and Dr. Zainab Ali Hussein, in cooperation with Mr. Amin Jihad Darwish, …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *